Wissmann The IAA stands for “Future now”

Berlin, 11 September 2017

A glittering display of premieres setting a new record: 363 innovations including 228 world premieres – number of European premieres has more than doubled – focus on digitization, urban mobility and electric mobility – around 1,000 exhibitors from 39 countries – New Mobility World with many IT and technology firms

Ladies and Gentlemen,

It is my pleasure to welcome you very warmly to the IAA’s opening press conference.

We are about to begin the 67th IAA Cars. Today is the last construction day, tomorrow the Press Days will start, and on Thursday we have the IAA’s opening ceremony with Chancellor Angela Merkel.

This IAA is taking place in unusual times. The public and political mood is extremely challenging. The trade journal “Automobilwoche” hit the nail on the head in its leader article: “No previous IAA has ever been more politically charged.” That was a reference not only to the Bundestag election campaign but also to the heated debate over diesels in recent weeks.

The discussion urgently needs to become more objective, especially regarding the uncertainty among drivers in Germany. The diesel summit at the beginning of August showed solutions for the way forward.

Modern diesels are indispensable for achieving Europe’s ambitious CO2 targets. The new real driving emissions (RDE) will complete the work on reducing nitrogen oxide emissions. Gasoline vehicles will also remain on the agenda and will continue to be optimized.

No-one should conclude that we are trying to cling to the “good old days” because we are not looking to the future. Quite the opposite is the case! For us, learning from one’s mistakes means pushing forward the topics for the future!

This IAA stands for a fundamental paradigm shift that is currently taking place in the companies – both in products and in production. The huge importance of digitization is visible to everyone here at the IAA. No other trade fair provides so much orientation for this megatrend, because it shows for the first time all the great advantages of digitization:

  • marked improvement in road safety and considerable reduction in the accident figures
  • minimized time-consuming search for a parking space in towns and cities
  • considerable improvement in the traffic flow, less stop-and-go traffic
  • and associated with that: lower pollutant emissions, lower CO2 emissions, lower fuel consumption.

It will also be important to integrate the various modes of transport within cities – cars, bicycles, buses, taxis and railways, and of course car-sharing. Overall, digitization offers excellent opportunities for mastering the mobility challenges in cities. By 2020, the German automotive industry will be investing 16 to 18 billion euros in connected and automated driving.

Parallel to that, we have the second major innovation trend – the ramp-up of alternative powertrains. To this end, by 2020 we will invest 40 billion euros, and the number of models will more than treble from today’s 30 to over 100.

The cars of the future will be automated, connected and emission-free.

The IAA’s overall concept – which can be experienced at the exhibitors’ stands just as it can at the New Mobility Word, which I will come back to in a moment – is triggering a completely new identity for motor shows. It directs attention a long way forward – and simultaneously it is the international discussion forum on the mobility of tomorrow.

This year’s IAA comes at precisely the right time. It offers the automotive industry the best opportunity for approaching the general public right now, to show exactly what it can do. It showcases the entire range of innovations in the fields of mobility, from digitization and electric mobility all the way to new mobility concepts, especially in urban settings. That is precisely what the slogan of this IAA – “Future now” – stands for.

This IAA brings together all the players who shape the mobility of the future. No other motor show has such a strong focus on digitization as the IAA. The largest IT and technology firms are clearly visible here in Frankfurt:

  • Facebook is the New Mobility World Partner – COO Sheryl Sandberg will speak at the IAA’s opening ceremony.
  • Google is Platinum Partner of the Media Night that will be held on the evening of the first Press Day.
  • Carlo D’Asaro Biondo, President of Southern & Eastern Europe, Middle East and Africa Operations at Google Inc., will be the keynote speaker at the Media Night.
  • SAP and Google are prominently represented at the New Mobility World.
  • The chip giant Qualcomm is also exhibiting at the IAA/New Mobility World, and its CEO Steve Mollenkopf will deliver a keynote speech.

The other IT and technology companies at the IAA include, for example, BlaBlaCar, Harman, IBM, International Industries, Kaspersky, Merck, NXP, Siemens, Sony, TomTom, Telekom, Allianz and McKinsey, and of course the Daimler subsidiaries Moovel, MyTaxi and Car2Go, along with the VW subsidiary MOIA.

To summarize: large technology and IT firms are using the IAA specifically as a platform. This underscores the IAA’s standing as a leading international trade show.

