89th Geneva International Motor Show Press Days

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  • The Swiss government has banned gatherings of more than 1000 people until mid-March, leading to the announcement that the Geneva auto show is canceled.
  • Europe’s most important show was scheduled to open next week.
  • Announcement follows spread of Covid-19, or coronavirus, within Europe.

    The 2020 Geneva auto show has been canceled due to concerns about the spread of the Covid-19 virus (coronavirus) within Europe. The continent’s most important show was due to open next week, with several significant new models set to make their debut there, but the decision this morning of the Swiss federal government to ban all gatherings of more than 1000 people meant organizers had no choice but to pull the show.

    “Based on the decision rendered by the Swiss authorities, we have had to cancel the Geneva motor show. Its not our responsibility; it was up to the federal [government] to come to that conclusion,” Maurice Turrettini, chairman of the Geneva International Motor Show Foundation Board, told a press conference. “We were expecting that decision which is why the last days were difficult’ we were waiting for it but nothing was coming.”

    As of 8:00 this morning local time, Swiss media were reporting 15 confirmed cases of the Covid-19 virus in the country, three of which are in Geneva, with 500 people in the country having been tested for displaying possible symptoms of the disease. Covid-19 has already caused nearly 3000 deaths worldwide, mostly in China, and is now being reported in other regions. The news from Geneva follows cancellation of the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona and Facebook’s Developer Conference in California. The Chinese Grand Prix race in April has also been postponed, although Formula 1 boss Chase Carey told a press conference on Wednesday that races in Bahrain on March 22 and Vietnam on April 5 will still go ahead.

    With many automakers having shared information on their new models ahead of time, it seems likely that there will still be something of a virtual auto show on the official press day next Tuesday. We’ll be sharing pictures and details with you all as soon as we can.



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