After two cancellations in 2020 and 2021, the Geneva motor show will return cautiously in 2022 with a reduced edition, its managing director Sandro Mesquita told AFP on Thursday.
This major meeting of the sector, which usually brings together more than 600,000 people, should welcome half of them in 2022, according to Mr. Mesquita, who took the head of the Geneva International Motor Festival (GIMS) in 2020.
This ‘extremely conservative’ scenario takes into account the precautions linked to the pandemic, which limit access to people vaccinated, tested or cured, and impose a gauge of 10,000 people at the same time in the Palexpo in Geneva.
The GIMS, however, wants to remain ‘a popular fair’, where the ‘visitor is also an actor’, with events, testing areas and debates open to the public, as well as a space dedicated to video games, said Mr. Mesquita.
Faced with the ecological emergency and the transformation of the sector, “we consider that the automobile is always a dream,” said the Director General of GIMS.
While the Frankfurt Motor Show moved this year to Munich with a concept open to all types of mobility, and the American High Mass in Detroit is losing momentum against the Las Vegas Electronics Show, the GIMS wants to stand out by ‘remaining a motor show’.
‘There will be no bikes, scooters, drones. It corresponds to our DNA, to who we are. It also corresponds to a conviction: we need a platform for the automobile ‘, underlined Sandro Mesquita.
The area of the show has decreased by 20% compared to that planned for 2020, and 60% of the available areas are reserved for the moment. ‘2022 will be a year of transition, of restart,’ said the general manager. ‘We feel that the brands want to return to physical platforms, but they will be selective’.
Like most major public events around the world, the 2020 edition of the show was canceled at the last minute due to the health crisis linked to Covid-19. The 2021 show has also been canceled, with brands unwilling to engage in an uncertain backdrop.
In great financial difficulty, the show’s management has found a new balance with the creation of a new show in Qatar, the first edition of which should take place in the fall of 2022 or 2023. It also intends to broadcast, against payment, the events planned on the main stage of the living room.