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IAA history

The International Motor Show IAA in Germany - Ignition Sparks and Milestones

1897
First IAA held at the Hotel Bristol in Berlin.
1897–1911
The IAA became a fixed event in Germany, with at least one held every year, usually in Berlin; in 1905, 1906 and 1907 there were two. The automobile was now socially accepted, and production was on an industrial level.
1921
The first IAA in Berlin since World War I, and the 14th since counting began. Sixty-seven automobile manufacturers showed 90 motor car and 49 HGV models. This IAA revolved around “comfort”.
1931
Despite the still perceptible after-effects of the global recession, the 22nd IAA was held in Berlin. A total of 295,000 visitors were recorded. For the first time exhibition included front-wheel drive vehicles.
1939
The last IAA before the outbreak of World War II was held in Berlin. This, the 29th IAA, saw an all-time record of 825,000 visitors. The new “Volkswagen” was presented for the first time. The “strength through joy motor car” later went down in automobile history as the “Beetle”.
1947–1949
Germany’s automobile and accessories manufacturers took part in the export trade fair in Hannover. The automobile industry’s hall acted like a magnet on the public.
1951
For the first time ever, an automobile exhibition was held on the trade fair site in Frankfurt. This major event, which took place in April, attracted 570,000 visitors. The exhibits included the first HGV to have a turbo diesel engine. Just six months later, in September, a second automobile exhibition in Berlin attracted 290,000 visitors. With this, the 35th IAA, the German automobile industry bade farewell to its traditional exhibition site and relocated completely to Frankfurt on the Main. From now on the IAA took place every other year.
1956
The motor car celebrated its 70th birthday. Vehicle production in the Federal Republic of Germany broke the million-mark for the first time. Some 302,000 people were employed in the automobile industry. Germany’s vehicle manufacturers were second only to the USA in world production. Cars “made in Germany” became the export hit. Almost every second vehicle built in Germany was sold abroad.
1961
The 40th IAA on the exhibition site in Frankfurt was visited by 950.000 people – a new IAA record. The breakthrough to mass motoring had been achieved. Occupant safety was the key issue in many motor car presentations. The safety belt was one of the highlights at the exhibition.
1965
A Japanese company presented its motor cars for the first time at an IAA.
1969
The 44th IAA was overshadowed by the topic of “delivery dates”. The economic slump was overcome, and Germany’s automobile industry began to florish again.
1977
Germany’s automobile manufacturers were on course for a new production record. For the first time, over 4 million vehicles were built. The IAA was a symbol of the increasing confidence of Germany’s automobile industry.
1981
“Saving energy” was the watchword at the 49th IAA. The economy and low fuel consumption of the new models were emphasised. However, the IAA was also seen as the signal for a “limited economic upturn”.
1989
The last IAA to feature both cars and commercial vehicles confirmed that the exhibition site in Frankfurt was now too small for this major event. Almost 2,000 exhibitors squeezed onto an exhibition site measuring 252,000 square metres. More than 1.2 million visitors attended the event. Because of the high demand, it was no longer possible to meet exhibitors’ requirements for adequate exhibition stands. In view of this, the VDA decided to hold two IAAs from now on.
1991
The IAA was first subdivided in two in 1991. In odd-numbered years the IAA Passenger Cars is held in Frankfurt; even-numbered years see the IAA Commercial Vehicles in Hannover. The first “pure” IAA Passenger Cars was huge success. A total of 1,271 exhibitors from 43 countries displayed their new products and innovations on an exhibition site of some 200,000 square metres. With more than 935,000 visitors, the IAA Passenger Cars was extremely well attended.
1992
The first IAA Commercial Vehicles saw 1,284 exhibitors from 29 countries. The exhibition site measured 252,000 square metres. Some 287,000 people visited this IAA, 66 per cent of them were trade visitors. This confirmed that the VDA’s decision to split the event in two was right.
1999
The motto of the last IAA of the old millennium was “The car: meeting place for the future”. Manufacturers and suppliers showed how they had prepared for the challenges of the new millennium. The innovations under the bonnet in particular revealed just how seriously the automobile industry takes environmental protection. Thanks to developments in drive systems and engines, cars are cheaper and cleaner to run than ever before.
2000
Because of the EXPO 2000 in Hannover, the 58th IAA Commercial Vehicles was held in Frankfurt. The number of exhibitors increased for the third time in a row – this time there were 1,318 companies from 42 countries. The proportion of trade visitors continued to increase and totalled 84 percent.
