Detroit will hang on to the North American International Auto Show for at least another five years.
The deal signed today by auto show and Cobo Center officials should reverse years of suggestions that show sponsors might take their business elsewhere.
"It is our way of saying: 'Detroit, we are with you,'" said Bill Perkins, chairman of the 2012 show.
A regional authority took control of Cobo away from the city two years ago. The move paved the way a $278 million renovation of the aging facility. Perkins says those renovations will put the facility on par with other top global venues, "helping us to maintain our position on the world auto stage as the show at which to introduce new and exciting vehicles."
The renovation is under way that will add space to Cobo and open views to the Detroit River. The facility is also getting new loading docks and other amenities. The auto dealers who put on the show had warned the city could lose the auto show if renovations were not made.
The show opens to the public January 14.