A truck exhibition? Yes… but. Although goods transportation is of course expected to be the key topic in Hannover, with plenty of exciting novelties ready to be unveiled (you may find everything on the subject in Sustainable Truck&Van section dedicated to IAA 2022), public transport and bus business will not be sitting back. And, what is worth mentioning, new concept and new business will be represented under the venue’s spotlight. Needless to say, IAA TRANSPORTATION 2022 is awaited as one of the main public transport exhibitions scheduled for 2022 in Europe.
We discussed with Jan Heckmann, Head of IAA Transportation, novelties and focus of this year exhibition.
Visitors can still experience new buses at the IAA TRANSPORTATION. MAN, for example, is taking part in the IAA TRANSPORTATION visitor shuttle with a modern articulated electric bus. Visitors can also look forward to an autonomous e-bus from Karsan and e-buses from TEMSA, Otokar or Webasto. BYD and Ikarus will also be showing in the outdoor area how the bus industry has developed in recent years. Daimler will integrate buses into its events on press day. We hope that the IAA TRANSPORTATION will continue to build on this. We want to send a clear signal to the bus industry: we are your platform and want you in Hannover. For 2024, we are already having positive initial talks and will also use the IAA for this.Jan Heckmann, Head of IAA Transportation
Jan Heckmann: what is new at IAA TRANSPORTATION
From IAA Commercial Vehicles to IAA Transportation. New name, new focus. Is it a sign that, after the pandemic and in the middle of such a significant energy transition the transportation sector needs new ideas and formats?
«We believe that the great challenges of the commercial vehicle industry can only be tackled and solved together with the transport sector and the logistics industry. With the new IAA TRANSPORTATION concept, we have opened up the field for new exhibitors who are essential for the climate-neutral and networked future of the industry. Exhibitors such as Amazon Relay, Siemens Energy, Linde, Air Products or Quantron and others show how diverse the market is in motion and we want to support this as the leading platform»
Why have you decided to pick a dedicated topic on each exhibition day?
«At this year’s IAA Conference, we have defined four main topics and we looked for strong partners for this. With the DSLV, HDE, BDEW and VDV, we want to discuss in exciting conference formats what potential the individual sectors have, but also where there is still a need for action. The perspectives of our partners are very enriching for the IAA TRANSPORTATION and of course for our visitors. The four theme days are: Trade, Logistics, Infrastructure and Municipal Transport. We also have exciting speakers from various industries. This shows our guiding principle of a platform that brings together all relevant players».
Many events, from 2020 on, have been switched to ‘digital mode’. Are you going to implement any online activities beside the physical heart of the exhibition?
«With the IAA Virtual, we offer that certain formats, such as the conference live stream, are also available online – after the IAA also on demand. Nevertheless, as organizers, we believe in interesting live events on site with personal exchange and our exhibitors also encourage us in this. We experienced this at our international press workshop in Frankfurt at the end of June. The participants and the journalists want to come together physically. And that also applies to the IAA. We want to create experiences for the visitors with the IAA TRANSPORTATION. Experiences that bring you closer to the innovative power of our exhibitors. Let me give more examples. We offer formats such as our test drives as part of the IAA Experience. The format sold out very quickly. Visitors want to experience how the innovations work. This is only possible on site. Our Plug and Play Campus is also a live experience that you can enjoy on site. What will the modern charging infrastructure of tomorrow look like? Visitors to Hanover can experience all of this up close».
Energy transition is bringing not only to a change in vehicles’ equipment but also to the entrance of new players in the truck and bus market. Let’s mention utility and infrastructures providers, just to make an example. How are these new players going to be involved in IAA Transportation 2022 concept?
«We are currently 97% booked and let me say this with all candor, we aimed precisely at these new target groups with the concept expansion. And that worked out. We look forward to exhibitors like ABB or Siemens Energy who have ideas about what the infrastructure should look like in the future».
From the bus sector to Hannover
Talking about buses, we know Daimler and MAN will not have buses on their booths. However, we’ve heard that their bus divisions will be involved “in a different way”. Can you say more about it?
«The IAA TRANSPORTATION wants to create experiences as an event. Visitors can still experience new buses at the IAA TRANSPORTATION. MAN, for example, is taking part in the IAA TRANSPORTATION visitor shuttle with a modern articulated electric bus. Visitors can also look forward to an autonomous e-bus from Karsan and e-buses from TEMSA, Otokar or Webasto. BYD and Ikarus will also be showing in the outdoor area how the bus industry has developed in recent years. Daimler will integrate buses into its events on press day. We hope that the IAA TRANSPORTATION will continue to build on this. We want to send a clear signal to the bus industry: we are your platform and want you in Hannover. For 2024, we are already having positive initial talks and will also use the IAA for this».
Buses often ‘pay the price’ of a bad public perception. Do you think that the transition of e-mobility and digital services will be able to modify this situation in the short-term future?
«That’s an exciting question. For us as organizers of the IAA TRANSPORTATION and IAA MOBILITY, it can be said that we see an enormous future in the bus sector and will continue to strategically expand the segment. We already have exhibitors like Karsan, Anadolu Isuzu, Temsa, Sinos Synergy, ABB as an infrastructure provider and many suppliers in our bus exhibition area such as Bosch, Knorr-Bremse, ZF. We hope for a better economic situation in 2024 and plan to place the bus issue much more strongly on the market».
IAA TRANSPORTATION, new players, a changing industry
Quantron, Enginius – just to quote a couple of names that emerged at the press workshop – will join the exhibition. Talking about trucks, what was the feedback coming from other newcomers (Volta Trucks, Tevva, Hyzon Motors and so on)?
«The feedback was very positive. For these newcomers, who have already positioned themselves well in the media, the IAA TRANSPORTATION is an ideal opportunity to present themselves and their products on site, to manifest announcements on site and to network with the industry, but also to enter the competition. The advantages of a global platform are clearly noticed by these brands and we are very pleased about that»
Based on the anticipations released so far, the IAA Transportation seems to be one of the very first events where we may see something real about hydrogen. Is it so, in your opinion? And what does it mean?
«Hydrogen is one of the topics that I am personally very excited about. We will demonstrate on our Plug and Play Campus how a hydrogen filling station works in action. We also have exciting exhibitors such as Enginius or Keyou, Hyzon, OG Cleanfuels, TEVVA, Linde, Air Products, Cellcentric, Hexagon Puros, the German Hydrogen Association or XCMG, who will show products that are already marketable today. In Hall 24 we have brought many exhibitors together in a hydrogen area, and we will also see this topic in many other places this year. The IAA TRANSPORTATION will give climate-friendly drives a boost. Be curious what you will experience in Hannover».
Are LCV manufacturers highly involved in the exhibition, as it happened in the past?
«Yes, indeed – Ford, Renault or VW Commercial Vehicles, MAN, SAIC, Iveco, XBUS, as well as some new players will have the latest solutions and some popular products with them. Many of them can be experienced and driven live on site, including Mercedes-Benz vans. Due to the increasing volume of transport and CEP, this part of urban transport continues to be very important. But also think of the craftsmen who have to deal with the issues of zero-emission driveways in the cities».