“Celebrating a car when other European salons close is a Guinness World Record.”

With a strong commitment to electrification, Enrique Lacalle, president of the show, which will celebrate its 42nd edition from May 13 to 21, stresses, “The Barcelona Automobile Show is an international benchmark and never throws in the towel in its support of the sector.”

– the slogan “electrification” reveals, but will there be combustion vehicles?

– With this slogan everything is said, but there will be everything, like in a pharmacy, although we go the way the world should go and the way the auto industry goes.

Will the sale of electric cars be reinvigorated with so much uncertainty and a lack of charging points?

— Enrollments increased 51% and we reached 28,831 units as per Q1 numbers. It’s a good fact. When you see that the European Union wants to ban diesel manufacturing by 2035 and then Germany blocks the decision, it raises doubts, but the path is clear, although it must be said that combustion engines are unusual and emit as little as possible.

What is your advice to the hesitant?

Many friends ask me. An electric car is better in the city because there are more recharging options. For those who live farther away, the solution is plug-in hybrids. When in doubt, it’s best to come to the show, because there are also rental and rental companies. In Spain, 10% of recordings are electric, while in Norway it is 80%. There are recharge points everywhere and government subsidies to make it cheaper.

Is it enough to support departments?

– The hall calls on the government to facilitate the renewal of the car park, because the average in Spain is now 14 years old. Generous aid is needed for all audiences or we will continue to be one of the countries with the oldest garden in Europe. After the failure of the first Perte, because the conditions were very expensive and there was minimal coverage, they are now saying that the second Perte VEC will be given 2100 million, so there is money, but the conditions must be realistic. Let’s hope it’s not just another campaign ad.

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– How many brands will be shown and what scoops will be offered?

There will be 31 brands with 14 new products, three of which are world class: Cupra Tavascán, Mercedes Benz E-Class and Ebro Ecopower. In the European Union there are almost no international shows left, and therefore the exhibition in Barcelona holds a Guinness record, as others close while we continue to serve the sector. Geneva has closed, the largest in Germany with a half-curtain, like Munich, which organizes a small rendezvous. Paris is limited to French cars and is also small. Brussels has been revitalized, but it has turned into a very commercial hall, while Italy has not become an international reference point. We are the best salon in Southern Europe.

– With Mayor Colao’s anti-car crusade, does the saloon need enemies?

Personally, I think that many of the measures that the mayor applies to avoid pollution cause the opposite and cause more pollution. An example of this is Via Augusta, where many parked cars emit far more than lanes open to normal circulation.

Generous aid is needed or we will continue to be one of the countries with the oldest garden in Europe

Is Spain a country that only produces cheap cars?

Welcome to all the cheap products we make because it has led us to be the second European country after Germany and before France. Nothing happens if we don’t build a Ferrari. This is a room for all budgets and all audiences.

– About 60 Chinese brands who want to sell in the EU were seen at the Shanghai Expo…

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– The Chinese do what they have to do: they look for opportunity and their moment in the open market. Some of the cars they make are very nice and at a very good price. The market may have another alternative to buy, but I don’t know them because I haven’t driven them. In the hall there will be ten Chinese brands.

– What do you suppose Automobil coincides in Montjuïc with Motoh! Barcelona, ​​motorcycle show?

– Double offer stimulates the two markets. Barcelona is the European city with the highest number of motorbikes on the road. Having both appointments in Montjuïc, where we have a testing circuit, makes it easier to test the vehicles.

Do you see the potential for Barcelona to welcome the chip industry?

MPS Semiconductor will open a new headquarters in Barcelona while Cisco will also locate its first chip design center in the European Union. We also have the ex-Nissan lands awarded to Australian Goodman, 500,000 square meters, next to the port and town, a real golden mile to locate the component plant, but no decision has been made yet. We have achieved the Copa América de Villa thanks to civil society, we have the possibility of the Ryder Cup, another global event, but we can lose it like the Winter Olympics, which would be noteworthy. Also, the expansion of the airport is not desirable with an investment of 1100 million. It’s all very strange, isn’t it?

Are you missing consensus?

– Of course, I am a man of consensus and conventions, and that is why I crave full cooperation between departments in search of a common goal. And the automotive industry is one of the most important industries in Spain, providing the highest quality jobs. The show is being held at an important moment of the transition towards sustainability. Everyone must fight towards the electrified road.

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