mondial 2010.automotiveIT

More than 1.2 million visitors attended the Paris show in 2010, the last time it was held (Photo: AP)

The Paris auto show, the biggest automotive event in the second half of 2012, will take place Sept 27 through Oct. 14.

Carmakers will come to Paris against a backdrop of booming global auto sales but weakness in core European markets.

The show, which traditionally provides an opportunity for the French auto industry to showcase its new model lineup, will kick off with two press days on Sept 27 and 28. It will open to the public on the 29th.

The Paris event, which alternates with Frankfurt, is one of the biggest auto shows in the world. In 2010, 1,263,467 visitors came to the event. There were also 13,000 journalists from 103 countries.

The theme of this year's show is "The Future, now!" and the organizers say 214 brands from 18 countries have booked exhibition space. At least two brands - Mia Electric and McLaren - will be first-time exhibitors in Paris this year.

The Paris show will devote an entire hall to new mobility. Exhibitors will show electric and hybrid vehicles and the hall will feature an 11,000 square meter test track.