Going to the Frankfurt Motor Show! September 18th, 2009
By John Shim, Assistant Manager
Research & Development Planning Team
[Preview] Sept.14 (Mon): Flying from Incheon to Frankfurt!
Hello to all my Kia BUZZ mates!
It’s been a long time since my last post but I’m super thrilled to bring you some very exciting and fun news.
I’m actually writing this from outside Korea. Frankfurt, Germany to be more precise. I have been assigned with the task of covering the Frankfurt Motor Show for Kia BUZZ.
When I arrived at Frankfurt International Airport earlier today and was waiting for my bags, I saw ads for Kia cee’d and Soul on the luggage carts. It felt really good to see them, especially the ad for the new Venga which will be unveiled at the motor show.
It was a rainy and cool day here in Frankfurt. I’ve unpacked my bags and am looking forward to tomorrow, when we’ll have a preview event for the media. We’ll also be able to see the debut of concept cars and new models from famous automakers around the world. Should be awesome!
[Day-2-1] Sept. 15 (Tues.): The world’s largest motor show opens its doors today!
At 6am my eyes opened. The room seemed unfamiliar at first but a second later, I remembered that I wasn’t in Seoul. Then suddenly felt a surge of excitement because I was going to go to the Frankfurt Motor Show.
I got ready right away, had a big breakfast and then took the bus to the motor show venue. It was still early morning but the bus was already packed with people going to the press conference.
We finally arrived at Messe-Frankfurt. The slogan for this year’s show is “A Moving Experience” and visitors are offered many attractions and activities that are literally moving. The Frankfurt Motor Show, also known as the International Motor Show (IAA), is now in its 63rd year. With some 60 automakers participating, it is the world’s largest motor show. After today’s press conference that’s only open to the media, the 2009 show will run from September 19 (Saturday) to 27 (Sunday). The massive exhibit is spread out over 11 halls. It’s so big that even if you took a car, it’d take 5 minutes to drive from Hall 1 to Hall 11.
When I first arrived at the site, the sheer size of the exhibit blew me away.
No wonder it’s called the world’s largest motor show,
[Day-2-2] Sept. 15 (Tues) : Go! Go! Venga! Venga! (Kia Motors press conference)
I arrived at the site for Kia’s press conference at 12:30, half an hour before it was due to start. The place was already packed! There was hardly any standing room left. The signboard showed that the conference would start at 1:00pm. This turnout bodes well~!
The opening countdown signaled the start of the conference. There was an excited sense of anticipation in the air as the promotional videos for the new look cee’d and all-new Sorrento were shown.
After the videos, Panu Vainamo from Kia Motors Eurpe, Marketing made opening remarks and Kia Motors Corporation President Hank Lee took the stage to introduce the company’s environmental brand, EcoDynamics. He also gave a very ‘to-the-point’ presentation on Kia’s current and future strategy for green vehicles.
Then the newly appointed COO of KME Paul Philpott gave an overview of KME and unveiled the cee’d and Sorrento. I felt chills all over my body when the two models emerged. Judging by the crowd’s reaction to the stylish and environmentally friendly cars, I feel confident they will be a knockout success in the European market!
Finally, it was time to pull the covers off Venga. After a showing of the introductory video, Chief Design Officer Peter Schreyer came out riding the Venga and then talked about its design. The front of the car is defined by the signature tiger nose grille while diverse specs like the panorama roof hail a new era of MPVs.
After a photo opportunity for reporters, the press conference came to an end. Although it didn’t last very long, it seemed to have left a major impression.
Reporters and other personnel lingered behind at the Kia booth even after the press conference was over. The Venga attracted a lot of attention. I also sensed a bright future ahead for Kia with the cee’d hybrid and other eco-friendly models.
I hope this posting satisfies your curiosity about the Frankfurt Motor Show, at least partially. I tried my best to paint a vivid picture of the event and capture some of the mood. That’s all for me now. This is John Shim, Kia BUZZ, Frankfurt.