In the wake of environmental protests and tightened security, this year’s Frankfurt Motor Show is – according to the organisers – all about going green.
This show is smaller in size, with 800 exhibitors versus 994 in 2017. Equally, 168,000 square feet of exhibition space plays 200,000 two years ago.
In a statement, President of the German Association of the Automotive Industry (VDA), Bernhard Mattes, said, “Just a classical motor show is no longer able to live up to the expectations that exhibitors, visitors and society place on an event of this kind.
“In previous decades, exhibitions were used for marketing; they were places where firms presented their whole product range. But today they are increasingly becoming meeting points for dialogue, networking, integration, cooperation, new connections, and ideas about the future.”
So, Frankfurt 2019 is getting a re-brand, as “the international platform for the individual mobility of the future”.
What does that mean? According to the VDA, lots about electric mobility and digitisation, a focus on experience and interaction, plus an open conversation with those who think motor shows are out of date. Not least the protesters and lobbyists.
The era of giant stands, with every model a manufacturer makes on display, could well be over.
Indeed, many manufacturers aren’t showing up – including Subaru, Chevrolet, Volvo, Nissan and Aston Martin.
Change is afoot at one of the world’s largest and most important motor shows.