It was inevitable that the National Automobile Dealers Association and its board would ultimately have to take their 2021 NADA Show virtual. As we presaged in June, the health and safety of members, exhibitors and guests is too important — and the coronavirus too stubborn — to continue on in January with business as usual.
Taking the show online will no doubt disappoint many who are eager to resume traditions and see old friends.
But just as the pandemic has transformed the way autos are retailed, this show presents a golden opportunity for NADA and its members to modernize, democratize and revitalize this industry's most important annual trade show.
NADA has started its planning on the right foot, lowering the price of admission for dealers and their key managers to attend the virtual conference. Those who might have been frozen out by travel costs will be able to participate in training to improve their skills and job performance.