Car Industry

Jaguar Land Rover won't be at the 2019 Geneva Motor Show

Auto shows don't always have positive returns on investment, especially when stages cost as much as they do.

Nate Reed/Roadshow

Auto shows generally require automakers to spend well into seven figures -- even if there aren't any cars on the floor. That investment doesn't always net a positive return, so some automakers have started backing out of shows where they don't have anything huge to announce. Jaguar Land Rover is the next automaker to join this club.

Jaguar Land Rover will skip the 2019 Geneva Motor Show, reports Autocar, citing confirmation from the automaker itself. In a short statement, the two-marque OEM says that it's "looking at the effectiveness of each motor show individually" when deciding where to establish a presence.

JLR isn't even the first automaker to back out of Geneva, despite the show not taking place until March. Ford has already decided to skip it, making the point that the show's spot in March doesn't align with any new-vehicle releases Ford has planned. Volvo's not attending, either, but its reasoning is slightly different -- it would prefer to set up its own events, which will better capture the attention of potential new customers, according to Motor1.

Instead of  the new Evoque debuting in LA, it debuted in England, and it won't appear in the US until the Chicago Auto Show in February.

Land Rover

Hosting a debut event on one's own terms seems to be the most popular reason for skipping shows. Take the LA Auto Show for example -- there were some notable debuts there, for sure, but a whole bunch of stuff got crushed under the weight of the Jeep Gladiator and Rivian's electric pickup and SUV. By hosting a private event, an automaker has everyone's attention, no spotlight sharing required.

There's also the matter of money. As automakers need to balance investments in new-vehicle technologies and the cars that are making money right now, spending millions (if not tens of millions) on a flashy auto show stand is one of the first ideas in line for the guillotine.

The next major auto show is Detroit in January, and that'll be a little on the sparse side, too. In its last year as a January show (it moves to June in 2020), all three German luxury automakers -- Audi, BMW and Mercedes-Benz -- will skip the Motor City.