more details about the program

After several editions were canceled due to Covid-19, the Geneva Motor Show finally returns in 2023, but in a completely different format. Moving to Doha, dates, programs… We tell you everything about the 2023 edition of GIMS Qatar.

Rumored to be announced in August 2021, the creation of a second Geneva show based in Qatar was made official a year later. A surprising decision for many, especially since the show has been canceled for three consecutive editions due to Covid-19 and financial difficulties. At the beginning of 2023, the organizers of the show define the framework of the future event and answer our questions.

Since its creation in 1905, the Geneva Motor Show has been one of the most respected in Europe for its human scale. Its central position in Europe also allows easy access for many visitors, preparers and builders. However, for three years, it was the stampede. Three days before the show’s opening, in March 2020, a first edition was canceled at the last moment due to Covid-19, resulting in severe financial losses. The 2021 edition was also abandoned, mainly due to the abandonment of many builders and financial problems related to the cancellation of the disaster in 2020. And while it was supposed to return in force in 2022, the event was finally found “postponed” to 2023 But not in its traditional model.

A partnership that has been discussed since the summer of 2020

The Swiss event organization has been working since July 2020 on a partnership to expand its fair outside of Europe. So, it was with the help of the Qatar tourist office that the GIMS (Geneva International Motor Show) worked to relaunch its activity. Located at the crossroads of many countries, Qatar claims that 80% of the world’s population has access to the country in less than 6 hours by plane. The country relies on its reputation as an excellent host and its exemplary security, as well as its new infrastructure (roads, metro network, housing, etc.). For example, one hundred hotels were built to host the 2022 FIFA World Cup in December.

Many infrastructures have been built for the football World Cup in December 2022, and can be used for the motor show.

Credits: Qatar Tourism.

The return of the Geneva Motor Show is in Doha, the capital of Qatar. The event will take place from October 5 to 14, 2023, with the first opening night on October 5 and a day dedicated to journalism on October 6. Around 1,000 accredited journalists are expected. For those unable to attend, GIMS will offer a wealth of content live or recorded and broadcast on its GIMS TV channel. The opening to the public will take place the following day, October 7.

One edition every two years

This show in Geneva in Qatar is held every two years, and the organization has already announced that the partnership has been signed for the next ten years, that is, 5 scheduled editions. Although the world of luxury and premium is deeply rooted in the country, the event is not only aimed at sports car manufacturers. Moreover, the most common brand in Qatar is Toyota. To convince, a first trip was organized in November with several brands to demonstrate the concept. And according to the organization, initial feedback has been positive. The official registration for the acquisition of the stand and the logistical organization (with the partner company Qatar Airways) will be launched on February 1, 2023.

In conjunction with the F1 Grand Prix

Sandro Mesquita, director of GIMS, has great ambitions for the first edition of the edition in Qatar. It has also chosen to focus all its efforts on the first Qatari show by canceling the Swiss edition in 2023. The organizer hopes to attract more than 200,000 visitors to Doha, and intends to offer packs including on- site visits and other combined experiences such as a 4×4 desert expedition (including the spectacular Sealine Desert between the sands and the sea) or access to the Qatar Formula 1 Grand Prix.

The Formula 1 Grand Prix will take place alongside the show at the Lusail circuit, 20 km from Doha.

Credits: GIMS Qatar.

In fact, the motor show takes place in conjunction with the F1 event organized at the Lusail circuit. It is located 20 kilometers north of Doha. The grand prix starts with practice from Friday October 6 to Saturday October 7, then continues with the sprint race on October 7. The grand prize will be held on Sunday, October 8 in the evening. The circuit, which is currently undergoing renovation to better accommodate teams and spectators, alternates, over 5.4 kilometers, slow and fast turns as well as medium and high speed straight lines. After the race, it will serve as a test base for manufacturers who display sports vehicles and wish to display them.

An exhibition space on a human scale and several events already planned

The Doha Exhibition & Convention Center (DECC), inaugurated in 2015, will serve as the main exhibition venue for automobiles. Located in the very center of Doha, 25 minutes from the airport by car or metro, it offers five very open halls for a total area of ​​29,000 square meters. A relatively concentrated surface, which therefore remains in the spirit of the original Geneva Motor Show. Under the 18 meter high ceiling, the organization says it has 18 private conference spaces and a “VIP suite”.

4×4 expeditions will also be offered to brands that wish to do so, particularly in the Sealine Desert, a rare place where the dunes meet the sea.

Credits: Qatar Tourism.

Other exhibition areas and highlights are also planned, such as the “Parade of Excellence” which will take place on the Corniche road in Doha. This 6-kilometer walk around Doha Bay and the Persian Gulf will be an opportunity to drive rare cars in a convoy to expose them to passers-by. In addition, the collaboration with the future Qatar Auto Museum (scheduled opening for 2025) will allow part of the collection to be displayed at the show, including legendary vintage cars.

The Geneva Motor Show will return to Switzerland in 2024

Knowing that the abandonment of the Swiss edition of the Geneva Motor Show hit people’s minds, Sandro Mesquita insisted that the Swiss event will return in 2024. He even gave us the exact dates: the appointment was made at Palexpo from February 26 to March 1 , 2024. Reassuring news because the Mondial de Paris failed in its new formula (less than 400,000 visitors in one week), and goes in the direction of returning physical events like trade fairs from Brussels, Tokyo or Los Angeles. It remains to be seen if the Car of the Year election will return to Switzerland, after a 2023 edition moved to January at the Brussels Motor Show.

Photos: GIMS Qatar, Qatar Tourism.

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