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Automotive’s Global Stage Revamped and Refreshed

North American International Auto Show showcases the future of mobility

By Rod Alberts

Detroit is where future mobility innovations meet the pavement. With the largest concentration of the world’s top automotive and technology executives, designers, engineers and thought leaders, the North American International Auto Show (NAIAS) serves as the global stage for companies to debut brand-defi ning vehicles and industry-shaping announcements.

NAIAS is unmatched in the industry in presenting six unique shows in one, including: The Gallery, an ultra-luxury automotive event; AutoMobili-D, an inside look at future mobility platforms; Press Preview; Industry Preview; Charity Preview; and then concluding with a nine-day public show.

There are a lot of new things on tap for the 2018 NAIAS, some highlights include:

 Now in its 12th year, The Gallery is an ultra-luxury automotive event and has now become the offi cial kickoff to NAIAS. New for 2018, The Gallery will be back at Cobo Center in the breathtaking atrium overlooking the international waterway. Guests will experience a nearly $10-million collection of the most acclaimed automobiles the world has to offer, including brands such as Aston Martin, Bentley, Ferrari, Lamborghini and Rolls Royce, to name just a few.

 The inaugural launch of AutoMobili-D in 2017 featured more than 180 brands, ranging from automakers, to suppliers, to tech startups as well as universities and government organizations. No other event in North America provides an international platform for this vast array of companies, organizations and thought leaders under one roof. For 2018, AutoMobili-D will expand by 30,000 square feet and will now encompass 150,000 square feet and allow for more companies to showcase their technologies.

 In partnership with Michigan Economic Development Corp. and PlanetM, we are launching Match Meetings, a businessto-business and business-to-industry connection platform that will be a fi rstever at an auto show. As we look to grow audiences attending AutoMobili-D, this showcase now will extend into the fi rst public show weekend (Jan. 20-21) and allow attendees to experience the latest innovations our industry has to offer. In addition, on that fi rst public show weekend, AutoMobili-D will host FACE – Future Automotive Career Exposition – where attendees can interface with leading companies looking to fi ll open positions.

 Following Charity Preview this year, “After 9,” the NAIAS offi cial Charity Preview after-party at Cobo Center, allows you and your friends to stay inside and rock the night away. Enjoy memorable performances by Motown’s very own, The Four Tops, and returning favorite, Your Generation In Concert. After 9 is free to attend for all Charity Preview attendees.

As you can see, 2018 is shaping up to be a signifi cant year for our show and the great city of Detroit.

NAIAS has a tremendous impact on our region, with an economic impact totaling $450 million. Our much-anticipated Charity Preview, started back in 1976 by a group of local Detroit automotive dealers, is the largest annual singlenight fundraiser in the world, with $5.2 million being raised for local children’s charities in 2017.

In total, more than 800,000 people walked through the doors of the world-class Cobo Center and experienced the latest and greatest vehicles this world has to offer.

It is an honor to be part of our nation’s most prestigious and infl uential automotive showcase, and I encourage you all to visit us in January.

For more information on the show and additional details to all of the events, please visit

Rod Alberts is the executive director of the North American International Auto Show.