Brussels Motor Show remains biggest indoor event in Belgium

Brussels Motor Show remains biggest indoor event in Belgium
An electric car at the 100th edition of the Brussels Motor Show. Credit: Belga/ Eric Lalmand

The 100th edition of the Brussels Motor Show ended on Sunday. After a two-year hiatus, it announced it has made a powerful comeback, as the event already attracted more than 265,000 visitors.

Organised by Febiac (the Belgian Federation of Cars and Two-wheeled vehicles) from 14 to 22 January, the preliminary visitor figures for the special edition at the Brussels Expo were slightly below the 300,000 people that organisers had hoped for. Although, the organisation also stated that even with these numbers, it is "still undoubtedly the most popular indoor event in Belgium."

"The unanimously positive feedback we received from the Belgian and international media from day one, and the massive turnout of visitors allows us to conclude today that our challenge, which was to put the Brussels Motor Show back on the map as a leading European fair for our industry, has succeeded," Director Gabriel Goffoy stated.

Over nine days, some 30,000 visitors per day discovered all the industry's new products and technologies, while the election of the European Car of the Year was also organised for the first time ever.

Evolution of sector

For the event's comeback, Goffoy noted organisers opted for a "pragmatic approach" focusing on its "core business," namely the automobile. A recent survey showed cars are losing ground in Belgium, especially as a means of commuting to and from work, a trend not unnoticed by organisers.

"The automotive sector has evolved enormously since the last Motor Show in January 2020. It was important for us and for our exhibitors to be able to show visitors the evolution the sector has gone through over the past 3 years, especially in the field of electrification," Goffoy noted.

King Philippe and Prime Minister Alexander De Croo officially opened the 100th edition of the event. Credit: Belga/ Eric Lalmand

The salon was also visited by numerous politicians, including King Philippe, the Vice-President of the European Commission Frans Timmermans, Belgian Prime Minister Alexander De Croo and Federal Mobility Minister Georges Gilkinet, among others.

Ahead of the show's opening, the environmental group Extinction Rebellion alongside other activist groups hijacked nine large billboards and 70 bus shelter posters in Brussels to protest against what they said was misleading advertising of BMW and Toyota and their "aggressive lobbying against climate policy."

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Febiac already announced the 101st edition of the Brussels Motor Show, which will take place from 12 to 21 January 2024.

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