E-Mobility Transformation of Eurobike
FRIEDRICHSHAFEN, Germany – While the bicycle market is in a positive mood thanks to growing demand for e-bikes in Europe and Germany in particular, the biggest bicycle show on earth did not manage to keep up the number of visitors. The reason for the decline in the number of Eurobike visitors from 42,590 om 2017 to 37,379 this year is two-fold: the new registration policy for IBDs in order to improve visitors’ quality as well as the changed show dates.
“The newly introduced concept for all visitors including IBDs to register met by approval in the industry,” said Eurobike show manager Stefan Reisinger. “Although the introduction of ‘Retail First’, with a strict admission policy, led to a slight drop in the number of visitors, it also meant that the quality of visitors improved. This confirmed the success of the Retail First policy and as such it will continue in the future.” However, the ‘Retail First’ policy is not what dominated discussions at the show as this was on dates.
Not ready in time
In fact the disruption in the bicycle industry show calendar caused by Eurobike’s decision to move its dates resulted in much uncertainty and doubt. The show organizers pressed the exhibitors to present new models and products as much as possible but not everybody could meet that request. Several, for example, Messingschlager, chose to present only a limited part of their new program. Often because the rest was not ready yet or even prototypes were not available. Many exhibitors also told Bike Europe not to have their price lists ready. Probably it will be a matter of time for the industry to adapt to the new show dates, but for this year the window of ten months between the 2017 and 2018 edition was too short. It is also an indication that a ‘flexible’ schedule for Eurobike, which could means a regular switch to a new date, as show manager Stefan Reisinger suggested last week, is not beneficial for this industry. It would bring too much uncertainty.
Bicycles or e-mobility?
The Eurobike transformation to urban mobility and e-mobility in particular was apparent most of all in the Rothaus Hall, Hall A1. Here Messe Friedrichshafen introduced the motto ‘E-Mobility Solutions’. From drive systems and battery technologies to new solutions in connectivity and digitalization, and on to cargo bikes. They gathered all presentations of modern mobility in one hall and with that gave an inside into the future of Eurobike.
In the past years Eurobike was already one of the best locations for companies to present their e-bike market enty and this was also the case at the 27th edition of the event. One of them was ZF, headquartered in Friedrichshafen, ZF was positive about their first Eurobike: “We have received a lot of positive feedback from OE customers and dealers on our product line,” said a company spokesman. “The topic of system integration was particularly interesting for partners who develop vehicles beyond the bicycle for professional use. Many people were happy seeing the brand Sachs the return to the bicycle industry.”