IAA 2019. On the way to the regional league.

On the 11. September is it time again! The IAA 2019 opens its doors. But unlike the decades before, it is no longer a world-class fair. She is on her way to the regional league. You could justify that with the Volkswagen diesel scandal and a keen eye for the environmental problems. Maybe with the reassuring Stormwho will change the industry. But that would be too easy. Because the reasons lie deeper and go back many years.

The other Swedish brand. Also Volvo is not present at the IAA 2019
The other Swedish brand. Also Volvo is not present at the IAA 2019.

Simply conquered to death?

The IAA 1993. Saab shows the new 900, Audi presents the new A8, Citroen the successor to the legendary BX series. In addition to the major manufacturers, the little ones also find their place at the leading European trade fair. Sports car legend Melkus is looking for a wider audience Hotzenblitz is decades ahead with its electric car for the city of time. The manufactory of Erich Bitter, a former Saab dealer, transforms vile Opel ware into the finest gourmet gourmet food.

In Frankfurt, the trade fair culture at that time still seems to be in order. For why does a predominantly male audience visit the IAA at all? There may be people who find a new VW Golf or an Astra exciting and therefore travel to the Main. Or a new 5er BMW. Presumably, they represent the vast majority of end users who torment through crowded halls and corridors every 2 year. But for quite a few visitors, the small, independent manufacturers are the real reason. The exotics that you do not see on every street corner, but that are so enormously important for the automotive culture.

However, the small providers disappear over the years. Saab, Lancia, Tatra, Melkus, Rover - and I also include MG, although the brand continues to exist as a Chinese undead. Instead, the German manufacturers continue to expand their presence. If the available space does not meet the demands and vanity, then a temporary hall is built for several million. Frankfurt, once the stage for a diverse automotive culture, is becoming more and more of a navel examination for German manufacturers who seem to be barely able to walk with strength.

With the absence of the little ones, the fair is always boring. I take my consequences and buy only one after-work ticket. The hours in the late afternoon are enough for a tour completely.

The SUV boredom

A few years later, I'm with a friend who works for the BMW organization. The first X5 is on the Bavarian stand, which is now larger than a glamorous country estate. Not everyone at BMW seems so happy about it. Skepticism still prevails in the sales organization. At the time, BMW stands for elegance and sportiness. The SUV is a comparatively rough block. Will it be able to find customers in Europe? The doubts are inappropriate. The X5 becomes a trendsetter and represents an unfortunate development that continues to this day.

SUVs dominate the streetscape, the segment is growing and growing. But who wants to go to the IAA because of an SUV? The offers of the manufacturers are full of it, and the development possibilities of the vehicle concept are limited in terms of design. A hood, a cabin. That was it.

No eye-catcher, no surprise, and nothing that would appeal to fine spirits. Instead of avant-garde from France, sophistication from Italy and innovation from Sweden, each packaged with style, with a few exceptions a basically bland vehicle type dominates the show. In terms of resource consumption, a catastrophe, driving dynamics and weight hardly discussed, and compared to weaker road users in the best sense of the word anti-social, the SUV category fits 100% with the zeitgeist.

China Premier League. Frankfurt regional league.

The main reason for the relegation of the IAA lies in China. Gone are the days when the Chinese had to make do with discarded European technology. The Chinese taste dictates the development of the industry, Europe is at most third-rate. Premieres are taking place today in Shanghai and Beijing. If there is still a little something left over from the plate of innovations, then Geneva comes into play. A small, fine trade fair that has preserved its culture. The IAA 2019 is primarily a show for the German automotive industry and the exhibitor list for passenger cars is depressingly short. 4 halls with new vehicles, plus a classic show, which is intended to beautify the trade fair concept. It cannot be a way into the future because it does not answer any of the open questions. In addition, the Germans save enormously. Mercedes is reducing the area by 30%, and BMW should be even more.

How do you plan to bring migrated manufacturers back to the Main in the future? They rely more and more on individual, regionally limited events and seek rapport with the customer over the Internet. The customer - manufacturer relationship will become ever closer in the future, the time of the dinosaur fairs is over. Saab, you can be sure, would not be there in 2019 either. The Swedes had long been looking for their own way. By the way, Volvo too. Gothenburg was one of the pioneers and focused on addressing regional customers at an early stage and did without the IAA.

One is not abstinent to 100%. The Polestar Performance AB, a Volvo daughter, shows presence with her electrified offer. A little Swedish individuality in the Regionalliga. After all.

13 thoughts on "IAA 2019. On the way to the regional league."

  • blank

    Mr. Hürsch is right. The photographed VOLVO looks like a true model of a 1:58 Hot Wheels model. I would never have thought that something like this would actually see the light of day. Otherwise, according to Tom's rearview mirror, hits the nail on the head. I also raise concerns as to whether the trade fair concept is still up to date in terms of virtual reality, but also in terms of sustainability.

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    In the past, I always wanted to go to the IAA, but I have never made it in time, there was always something in between and now I'm not so interested, if I want to see a new car, then I'll just do it at the dealer, if that Car is already in the showroom.
    The way in which Volvo presents its cars, for example in Vienna in front of the skating rink on Rathausplatz, is also interesting and quite different from fairs

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    The article wins out tremendously if you take the time to read it thoroughly and let it sink.
    Quasi against the zeitgeist mentioned. Well written and too much for “anti-social” consumer behavior
    pity and content.

