The 5 Biggest Car Shows Around the World

There is nothing that has quite the same appeal as a car. If you are on holiday and spot a sporty number you would never be able to afford in a million years you will get your photo taken with it. Any TV show about cars attracts millions of viewers and when classy cars are smashed up on the big screen you can almost hear the men in the audience crying into their popcorn. Car, or auto, shows are big business around the world with people travelling thousands of miles to get excited about shiny bits of chrome and ridiculously priced audio equipment. Here Columbus Direct shares the world’s 5 biggest car shows.



The daddy of them all is the Frankfurt motor show. This is by far the largest motor show in the world as is now so big it is held bi-annually as logistically it is impossible to stage it every year. The 65th event ran for 12 days from the 10th-22nd September 2013. Family cars, sports cars, concept cars, luxury cars, you name it they all want a spot at Frankfurt. This is one all the major manufacturers gear up for as they know that their new models have a pretty poor chance of success if they don’t get to display at the Frankfurt Motor Show. Even though the 2013 has only just finished, the planning of 2015 has already started.

The Big Meet, Vasteras

Although Sweden is well known for their motor industry being in northern as opposed to central Europe makes in a rather unusual place to hold one of the world’s biggest outdoor car shows. This is no ordinary motor show however, this is the Big Meet. Quite simply, this is the biggest collection of American cars you will find anywhere, even compared to the US. There are around 15,000 vehicles here at any one time including street rods, 50’s cruisers, customs, muscle cars, Mustangs Camaros and Corvettes. Visitors travel here from more that 25 countries including Australia, Mexico, Israel, Japan, Canada, Russia, Turkey, Morocco, all over Europe and, of course, the US.


The Swiss city of Geneva opens its doors to car enthusiasts from around the globe on a yearly basis for its famous motor show. The event, which it is best described as, takes place every year next to Geneva Cointron Airport in a convention centre known as the Geneva Palexpo. The team behind the show is the Organisation Internationale des Constructeurs d’Automobiles, and it is considered one of the most important shows of its kind on the motoring calendar. Hundreds of manufacturers come here to show off their new designs and it is a big favourite with British car enthusiasts only being a short flight away.


It stands to reason that one of the world’s biggest car shows will be in Mo-town itself. The official title of this show is the NAIAS, or North American International Auto Show. It is held every year, usually around January, and often claims to be the largest car show in North America. It has been held at the Cobo Centre since 1965 and occupies almost 1m sq ft of floor space. Many iconic cars of the past have made their début in Detroit, such as the Ford Lincoln and Jeep Grand Cherokee. Being in America, there is all sorts of side shows going on as well, and is a day out for thousands of American families as there is plenty for the rest of the family to do while dad is drooling over the cars.


The technological centre of the Eastern world is the logical choice to hold the southern hemisphere’s largest car show. Like Frankfurt, its size only makes it viable every two years, and it is the premier event at which to showcase new cars, motorcycles and commercial vehicles. When you think how many Japanese cars are on the road you can only start to imagine the volume of models on show here. One of the major draws now in Tokyo is the amount of new hybrid and electric vehicles on show, and it is reckoned that by the 2017 show these will way outnumber the amount of petrol powered cars on display.

There are hundreds of car shows held every year almost everywhere in the world, and while many are satisfied with a local show, there are plenty who travel to the biggest ones. As well as shows such as these there are others dedicated to specific models, such as VW Beetles, or classic vehicles.

There has never been a better time to be a petrol head as you are spoilt for choice as far as your favourite hobby is concerned, and if you get the chance to satisfy your craving by visiting one of the world’s greatest motor shows, you will not be disappointed by any of those mentioned above.


Porsche introduces the new 918 Spyder in Frankfurt

I was able to snap these photos at the 2013 Frankfurt Motor Show as Porsche unveiled the much-anticipated 918 Spyder supercar. As you can see it’s a beautiful vehicle, but the real story here involves the plug-in hybrid engine and performance elements.

This concept was designed to be a high-performance hybrid, with 887 horsepower and the ability to accelerate from 0 to 60 mph in less than 2.8 seconds. Like the Ferrari supercar announced earlier this year, the 918 Spyder features a combustion engine combined with an electric motor-based drive to optimize the dynamic performance of the vehicle. The electric motor allows for the faster acceleration from zero and then the gas motor kicks in.

This is the new reality of supercars. They are obviously becoming much more exotic, and in a way we’re seeing a real departure from traditional sports cars with a traditional stick shift. For that reason, cars like the new Corvette that still embrace the stick shift and powerful gas engine will probably still command a legion of fans.

But for sheer performance, these new hybrid supercars will be a beast on the track.


Ferrari introduces the 458 Speciale in Frankfurt

I was on hand in Frankfurt for the 2013 Motor Show as Ferrari unveiled the new 458 Speciale. Derived from the 458 Italia, Ferrari touts the Speciale as the most high performance Ferrari V8 sports car ever. This lightweight, track-ready Ferrari is powered by the same 4.5-liter V-8 as the standard 458 Italia, but also featuring an additional 34 horsepower for a total of 596 hp. The blue and white racing strip across the top also gives it a distinctive stylistic feature as well.


Lexus LF-NX Crossover Concept will premiere in Frankfurt

Lexus will introduce a new compact crossover concept car, the LF-NX, at the 2013 Frankfurt Motor Show (IAA) this coming week. Highlights will include:

– LF-NX concept is powered by a new variant of the Lexus Hybrid Drive system tuned for SUV performance

– exterior design reflects a further evolution of Lexus’ L-finesse design language

– the front features a pretty extreme version of the Lexus spindle grille

– very muscular wheel arches

– interior mirrors the LF-NX’s highly sculpted exterior

What do you think?



SRT Viper Breaks Cover

With all the debuts at the New York Auto Show, the new SRT Viper was the one everyone was looking forward to. Right away you notice the newly refined exterior, which is still raw, but harkens back more to the original Viper. But no one was worried about how it would look, but what would be powering it.

Recent federal safety mandates, emission controls, and general market pansiness threatened to strip the Viper of its fangs (warning: more tortured snake puns ahead). However, even with traction control and all the other necessities, the Viper still looks like it will be a ludicrous drive. How ludicrous? About 650hp worth from a V-10 motor. Yup, the Viper is back.

Plus, their going back to racing too. Welcome back Viper, it’s been too long.


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