The Beijing auto show opened its doors
It is the first major in–person sales event since the coronavirus pandemic began
However, the Beijing auto show is on a lower scale as compared to previous years, when the event was packed shoulder-to-shoulder with spectators.
“There is no crisis that humankind cannot overcome. We will do everything possible in order so that we can overcome the coronavirus crisis together,” – said Akio Toyoda, Toyota President, who appeared by video, from Japan.
Among the participants : Ford, BMW, General Motors. Beijing is now the show case for electric SUVs, luxury coupes and futuristic concept cars. Some car makers are broadcasting events online to reach wider audiences. Most brands are relying on Chinese employees or foreign managers who work in the country full-time to operate their displays while keeping contact with spectators to a minimum.
Nonetheless, automakers faced intensive anti-virus controls including quarantines for visitors from abroad.
One of the stars of the Beijing Show is Mustang Mach E, which was revelead by Ford simultaneously in Europe. Mark Kaufman, Ford Global Director for Electric Vehicles, says in Beijing that “Mustang Mach E is more than a game changer in the EV market. It is an innovator in the Mustang family, paving the way for a new era of the electrification of Ford.”
China’s auto industry has largely recovered following the March lockdown. In August, auto sales in China rose 6% over a year earlier. Meanwhile, purchases in the United States were down 9.5% from pre-pandemic levels. Sales in Europe plunged 17.6%.