German OEMs EV and PHEV concepts, SUVs, and high-performance cars

Geneva International Motor Show 2018 (1): Mercedes-Benz, BMW, and VW



The 88th Geneva Motor Show held March 8-18, 2018 was a gorgeous event, bringing together the finest quality vehicles from around the world. The exhibition center was well attended by car enthusiasts and automotive industry people from the neighboring cities and countries of Europe and globally. As many as 10,700 media and industry stakeholders gathered for the press day events. More than 180 exhibitors participated in this year's show, which drew over 660,000 visitors (4.5% fewer than 2017) to the display venues in the 6 exhibition halls. It is worth noting that the show's participation was dominated by visitors primarily from European countries such as Switzerland, France, Italy, and Germany, and that visitor participation was comprised of 80% of individuals from the active life target market segment (19 to 64 years old), and 30% were young people (15 to 29 years old). The popularity of the event for young people can be attributed to the event organizer's digital communication strategy using SNS, with the event organizer stating that its efforts demonstrated that young people have come to realize again that cars are an important aspect of life.

(Left image: Event organizer publicity material)
(Right image) Since last year, Europe has endured unseasonable weather such as heavy snow, heavy rain, and flooding, and the mid-March days in Geneva were a mixture of cold rain mixed with the elegant scenery of the water spouting from the Jet d'Eau fountain at Lake Leman.

Schematic outline of the show venue

(Left image: Event organizer publicity material)

Overview of the European car market

In 2017, 15.57 million units were sold in the European passenger car market, up 3.1% over the previous year, and the highest vehicle sales volume since 2007. Some stagnation was seen for the U.K. market in 2017, but overall growth resulted from strong sales in Eastern Europe (up 12.7%) and Southern Europe (up 6.2%). Interestingly, sales of diesel-powered vehicles fell 7.9% to 6.76 million units, resulting in the lowest market share for diesel vehicles in the past 10 years at 43.7%. At the same time, the sales of gasoline-powered vehicles increased by 780,000 units. Reasons for this include the fact that both Britain and France have issued regulatory policies to ban the sale of diesel and gasoline-powered vehicles from 2040, as well as the negative impact on the market image and sales of diesel vehicles brought about by the emissions fraud scandal at VW. Also, there are concerns that growth of the European automobile market has been slowing as a result of factors such as the Brexit issue.

In 2017, the sales growth of electric vehicles was strong, with sales volumes increasing 46.1% y/y to about 740,000 units, although the share of these alternative fuel vehicles comprises less than 5% of the total market. Electric vehicles (EV) were displayed at this year's Geneva Motor Show, but there were also a great number of plug-in hybrid vehicles (PHEV) exhibited.

Related Reports:
2021-2030 CO2 regulations in Europe, backlash against diesel, and electrification(May 2018)
OEM Electrification Strategies: Acceleration of EV and PHV Lineup Expansion(Apr. 2018)
BMW Electrification: Aims to launch 12 EV models by 2025(Apr. 2018)
North American International Auto Show 2018: European OEMs(Feb. 2018)
CES 2018: Growing prevalence of electric vehicles(Jan. 2018)

Geneva International Motor Show 2017
Mercedes-Benz, VW, Audi, and Porsche (May 2017)
BMW, Opel, Volvo, Ford, PSA and more (May 2017)