26. September 2013
The Frankfurt Motor Show, a.k.a., the 65th IAA, ended last Sunday. After media days ended, the coverage pretty much dried up. All of the sexy cars had been blogged and posted here, there and everywhere.
But comments by Matthias Wissmann, president of the German Association of the Automotive Industry (VDA), organizer of the event, caught my eye and are worth noting.
Wissmann emphasized that one of the themes that resonated throughout the event is “electric mobility.”
To quote him at some length:
Here’s the thing: Certainly one of the quintessential purveyors of German cars is BMW. BMW’s tagline has been for many years “The Ultimate Driving Machine.” Yet with innovative electric vehicles like the i3 and the i8, “machine” doesn’t seems to be the right word to describe what are highly advanced electronic devices.
While it may not be all that surprising that Japan-based companies like Toyota have long been at the forefront of the electrification of vehicles because that country has a long history associated with the development of consumer electronics, with companies like Panasonic, Toshiba, and Sony, it is surprising to hear the president of the VDA hold forth on the vehicle as an electronic device, one powered with electricity, one that is a connected node to the Internet.
People often talk about tipping points, when something somewhat rare becomes increasingly common.
We’re there with the electrification of the vehicle.