Porsche and Suzuki rarely come up in the same breath, but here is something they both share: neither will be in Cobo Hall when the Detroit Auto Show opens in January. Joining the Stuttgart sportscar/SUV/SUS maker in skipping the show, Suzuki has said that they are pulling out for a slightly different reason. Whereas Porsche had said that Detroit wasn't a very important market for them, Suzuki is saying they didn't like the space they were offered. Here, Suzuki is hitting closer to what many people feel is the real problem with Cobo, there just isn't enough room. It's a fine hall with a storied past, and as a journalist it's nice to be able to get to any press conference within a minute from the media center, but it's not very big compared to the other halls around the world. With a name like "2009 North American International Auto Show" it needs more square-footage. It's still the most important auto show in the country, if not the world, and maybe losing Suzuki and Porsche don't hurt it too much, but this move by Suzuki could be marking a trend that can only be stopped with a major expansion. Back in January, we mentioned that a plan is being formulated to expand Cobo Hall, but the project is still in the financing stage as far as we know. Hopefully something can be done before long to save this great show's reputation.
[Source: Detroit News]