Fiat Chrysler Automobiles’ Fiat, Jeep, and Alfa Romeo brands will all sit out this year’s Frankfurt Motor Show in what has become an increasingly common trend of major automakers eschewing big, traditional auto shows for more unconventional venues. In fact, according to Automotive News Europe, the nine major marques that have decided to skip next month’s auto show in Germany together account for 20 percent of all automobile sales in Europe.
Participating in a major auto show like Frankfurt costs money, and there’s some question of how directly that money spent translates to actual sales. In the US, Ford overtly demonstrated its willingness to seek alternate opportunities for exposure by unveiling the refreshed, 2018 Ford Mustang at small events in New York and Los Angeles while the 2017 North American International Auto Show was taking place in Detroit. The automaker also seems to have identified the Goodwood Festival of Speed as a promising new venue.
“The manufacturers are very keen to find different ways of showing their products and we’ve been part of that change,” Goodwood Festival organizer Lord March told Automotive News Europe. Goodwood attracts less than a fourth of the Frankfurt Motor Show’s traffic, but automakers needn’t compete so fervently for attention. Lord March also estimates that the cost of participating in the festival is about three times less than to do it up at a major auto show. Plus, social media reach is much stronger for the event.
Joining Fiat, Jeep, and Alfa Romeo in sitting out the 2017 Frankfurt Motor Show are DS, Infiniti, Mitsubishi, Nissan, Peugot, and Volvo. Earlier this year, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles chose to stage its new-car reveals at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas rather than the North American International Auto Show in Detroit.