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Economy

Cleveland Auto Show opens Friday, but will there be cars there?

an exterior photo of Cleveland's I-X Center
I-X CENTER CLEVELAND
The Cleveland Auto Show returns in-person after two years amid vehicle shortages due to the coronavirus pandemic. But there will still be plenty to see at the I-X Center.

The Cleveland Auto Show is back in-person at the I-X Center after two years – even if cars aren’t as easy to find as they were before the coronavirus pandemic.

The 2020 auto show took place just before the I-X Center closed due to the pandemic. Since then, used car prices have jumped, and chip shortages have led to limited inventory for new cars. Lou Vitantonio, President of the Cleveland Auto Show, says he’d be surprised if that changes this year.

“I think it’s going to be like this for a considerable amount of time. I don’t know that we will see inventories that were pre-pandemic until – most likely – 2023, if we even get there. Demand is high, resulting in supply being short and dealerships aren’t able to build inventories.”

While the wait time to buy a new car might be higher, there will still be opportunities to test drive vehicles at the auto show, with more than a dozen makers offering indoor and outdoor test tracks and obstacle courses.

“They’re going to go through some water pits, sand, hills, and show you their off-road capabilities. And then outside the building we have nine different brands – they’ll have all kinds of vehicles you can actually drive yourself on Rt. 237 that’s next to the I-X Center.”

The Classic Car Show and Millionaire's Row also return this year.

The Cleveland Auto Show opens Friday evening.