Automechanika Birmingham 2019: what’s in store?

In turbulent and challenging times for the automotive market, Automechanika Birmingham gathers the industry in June to shine a light on Brexit uncertainties, electrification and innovation…

“No deal would doom us to decline.” The words of Mike Hawes, Chief Executive of the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT), provide a rather stark reality of the current challenges faced by the UK automotive industry regarding our departure from the EU.

According to Hawes, the inability of the UK parliament to find a compromise has run, “the very real risk that the UK has become un-investable,” with some sort of agreement between politicians urgently needed to deliver frictionless trade with Europe.

The truth is, no one really knows in which court the Brexit ball will eventually land, and it’s this uncertainty which is ruffling more than a few feathers in the European car market.

Gathering the industry

Automechanika Birmingham, however, refuses to be quelled by Brexit doom and gloom and is returning to the NEC this year between 4-6 June, for its fourth instalment. The leading exhibition for the automotive aftermarket and vehicle production sector is facing Brexit’s challenges head on, with the inclusion of a Brexit Readiness Programme in cooperation with SMMT. Expert advisors have been assembled for the programme to provide guidance and assistance to members both pre and post Brexit, and they will be on hand answer questions and offer advice during the show.

The programme will cover a wide variety of Brexit-related topics, including customs, tax, trade, employment, finance,intellectual property, regulatory changes, contracts, environment, new technology and state aid. The experts, namely Grant Thornton, Gowling WLG, PwC and Squire Patton Boggs, will be present on the SMMT stand and provide a series of seminar sessions for the Vehicle Production Seminar Programme.

Industry Forum sessions

Automechanika Birmingham is also readying its Industry Forum sessions which will give attendees a general understanding of the fundamentals of supply chain management, as well as an introduction to operational excellence in manufacturing.

The seminar schedule also includes sessions on women in automotive innovation, tomorrow’s mobility and electrification.

Future Mobility & Innovation

New for 2019, and in-keeping with this year’s leading theme of ‘innovation’, is the Future Mobility and Innovation Showcase, presenting the UK’s capabilities with the latest technologies in connected and autonomous vehicles, electrification, ultra-low emissions and battery technology.

The showcase, put on by Automechanika Birmingham in association with the Department for International Trade and key industry partners, will provide the opportunity to meet directly with those responsible for fostering innovation in the UK automotive sector.

Building on success

Last year’s show welcomed 10,200 automotive industry personnel with products, networking and over 70 hours of seminars, while Meet the Buyer and Open Forum events, hosted by SMMT, brought together automotive buyers and suppliers to build relationships between OEMs, tier one suppliers and the supply chain.

Jack Halliday, Automechanika Event Director, believes this year’s show is a must-visit in the current automotive climate: “We’ve seen an increase in anticipation from visitors and exhibitors for this year’s event and the excitement is building. Automechanika Birmingham is a must visit for anybody working in the automotive industry and this year’s event is going to be the most engaging yet, cementing Automechanika Birmingham’s position as the meeting place for the UK’s automotive industry.”

Handling the heat

Automechanika exhibitor, NORMA Group, has received an order from a leading Chinese car manufacturer to develop and supply thermal management systems for its electric vehicles. The complete systems will ensure thermal management of the electric motor, power electronics, charging technology and the driver’s cabinet. NORMA’s systems combine thermoplastic multilayer pipes, PS3 connectors, integrated temperature sensors, RSGU pipe retaining clips and valves.

According to NORMA Group CEO, Bernd Kleinhens, this development is part of the firm’s “corporate strategy to support our customers as a competence leader and development partner in new markets.”

To find out more, head to booth P140 in the aftermarket sector at the show.