    The picture for the post is as always well chosen. About the sense and nonsense of some SUVs or SUVs
    Maybe you could argue. At the latest, an SUV coupe without ground clearance, without AHK, without cargo capacity
    or any other utility value is finally the pure and unclouded symbol for the maximum
    Pointlessness ...

    Do I sow in this thing, I wear a mask. And I would park it mind. 4 Km from
    Home away. It would therefore not even suitable for purchases. A Volvo.
    A Swede. As useless and as annoying as a goiter on the neck.
    Incomprehensible …

    From today's perspective, the SUVs of the first hour seem to me
    like serious tools. Who would have seen it?
    the first X5 thought, what else and everything
    from whom this would come? ? ?

    Damn hard Tobacco.

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    I was in the 80er and 90er years more often in Frankfurt on the IAA (most recently 1997) and have since lost interest. Especially because of the SUVs and the Chinese-related flavors in the design. If you see, for example, that a once so beautiful sedan as the BMW 7er (I drive next to my Saab 900-I Convertible Bj 1992 meanwhile an E38 Bj 2000) is systematically botched and recently received another 40% enlarged kidney In order to be successful in the Chinese market, I do not know what I wanted to see at such fairs yet.

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      Unfortunately, the development is like that. European brands were once characterized by quality design. Today, with some providers, BMW unfortunately belongs to, the focus on Chinese claims obviously. In principle, there is little difference between what domestic companies offer in China and what Europeans do. Medium term, a dangerous thing, because the differences disappear more and more and brand identity is sacrificed without necessity. Even for a strong brand, this can become a serious threat.

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        The strong German brands are a motorist, who continues after a fatal heart attack a few hundred meters before he crashes into the guardrail.
        It is megalomania with fantasies of eternity and omnipotence in good times, idiotic irresponsible abandonment of technology to the Chinese, Marxist green policy against the car as a prosperity factor and the criminal will to cheat the exhaust, which broke the neck at the end of the last remaining global leading industry from Germany Has. They had already completed the hydrogen car for 20 years and then did nothing more, because the SUVs were so geilomatic.
        And a pity that the politically responsible GDR woman and ex-squatter will then be in exile for a long time, the misery would certainly please her.

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          You think that Mrs. A. Merkel will follow E. Honecker into exile,
          there in peace and seclusion a Marxist motivated
          and successful betrayal of the CDU, Western democracy, at the
          Relatively free market economy and the German auto industry to savor in peace
          can ? ? ?

          Please write this book. I will read it with the greatest pleasure
          and have a great time. I have been longing for one for some time
          Reading material that is creative, fictional and beyond good and evil (but for that
          all the more entertaining) of reunification and the
          Action hanging on the person of Merkel.

          This is a really great stuff. Make something of it!
          And do not give away too much before. Otherwise it will
          nothing from the bestseller and its film adaptation.

          Would be a pity. The teaser is great
          and very entertaining ...

        • blank

          ... not "for cheating", but "for cheating" ......

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    I have not been to a fair for years, actually the last IAA 2008 was with the presentation of the Turbo X,

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    Everything has it's time. For me, it is the market forces of the VW group that made it boring. Always the same technique, just another brand name on the sheet. The Americans had that too. Did not go well.

    • blank

      Good comment.

      Full approval - at least almost ...
      I would like to expand the circle of guilty parties.

      The Volkswagen Group certainly has a pioneering role.
      There is a V6 a W12 and fits in the Golf or in a what synonymous
      always. A V8 is a W16 for the Bugatti and the last Audi A4 is the next one
      Premium SEAT and so on ...

      But for other corporations times just the last BMW to Mini.
      30 cm more wheelbase and 10 cm more gauge? Who cares?

      Just make the logos, headlights, taillights
      and whatever (outside mirrors?) a little bit bigger and
      the proportions are already preserved ...

      And if I'm not mistaken, then stand at Mercedes
      from the A to the C-Class meanwhile all models on one platform.

      If this continues, then an 5er BMW is the mini of tomorrow and
      an S-Class the new Smart ForFour ...

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    Too bad for the IAA and, above all, a pity for the visitors and lovers of fairs. It seems to me that the IAA, like Baselworld (once the world's most important watch and jewelery fair), has gone the way of all fairs that have not been able to adapt to the public and their wishes.

    It is not the SUVs that have driven the IAA to the wall, it is the lack of variety that has come about as a result of the concentration among manufacturers, whether they are cars or watches. Since the platform strategy, which most manufacturers maintain, has probably even overtaken.

    Who knows, maybe one of the exhibition centers will have the courage to set up a trade fair only for the small and exotic manufacturers. An ArtBasel or ArtMiami with an extended audience, so to speak. It would be nice and I would even go to an auto show again.

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    That will also be the reason why manufacturers want power in electric mobility. Even bigger engines, even more horsepower does not work anymore. Or at least not right now. Maybe it will come back, there have been many cheers on the car. Only at the moment there is not really something really exciting new.

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