Funny old motor show is Barcelona. The setting is quite stunning; it’s right in the heart of the city’s historic centre and instead of the usual faceless NEC-style halls, Barcelona’s are dotted all over the place so you’re able to soak in the scenery and sunshine walking between them.
But as I write this at 1pm local time on the first press day of the show, I’m one of the few remaining journalists left here. Everyone’s already gone home.
Newsworthy events can be counted on one hand. The only new car is Hyundai’s handsome new i40 saloon and even Seat hasn’t got any new cars to show at its home event.
And you only have to go back a fortnight to realise why it’s so quiet here – Shanghai. China’s annual show is arguably now the world’s most important and major European manufacturers flocked to show new metal there.
Western Europe just can’t sustain so many shows anymore, likewise North America. At Autocar, like much of the industry, we were baffled to see New York’s show in the same week as Shanghai’s. One’s going to have to give, and you don’t need a rocket science degree to work out which one…