Frankfurt International Motor Show

By Brendan Moore

09.11.2007

2008 BMW 128i Coupe

For those of you that are only casual followers of cars and the auto industry, the 2007 Frankfurt International Motor Show opened for press previews in Frankfurt, Germany.

The 62nd Internationalen Automobil-Ausstellungen Cars, which happens once every two years, is being held at CongressCenter Messe Frankfurt convention center from Sept.13 through Sept. 23. The show covers approximately 2.5 million square feet and will see the debuts of 88 new models by various auto manufacturers worldwide. Huge? Gargantuan? Really big? You bet – it is like drinking from a fire hose in terms of trying to take it all in, and its going to be an exciting next few days. Previews for the press began Monday night GMT, so we’re already getting information about some of the cars shown..

For those of that are ardent followers of the industry, I’m certain you are keenly aware of the Frankfurt show, and little of this is news to you, but maybe the next paragraph is.

The Frankfurt is usually a technological showcase for the fastest and most powerful concept and production cars the German car companies can come up with; the foreign manufacturers follow suit by trying to one-up the Germans. This year, however, the industry is hedging it bets and trotting out everything they can with an “eco” or “hybrid” label on it in addition to the usual go-fast stuff. The amount of emphasis on environmental concerns as it relates to cars is nothing short of astounding, considering the history of the show.

There will be coverage galore of the Frankfurt show online and, later, in the industry and enthusiast magazines, so we’re not going to try to match that coverage for depth and width; and frankly, we couldn’t even if we wanted to. But we’re following the show closely, and we’ll try to bring you some articles real-time that look at things from a different angle or cover a car that perhaps got a little less coverage than it should have.

Just off the top of my head, here are some (not even close to all) of the cars at the show that I am very interested in tracking:

BMW 1-Series – I’ve criticized BMW for allowing all their cars to become big GT cars as opposed to sports coupes or sports sedans. And please, let’s not even talk about the SUVs. This small powerful coupe may be the answer to a BMW fan’s prayers.


Opel Flextreme Concept – GM’s Opel divison is showing a very cool concept (shown above) built off of the GM E-Flex platform (Same as the Chevrolet Volt concept), and since Saturn now gets pretty much what Opel gets, maybe we’ll see it here.

VW City Expert Concept – We did a piece on this early last month, and now the concept is here. This car could be a very big deal for VW in the next decade. I can’t wait to see it.

Ford Verve Concept – We did a piece on this car as well last month. If the production car (expected to be the next Fiesta) retains the same lines as the concept, this will be a knockout.

We hope you enjoy our Frankfurt coverage – check back for updates to the site as the show progresses.

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Author: Brendan Moore

Brendan Moore is a Principal Consultant with Cedar Point Consulting , a management consulting practice based in the Washington, DC area. He also manages Autosavant Consulting, a separate practice within Cedar Point Consulting. where he advises businesses connected to the auto industry. Cedar Point Consulting can be found at http://www.cedarpointconsulting.com.

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4 Comments

  1. I share the sentiment about BMW. I am planning on test driving and then (if everything is as expected) buying a BMW 128i as soon as I can. I have been witing for it to be available in the U.S. since it came out.

  2. FRANKFURT IS A BLAST SO MANY WONDERFUL CARS TO LOOK AT AND DROOL OVER

  3. On my side, about the sentiment about BMW, it’s another angle, going after ultra-popularity instead of exclusivity. Maybe I’m too pessimist, but selling BMW to the dozens, made them common perhaps even….too common.

    The 1-series will work in a short-term but in a more long-term, will the upcoming 1-series will “cheapen” the image of BMW like what the Packard 120 and Clipper did to Packard?
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Packard_120
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Packard_Clipper

    Auto historian Richard M. Langworth written a very good article about the Packard 120 in the December 2005 issue of the magazine Collectible Automobile. He stated then the 120 was a good idea for Packard to handle during the last years of the Great Depression while others like Duesenberg, Pierce-Arrow, Cord didn’t make it, however after WWII, Packard continued to made the 120 and his successor the Clipper to a lower-price braket going after Oldsmobile and DeSoto customers instead of Cadillac. Former Packard president Jance Nance saw this and tried to made the Clipper a separate brand but it was too little too late.

    Could history repeat for BMW? The context had changed a whole lot since but who knows?

  4. The Ford VERVE owns the show. It rocks. Incredible amount of style and for such a small amount of money if it’s the new Fiesta.

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