Detroit Today: How the UAW strikes have shaken up the auto show

The Automotive News executive editor discusses how the auto companies have been shrinking, why the Detroit automakers are frustrated by the ongoing strikes, and how these strikes have affected attendance at the auto show. 

A floor crowded with people and cars at a past North American International Auto Show in Detroit. (Courtesy of NAIAS)

FILE - Crowds check out vehicles at a past auto show in Detroit.

The North American International Auto Show opened to the public this week, amid a historic United Auto Workers strike against Big 3 automakers General Motors, Ford and Stellantis.

Many believe it’s unfortunate timing for the show, as attendance has dropped significantly over the last decade and, this year, the UAW strikes began the same day auto show events started

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Jamie Butters is the executive editor of Automotive News and co-host of the Automotive News’ Daily Drive podcast. He says the auto show tried to increase visitor participation by moving to September, despite still not seeing much of an increased interest from the public. 

“Staying in January you are going to continue to be bullied and dominated by CES (Consumer Electronic Show), which has really become the pre-eminent auto show in North America, if not the world,” says Butters. 

Listen to Detroit Today with host Stephen Henderson weekdays from 9-10 a.m. ET on 101.9 WDET and streaming on-demand.

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    Dynamic and diverse voices. News, politics, community and the issues that define our region. Hosted by Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Stephen Henderson, Detroit Today brings you fresh and perceptive views weekdays at 9 am and 7 pm.