2001
The September 11 terror attack on the World Trade Center in New York cast a shadow over the IAA in Frankfurt. The exhibition went ahead all the same. As a mark of solidarity with the victims and their dependants, all show elements and loud music as well as the official opening ceremony with the Federal Chancellor were cancelled. VDA President Gottschalk explained this decision: “Because we could not permit terrorist forces to take away our freedom of action. And because, as a key international sector, we have a responsibility not to allow things to grind to a halt.” In an impressive manner, the general public confirmed that this indeed was the right decision to take: More than 800,000 people visited this “quiet IAA”.
2002
The 59th International Motor Show (IAA) Commercial Vehicles exceeded all expectations despite the difficult situation on the market. Around 237,000 visitors from 84 countries showed just how attractive this International Motor Show is. The proportion of professional visitors is over 90 per cent. In spite of the tough economic situation, seven out of ten professional visitors said that the reason for their visit to the IAA was preparation for making investment decisions or even for concluding contracts. This signaled an upturn in the mood in the commercial vehicle industry.
2003
The 60th International Motor Show (IAA) Passenger Cars broke all previous records for visitor numbers. Over a million car afficinados on site in Frankfurt turned this IAA into the most visited one since 1991, when the IAA took place subdividedly for the first time - still under the strong influence of the reunification boom. 23 per cent more visitors than 2001 flocked to see products displayed by some 2,000 exhibitors from 42 nations on a total of 215,000 square metres of exhibition space.
2004
The 60th IAA Commercial Vehicles in Hannover confirmed once again its position as the world’s leading transport trade fair. Under the title “A Mobile Future”, it proved its importance as a driving force for the entire industry with a record number of new vehicles and innovations. Exhibitors presented a total of 194 world premieres – 25 per cent more than in 2002 – as well as 61 European and 54 German premieres. The total of 1,370 exhibitors from almost every continent set a new record. The IAA Commercial Vehicles had developed from a straightforward product exhibition to a fully integrated trade fair, covering the entire value-added chain for mobility, transport and logistics.
2005
In terms of sheer quality, the 61st International Motor Show Passenger Cars was the best IAA ever, focusing strongly on future solutions such as the hybrid, hydrogen, flex-fuel and SCR technologies for reducing nitrogen oxide emissions. In terms of the area used, and the number of professional visitors and exhibitors, it deserved to be regarded as ‘excellent’. The number of guests reached 940,000, the second highest figure ever, and it would probably have broken the record if there had not been the federal election plus Sunday Trading in Frankfurt’s inner city during the trade fair.
2006
The 61st IAA Commercial Vehicles was a Motor Show of superlatives. It has set new records in all important areas. Its 253 world premieres represent more innovation than ever before. Progress in the fields of the environment and safety in particular present a new image for the whole industry. There were 1,556 satisfied exhibitors from 46 countries, who benefited from the IAA: more agreements and more orders than ever before. New country focuses indicate the increasing internationalization of the commercial vehicle business. This new aspect attracted 265,500 visitors to the 61st IAA, which is more than any previous IAA Commercial Vehicles.
2007
The 62nd IAA was definitely one of the most successful IAAs ever. With nearly 1 million visitors from 125 countries, this IAA has even exceeded the very good result from the year 2005. This IAA has been more political and international than any other before. Climate change, fuel efficiency and CO2 reductions have determined the political topics. Of the 1,081 exhibitors, 42 per cent came from abroad.
2008
The 62nd IAA Commercial Vehicles is the most successful commercial vehicle trade fair so far. It has set new standards in all ‘disciplines’ and more than met the expectations. It has taken up a stronger position than ever before as the world’s most important trade fair for mobility, transport and logistics, and improved its lead. With nearly 300,000 visitors (up by 12 per cent) from 110 countries, this IAA has exceeded all figures from previous IAA Commercial Vehicles and set a new record. Companies from 48 countries presented their innovations, including 258 world premieres. Of the 2,084 exhibitors (up by 34 per cent) a total of 1,188 came from abroad, which is 52 per cent more than two years ago. The exhibition space covered an area of 275,000 sq m (up by 10 per cent). This IAA has shown that the commercial vehicle industry leads in environmental technology. Here at the IAA it was recognizable for the first time on a broad front that commercial vehicles are opening up to the alternative powertrains. The focus was on the efforts made in traffic sustainability and thus climate protection also.
2009
In the crisis year of 2009 the IAA Cars proved to be a magnet for visitors. Around 850,000 people visited the IAA, which greatly exceeded the target of 750,000. This IAA, which took place under the headline “A Moving Experience“, showed where the mobility of tomorrow is heading. A huge number of options were presented at the IAA, ranging from the mild hybrid and the plug-in hybrid to the all-electric car, fuel cells and hydrogen power.
