Here's everything we know so far.
Never before in the 90-year history of the Geneva Motor Show has the annual event been canceled, and yet it was for 2020. The coronavirus sweeping through many countries and regions must be contained and the Swiss government, following a reported coronavirus case in the city of Geneva late last week, issued an order banning any public or private event with more than 1,000 people in attendance. The Geneva show clearly fits that description. So it goes.
But what about the 2020 New York Auto Show, set to get underway in exactly one month? New models such as the Ford Bronco and Volkswagen ID.4 are scheduled to be revealed there. Will it proceed as planned or also suffer the same fate as Geneva?
The organizers of the NY event have just announced there are no plans at this time to cancel the event, which is set to take place at the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center in Manhattan.
"The Javits Center and the Auto Show are taking precautionary measures inside the venue while the state and local agencies are taking steps to limit the spread of respiratory viruses," the official press release states. "During every flu season, Javits staff implements a set of protocols designed to prevent communicable sicknesses, and in light of the recent novel coronavirus, efforts have increased significantly."
Which is great, except that they echo the statements made by the Geneva show's organizers just days before its cancellation. New York is also implementing many of the same safety measures to help prevent the virus's spread, just in case anyone in attendance has it. These measures will include the installation of 70 hand-sanitizing stations throughout the convention center, increased cleaning of high-volume, high-touch areas such as restrooms, a team of specially trained paramedics on-site at all times, and constant communication with the city, state, and federal health officials.
In addition, a new set of disinfectant cleaning standards will be put into place for vehicle detailing. Nothing like potentially catching coronavirus by simply touching a car's door handle, right? Obviously that's not likely going to happen and it's clear the Big Apple's annual car show organizers are taking all necessary precautions ahead of time.
However, it may not ultimately be up to them whether or not the show goes on. The State of New York or even the US federal government could make the final decision. Let's hope they don't follow in the footsteps of their Swiss government counterpart.