Most every major auto show and automotive-related event was canceled in 2020 amid the COVID-19 pandemic, but we’re slowly starting to see them coming back to the calendar. The latest is the Chicago Auto Show, which took place last February, just before the world shut down. However, it was originally planned for this spring and later delayed because of a spike in cases. Regardless, the 2021 Chicago Auto Show is now scheduled to take place at McCormick Place from July 15th-19th.
As one might expect, this year’s Chicago Auto Show will look a bit different than it has in previous years. Organizers will use the West Building as its sole inside space, with the rest of the show moving outside along part of Indiana Avenue, where attendees will be able to test-drive new vehicles.
Ford will use two parking lots outside to display the Ford Mustang Mach-E and Ford Bronco for attendees that want to get an up-close look at the two brand new models. Additionally, organizers are awaiting approval to add a dining and shopping area outside that would feature food trucks and live music.
Attendance will be limited to 10,000 people at any given time, and tickets will only be sold online this year, with set admission times that are limited to four hours per person, per day in an effort to keep crowds down. Interestingly, this announcement comes on the heels of last week’s announcement by Chicago officials that the city would allow large indoor events, but only at 25 percent capacity or 250 people total.
Regardless, the 2021 Chicago Auto Show figures to serve as a bit of a test run for other large auto shows hoping to return later this year, perhaps as indoor-only events.