2010
The 63rd IAA Commercial Vehicles has exceeded expectations. With 1,751 exhibitors from 43 countries, this was the IAA with the second highest number of exhibitors ever. And with the new record of 272 world premieres, this IAA has enhanced its position as the world’s most important trade fair for mobility, logistics and transport. It marks a turning point – the commercial vehicle markets around the world are expanding. The IAA took place at the right time – with tangible support from the recovering economy. The IAA has shown that commercial vehicles are setting technological trends. They lead in environmental technology. Vans and buses are clearly moving towards alternative powertrains: hybrid drive, electric power, and fuel cells. In heavy trucks the trend is the further optimisation of clean diesel engines that are becoming even cleaner and more economical. A large number of innovations from the suppliers and the makers of trailers and bodies together produce a further rise in the efficiency of commercial vehicles. The target of “far in excess of 200,000 visitors to the IAA” has been met. With 240,000 to 250,000 visitors, this IAA has reached the average level for the IAA Commercial Vehicles in this decade. Against the backdrop of the last two years, that is a very respectable result.
2011
Under the headline “Future Comes as Standard”, this IAA Cars at Frankfurt has sent out strong signals in the form of more exhibitors (1,012), more exhibition space (235,000 square meters), more world premieres (183) and more visitors (928,100) than the IAA two years ago. Innovations focused on highly fuel-efficient passenger vehicles while also meeting increased customer demands in fields such as safety, comfort, quality, and design. Over 12,000 journalists from 98 countries reported from this IAA. As a highlight, the 64th IAA Cars featured the all-new “Hall of Electric Mobility”, a first-timer to all Motor Shows worldwide. Additional IAA-premieres included the Electric Mobility Congress as well as the CarIT Congress dealing with the issue of connected driving.
2012
The IAA show has never been more international: IAA hosted exhibitors from 46 countries. With 1,904 exhibitors and 262,300 visitors, the trade fair presenting the slogan “Commercial vehicles – Driving the Future” dramatically exceeded expectations. The exhibitors took advantage of this showcase to introduce their contributions to the most important trends, such as Euro VI, aerodynamics, alternative drive systems, intelligent and predictive gear shifting, safety, lightweight construction, networking/telematics and extra-long trucks. With in total 354 world premieres – more than two thirds of suppliers introduced world premieres – the IAA 2012 was setting a new record for novel products. 2,087 journalists from 56 countries reported on the latest models and innovations. Test drives in electrical vehicles were offered on the trade show grounds for the first time.
2013
With 1,098 exhibitors from 35 countries, it is "The most automobile show in the world" - this is the slogan of the 65th IAA Cars. 42 percent of the exhibitors come from abroad. More than 11,945 accredited journalists from 99 countries report about 159 presented world premieres. Approximately 900,000 visitors obtained information about trends like electric mobility and the connected vehicle. At the IAA, everybody can see that electric mobility is not a vision anymore. Electrical vehicles enter the street - in every segment, from compact cars to sports cars.
2014
As the largest mobility trade fair, the 65th IAA Commercial Vehicles is even more international – 2,066 exhibitors from 45 countries exhibit 322 world premieres. The slogan is “Driving the future” and connectivity and efficiency as the main topics drive innovation. 1,944 journalists from 58 countries report about the world’s most important trade fair for mobility, transport and logistics. On an area of about 265,000 square meters, 250,000 visitors learn about the whole commercial vehicles value-added chain. China heads the list of the ten best represented foreign countries.
2015
The 66th IAA Cars is the world’s most important mobility show. With 1,103 exhibitors from 39 countries, a floor space of 230,000 square meters and over 930,000 visitors, it is further consolidating its position as leading trade fair. The number of world premieres has risen by one third. The IAA 2015 slogan is “Mobility connects”. It stands for the thematic focus on connected car and automated driving that shapes this IAA. The IAA also featured the “New Mobility World”, giving the digital world of mobility its own exhibition area for the first time. More than 11,000 journalists from 106 countries report on IAA Cars.
2016
The slogan of the 66th IAA Commercial Vehicles 2016 was “driven by ideas.” This was delivered on in spades at this year’s version of the world’s most important trade fair for transport, logistics and mobility. The IAA 2016 was the trade fair for decision makers, and more international than ever. Three major themes dominated this IAA: electric mobility, digitization and urban logistics. These topics were addressed at numerous congresses, on the LIVE stage in the outdoor exhibition area, during the “guided tours” and in the course of many an electric vehicle test drive in the IAA grounds, all under the New Mobility World logistics banner. The IAA visitors were able to immerse themselves in this new mobility and logistics world and experience it firsthand. That too is what explains the fascination of this IAA.

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