The iconic Geneva International Motor Show, a staple in the automotive world for over a century, has announced its permanent closure, marking the end of an era that began in 1905. This decision comes as a blow to the automotive community, which has witnessed the show’s prominence decline in recent years.

Organizers cite waning interest from automakers and increased competition from other European motor shows as primary reasons for this closure. Alexandre de Senarclens, president of the permanent committee of the foundation behind the event, described the move as an “extremely regrettable decision.” He stated, “The lack of interest shown by manufacturers in the Geneva Salon in a difficult industry context, the competition from the Paris and Munich shows which are favored by their domestic industry, and the investment levels required to maintain such a show, sound the final blow” .

The Geneva Motor Show had a storied history, first opening its doors in 1905. The inaugural event drew 17,000 visitors and showcased the budding automotive industry. Despite early setbacks including an economic crisis and World War I, the show resumed in 1923, growing in popularity and prestige over the decades. At its zenith in 2005, the show attracted nearly 750,000 visitors.

The COVID-19 pandemic dealt a significant blow, forcing a four-year hiatus. When the show returned in 2024, it struggled to regain its former glory, featuring only 37 exhibitors and attracting 168,000 visitors—figures that starkly contrasted with the pre-pandemic attendance of 602,000 visitors and 184 exhibitors in 2019 .

With the decision to permanently shutter the Geneva event, the organizers have requested cantonal authorities to dissolve the foundation behind it. They acknowledged the uncertainty in the automotive industry and the declining allure of major European shows as factors too risky to ignore. “There are too many uncertainties linked to the automotive industry and the eroded attractiveness of the major European shows to take the risk of investing further into the future,” the organization stated .

However, the Geneva International Motor Show’s legacy will continue, albeit in a different form. The Qatar edition, which successfully debuted last year, will continue its journey. The next Geneva International Motor Show Qatar is scheduled for November 2025 in Doha, ensuring that the Geneva show’s influence will live on in the Middle East .

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