AutoRevista- How is this new "normalised" edition being presented after a few years distorted by the effects of the pandemic and the acute semiconductor crisis?
Enrique Lacalle.- The next edition of Automobile Barcelona is presented with very good prospects. It is the edition with the passion, enthusiasm and sustainability with which Barcelona has become the standard-bearer for automotive shows in Europe.
The show will grow in number of brands, as we will have 27 car manufacturers, five more than in 2022, and visitors will be able to enjoy live world and European premieres. As a platform for expression of the sector itself, electrified vehicles will be the protagonists of a show that does not renounce any type of motorisation. But we will also have Motoh! Barcelona, which will complement the two-wheeled universe with the whole Automobile offer, as well as a good number of brands from the new mobility sectors. If you'll pardon the expression, it will be the most democratic Automobile in history, with more vehicles, all kinds of engines, for all budgets and all kinds of needs. It is an event that no enthusiast should miss.
AR.- Although the prominence of electric models is becoming more and more important, does the show also have to take into account the factor of technological neutrality with low-emission combustion solutions and hybrids?
E.L.- Electrification and decarbonisation are already a reality. The European Commission itself announced the end of the sale of cars with combustion engines by 2035. Cars with electric, hybrid or hydrogen cell propulsion have been present at the Barcelona event for some time now. In fact, they have been gaining in importance at each edition and this will continue to be the case at this edition. As President of Automobile Barcelona, I am clearly in favour of sustainable mobility. The show's clear commitment to electrified vehicles is a clear example of this. In this sense, we believe that the automobile is a key element in any future mobility model. In fact, most of the multimodal mobility proposals include the automobile in them and we are therefore convinced that the efforts being made by the industry to ensure that cars eliminate emissions and are powered by renewable energy sources will consolidate its role in these future models.
AR.- How do you foresee the arrival of Chinese brands that are gradually making their way into European markets?
E.L- One of the features that have traditionally characterised Barcelona and, by extension, the show, is that they are cosmopolitan and very open places. In this sense, Automobile Barcelona is the best gateway for many of these brands and we are delighted that they have chosen our show for their presentation to the general public. Chinese brands will play an increasingly important role and therefore their participation is another reflection of the evolution of the automotive sector itself.
AR.- What does the renewal of the alliance with ANFAC until 2027 mean?
E.L- It means guaranteeing the continuity of a history of joint successes. Successes both for the city and the country, as well as for the sector. There is no better platform to promote the automotive industry than a show that yesterday, today and tomorrow will continue to bring together industry, brands, institutions, professionals and enthusiasts in an environment full of opportunities for all. And in this sense, I would like to thank ANFAC and the show for the complicity that has always existed between the show and ANFAC.
AR- What are your expectations in terms of increasing the number of young visitors interested in different solutions for sustainable, safe and connected electromobility?
E.L- Automobile Barcelona is a centenary show because it has always shown itself to be capable of reinventing itself and evolving with the sector itself. In this sense, the 2023 edition will be an example of this. We will have around 30 car brands, but we will also have many others from neighbouring sectors that form part of the great field of mobility. To begin with, Automobile Barcelona will include the Motoh! show, which will focus on the world of two-wheelers and will bring together an extraordinary representation of the main motorbike brands. We will also have spaces dedicated to new vehicles for personal, urban and sustainable mobility. So whatever mobility option you are interested in, whatever your age and whatever your budget, you will find what you are looking for at Automobile Barcelona.
AR- What are the keys to the evolution of Automobile Barcelona in a context in which the Geneva Motor Show is going to be held in Qatar, Frankfurt has ceded its place to Munich and Paris has not been at its best?
E.L- The ability to adapt, to transform as the sector itself does. I am often asked what the secret is for a centenary show like ours to continue to be among the most important, and the answer is our ability to reinvent ourselves hand in hand with the sector, responding to the market and knowing that the world of motoring is both passion and necessity.
AR.- How does Automobile Barcelona link up with a near-future scenario with projects in vogue in Catalonia such as Future: Fast Forward, Silence, QEV Technologies or Wallbox, among others?
E.L- Automobile Barcelona has been, is and will continue to be a great showcase for innovations and products in the sector. The existence of these projects and the development of many others fits perfectly with the profile and orientation of Automobile Barcelona and of the city and the country itself. In fact, some of these companies, such as Silence and Wallbox, are already exhibitors at the 2023 edition, so the role of a major industrial platform is consolidated year after year with the presence of historical companies, but also with the participation of some of the most promising young companies in the field of the automotive and mobility in the broadest sense.
AR.- In AutoRevista, we have learned that Automobile Barcelona will host the premiere of the PAC prototype, a bet on the future of a consortium of the Portuguese automotive industry, how do you assess this type of bet and what other disruptive projects does the show also want to host?
E.L- Barcelona has been the cradle of the automotive industry in Spain and is now one of the driving forces behind the new mobility. The fact that a group of companies, immersed in a project to promote a new proposal, choose Automobile Barcelona as an international showcase to present a new vehicle ratifies one of the event's raisons d'être. We want to be a loudspeaker for companies in the automotive industry, large and small, to explain all the innovations and proposals they are working on and for these innovations to help transform and define the future of mobility. In this sense, we are open to collaborate and help to project all the initiatives that work in this sense, both in this and future editions.
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