Like the automobile itself, trade shows have to re-invent themselves over and over. The IAA highlights just how the world of mobility is changing. As the organizer of the IAA Cars, the VDA has been consistently developing the world’s most important trade show for mobility for many years. The vehicle makers long ago started seeing themselves as mobility service providers, and they invest heavily in digitization and electric mobility.

The New Mobility World at the IAA offers an additional format for all new players in the world of mobility. It brings together innovators from all sectors, who develop new solutions, technologies or products for the mobility of tomorrow and beyond. In all, over 250 companies and organizations are represented at the New Mobility World. The most innovative international startups are competing against one another in the NMW Lab17 startup contest. The New Mobility World has several different presentation formats in Hall 3.1 and will run until September 17. This makes it the large, international discussion forum on the exciting forward-looking topics of mobility.

Visitors can experience the New Mobility World not only in the hall, but also on the central open-air site, called the “Agora.” It has a large outdoor area for the action program, where manufacturers and suppliers will demonstrate automated and digitized driving programs. The participating firms are Audi, Daimler, Volkswagen and the major suppliers Bosch, Continental and ZF. Those who define the mobility of the future are at the IAA Cars!

We are accordingly breaking new ground with the IAA’s visitor advertising that centers on people and their questions about the future, and what they want and require from the mobility of tomorrow. This can be experienced at the opening event on Thursday.

The VDA has been implementing its strategy for the IAA for many years: consistently international and digital. We are the ones who set the trend, and we have done the pioneering work here. Other motor shows have followed our lead. We continue to organize the IAA so that in Frankfurt what belongs together grows together. Around 1,000 exhibitors – 994 to be precise – from 39 countries are at the IAA, which is a very good figure.

The exhibition space comes to nearly 200,000 square meters. This year, we have slightly less space on the open-air site than we had in 2015 because the previous outdoor area is now a construction site where the new Hall 12 will be built in time for the next IAA in 2019.

One criterion in particular points up the attractiveness of this IAA: the number of premieres, of innovations and new developments. At our web press conference at the end of August I spoke of “more than 300 innovations.” Today I can give you the final figures:

This IAA presents a total of 363 innovations. That is 52 more than two years ago – and sets a new record.

They are made up of the following:

  • 228 world premieres – a new record (in 2015 we had 219),
  • 64 European premieres – which is more than double the 2015 figure (27),
  • 32 German premieres – equaling the high level in 2015 (33),
  • 39 research studies (2015: 32).

That means: this IAA offers a glittering display of innovations like no other trade fair.

I am sure that all visitors who are enthusiastic about mobility and automobiles, people who have a general interest in mobility, and those who have so far been skeptical, can look forward to a wonderful, very exciting IAA!

Once again, over 50 brands of passenger cars have registered for the IAA, including the largest car makers from Europe, the US and Asia. McLaren is returning to the IAA (Agora) after a break of many years.

Furthermore, new Chinese manufacturers (WEY and Chery) are at the IAA for the first time. They have specifically chosen this leading trade fair for their presentations, which underscores the international reputation and attractiveness of the IAA. And that is still increasing: for the first time exhibitors are joining us from Egypt, Finland and Peru.

Several hundred suppliers are exhibiting at the IAA, including returning firms such as the ThyssenKrupp group (that last exhibited in 2007) and BorgWarner (that last participated in 2011). Only the IAA shows on such a comprehensive scale the innovations and the performance of suppliers from all over the world, which account for 75 percent of a vehicle’s value creation.

And there’s more: no other trade show has a larger international media presence – well over 10,000 journalists from around 100 countries will report on the IAA. As of last Friday, over 9,600 media representatives had been accredited. Half of them come from abroad, and among those China takes first place with more than 400 journalists, followed by France, Italy, the UK and Japan.

I would just like to summarize: the IAA lives up to its slogan of “Future now”!

The IAA 2017 is facing up to the new challenges: as much disruption, innovation and dialog as possible! The most important mobility trade fair in the world has long since developed into more than simply a motor show. It reflects the large number of facets, players and opportunities in the mobility of tomorrow. This puts a firm focus on digitization, urban mobility and the alternative powertrains.

So this will be an IAA like no previous one. It will be more exciting, more surprising, more inspiring and more innovative than ever before!

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