Everyone loves an auto show. Okay, maybe not everyone. But we do and if you’re reading this, chances are you do too. It’s a great place to marvel at new technology and the latest, greatest automotive models. So as we approach the season for a few of the biggest shows, let’s take a look back at the story of this essential part of car culture. After all, we’re car lovers too.

The First Shows

Before the automobile, people got around on bicycles.  And before bicycles, there was the horse.  Probably explains why there are so many equestrian statues in our cities. Compared to regular, old-fashioned walking, practically anything was progress. But by the end of the 19th century, car shows started replacing bicycle shows in popularity.  The first motor show took place in Paris in 1898 at the city’s famous Grand Palais.  118 years later, it’s still one of the most important auto shows in the world.

Coming to America

It didn’t take long for Americans to organize an auto show of their own. New York City hosted the first U.S. auto show in 1900.  Then big cities like Boston, Chicago, Philadelphia, Buffalo, Cleveland, and Detroit soon followed. Eventually, it seemed every city got their very own car show. In those early years, thousands of people flocked to see the latest models and groundbreaking technology. If you wanted to see the future, car shows were where you went. Never shy about self-promotion, manufacturers used these events for any important announcements.  The public, already in love with the automobile, embraced every aspect of the car. People craved to see just how an idea on paper turned into a machine on the road.

The Future

Auto Shows are still highly anticipated events for car lovers everywhere. While there are similar expositions focusing on other cultural hallmarks, it’s hard to rival the personal connection many visitors get at car shows. That’s because most of us drive and see #CarLove around every corner.

Are you going to any upcoming auto shows? We’d love to hear about it in the comments. Hope to see you at one of the shows!