'The Pop-Up Motor Show is a simple idea at precisely the right time'

Mike Rutherford thinks the new Pop-Up Motor Show can be the perfect way to serve the demands of Britain's car users

There has long been, and always will be, a place for cold, virtual, atmosphere-free, car-related events that folk can remotely (and partially) see and hear – but not touch, smell or feel. Long may they continue. For certain people at certain times in their busy or locked-down lives, virtually ‘attending’ via a screen on a laptop or mobile phone makes sense. 

But don’t, whatever you do, accept the lazy lie that proper car shows attended by makers, dealers and the public are dead, buried and never coming back. Only last week in China, the world’s largest vehicle-producing country by a long way, the Beijing Motor Show was alive and kicking with its own busy press, trade, auto-parts, and public days. 

But that’s just for starters. Closer to home and on a somewhat smaller scale, the British Motor Show has been rescheduled for the Farnborough International Exhibition Centre in August next year. And across the globe there are countless other major and minor car exhibitions confirmed for 2021 (subject to the lifting or modification of pandemic restrictions, of course). 

But before then, a new and unique type of small, live, intimate automotive event has been invented, registered, trademarked and readied for launch in England this month, for the benefit of consumers and companies in the UK and overseas. It’s a simple, logical and accessible series of physical gatherings for casual or committed consumers of cars, plus car-related products and services. The first one opens its doors this month, and the name that it and subsequent events planned for other venues will go by? The Pop-Up Motor Show.   

With so many vacant commercial properties in large shopping malls, on high streets and at edge-of-town retail parks, it’s a brilliantly simple idea at precisely the right time. Look out for these motoring-themed pop-ups arriving in cities, towns or villages near you soon – with zero entry fees for members of the public, you’ll be delighted to learn.          

The first will be staged on 6,000 sq ft of the Basingstoke Festival Place shopping, dining and leisure centre, from 16 Oct to 24 December. What will be at this initial Pop-Up Motor Show in Hampshire? Everything from all-new, rarely seen cars proudly displayed to many for the first time, to touchscreen computers that will let consumers view and order their vehicles of choice. Q&A sessions, book signings, competitions, motorsport stuff, the occasional celeb appearances and all sorts of car-related education, entertainment and info will be available, too – all washed down with obligatory tea, coffee, or soft drinks. 

The usual social-distancing and other rules have to, and will, apply. And if demand becomes too high, would be-attendees might need to book their slots in advance. Think of these pop-ups as crèches for motoring mums and dads, plus their kids who travel on the back seats of their family cars, and are the motorists of tomorrow. Collectively these car users are approximately 55 million strong and, currently, they are not being served by the traditional car-exhibition industry in Britain. The new, unique, multi-brand Pop-Up Motor Show might just be a great and cost-effective way to serve them better. 

Are you planning on attending a pop-up motor show? Let us know in the comments below...

Recommended

'We need to get our infrastructure ready for an electric-car revolution'
Opinion Charging infrastructure
Opinion

'We need to get our infrastructure ready for an electric-car revolution'

John McIlroy says upgrading the UK's electric car charging network will be key to keeping the country moving come 2030
4 Aug 2021
'Formula E could be on course for victory in its battle with F1'
Formula E opinion
Opinion

'Formula E could be on course for victory in its battle with F1'

Mike Rutherford thinks there can only be one winner out of Formula One and Formula E
1 Aug 2021
'Driver Power is a hugely important guide for new car buyers'
Driver Power
Opinion

'Driver Power is a hugely important guide for new car buyers'

Hugo Griffiths thanks everyone involved in making the Driver Power 2021 survey a valuable tool for new car buyers
29 Jul 2021
"The unthinkable is happening: used cars are going up in value"
Honda e
Opinion

"The unthinkable is happening: used cars are going up in value"

With the semi-conductor crisis driving up the value of used cars, editor-in-chief Steve Fowler thinks it's a good time to part exchange
21 Jul 2021

Most Popular

New Dacia Duster facelift priced from £13,995
Dacia Duster facelift - front
Dacia Duster

New Dacia Duster facelift priced from £13,995

The Dacia Duster has been updated for 2021 with subtle design tweaks and a new eight-inch infotainment screen
2 Aug 2021
'Formula E could be on course for victory in its battle with F1'
Formula E opinion
Opinion

'Formula E could be on course for victory in its battle with F1'

Mike Rutherford thinks there can only be one winner out of Formula One and Formula E
1 Aug 2021
New Renault Kangoo 2021 review
Renault Kangoo Van - front
Renault Kangoo Van

New Renault Kangoo 2021 review

We get an early drive of the new Renault Kangoo van
3 Aug 2021