The automobile sector denounces the shortage of vehicles for sale on the Island. A lack of stock directly related to the lack of parts, basically microchips, at the manufacturing points. The absence of semiconductors hampers the normal functioning of the world market and the Russian invasion of Ukraine further complicates the situation. This is equivalent to great difficulties for its importation. The reality is that the buyer of a car on the islands takes more than six months to receive it, especially if he wants a certain color. The eighth edition of the Canary Islands Motor Show appears as a key forum to put an end to uncertainty and try to relaunch an industry that generates economy and employment due to its many ancillary services, at a particularly difficult time. Most of the models offered are electric or hybrid because the future is already here.
All the roads lead for three days, until Sunday, to the thousands of motor fans of the Island to the Santa Cruz Fairgrounds. For the first time, the car and motorcycle fair coincides with the Rally Isla de Tenerife, which in its 48th edition has the commercial surname of Orvecame
Orvecame, precisely, does not miss the appointment three years later – it was held in 2019 with 20,000 visitors, it was due in 2021, but it could not be due to the pandemic. They are also faithful, among other firms, Icamotor, Arimotor, or the emblematic Rahn. Thus up to 40 brands that exhibit their new models in 70 commercial stands that include products and services related to the sector in 16,000 square meters of installation.
The space reserved for the simulation of the track of the future Tenerife Motor Circuit stands out. Two virtual vehicles delight fans of speed and those who are not so fast in moving around the 16 curves of the track, eleven to the left and five to the right, of the enclosure designed in the Atogo area, at south of the island.
The president of the Cabildo de Tenerife, Pedro Martín, highlights the importance of the automotive sector for the economy of the Canary Islands and «the constant commitment it makes to innovation and the search for alternatives based on greater respect for the environment and a reduction in waste and consumption.
With these words, Martín inaugurates the Motor Show, in an act in which other local and regional authorities also participate, as well as the president of the Canary Islands Regional Federation of Importers and Car Dealers (Fredica), Jesús Orozco; and the director of Corporate Strategy and Diversification of the Disa Group, sponsor, Florencio de la Rosa.
The island president assures that “this show, at a time of uncertainty for a strategic sector, affected by the pandemic and the shortage of manufacturing materials, is a sign of its resistance in the Canary Islands.” He trusts that “it will serve as an incentive to continue advancing in a necessary renovation of the mobile fleet of the Island”.
“Many brands present new vehicles -explains the president- that have respect for the environment in common, not only because they are increasingly more alternative but because they have tried to reduce resources in the manufacturing process”. He values the need to combine public transport with the use of a less polluting private transport.
Enrique Arriaga, vice president of the Cabildo, highlights that “after two years of the pandemic, this show brings together practically all the brands in the Canary Islands.” He underlines that “it responds to today’s needs regarding the different types of fuel” and adds that “practically all of them present novelties in terms of gasoline or diesel, hybrid or electric.” He considers that this “is an interesting year” because it seems that the sector “may begin to resume the boom prior to the health crisis. There are many expectations and desire to recover that lost splendor.
Regarding the stand of the Motor Circuit, one of its main promoters recalls that the model has been installed at the entrance and it will be possible to run with two simulators around the track through the Assetto Corsa racing video game application. Anyone can go around the track and enter a competition. The best times will go to the final on Sunday at 4:00 p.m. There will be prizes from circuit merchandising. “We encourage them to come and enjoy” says Arriaga.
The general director of Commerce and Consumption of the Government of the Canary Islands, David Mille, emphasizes the need for “all administrations to unite in defense of the sector and to value its auxiliary industry.”
The president of Fredica, Jesús Orozco, highlights an event “indicating that little by little it returns to normality.” He hopes it will help boost sales.
Florencio de la Rosa, representative of Grupo Disa, highlights the importance of renewing the fleet –including green hydrogen– as the only alternative to deepen savings and improve energy efficiency in the automotive sector. “Encouraging renewal, not only for electric vehicles but for any existing technology, is betting on faster decarbonization,” he emphasizes.
After the speeches comes the tour of the authorities, the media and the curious –people are encouraged little by little to enter throughout the morning– through the different exhibitors. Particularly noteworthy are those of historic dealerships such as Rhan and Arimotor where they unveiled –with the unveiling ceremony of the canvas that covered them included– the new Mercedes GLC and Nissan X-Trail models, respectively, at an approximate cost of 60,000 euros. The latter is one of the stars, according to connoisseurs, and represents the fourth generation of a multi-purpose 4×4 vehicle for the city (SUV for its acronym in English). One hundred percent electric without the need for cables or plugs to recharge its batteries thanks to its E-Power technology. At the stand opposite, their cousins are presented, the Chinese Aiways U5, electric from 45,000 euros.
Jonay and Fátima are the sales representatives at the Peugeot stand and its Cabrera Medina dealership. They bring six cars and three motorcycles to the fair. Among them the Rifter, “the best-selling car in the Canary Islands” in its segment. The faces of the brand highlight its versatility as it is suitable for daily use, family enjoyment, work or a weekend getaway. “A tourism inside a van” summary. Both coincide in the complicated moment of the sector “due to the lack of microchips” and admit to having little stock to offer the product in response to customer demand. They consider that “the electric car is no longer the future but the present”. In fact, the client “is already beginning to request it on a regular basis to the detriment of the combustion vehicle.”
Domingo González, treasurer of the Association of Motor Journalists of the Canary Islands (Apemoc), highlights that “recovering normality after the stoppage forced by the pandemic is a good sign.” Both “for one of the most important sectors in terms of job creation and wealth” and for the general public because in the same space “you can find a lot of very interesting options for both two- and four-wheel vehicles and for private or professional use.
The journalist from Tenerife values that “the automotive industry is undergoing profound changes and it shows.” He adds: “Virtually every brand has electric or hybrid models with some national first.” He considers it symptomatic that Disa «already talks about the arrival of green hydrogen» or the presence of Chinese brands». He summarizes: “They are examples of the dynamism of an innovative industry.”
Álvaro Díaz, another specialized journalist, understands that “it is worthwhile to organize this show at a very difficult time for the sector due to the lack of parts and, therefore, of vehicles.” He values ”the good response and the effort to bet on the most advanced technologies.” He considers it important that it coincides for the first time with the rally. Hence, there is no specific racing section for that sector because the Parc Fermé is already next to the enclosure.
José is one of the first visitors to enter after the opening of the doors of the Fairgrounds – admission is 3 euros, with adults and children free, from 10:30 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. He comes because he bought a car five months ago and wants to see what’s new ». The living room seems “an excellent idea.” Curiosity attracts Luis and María from Arona, a couple who are thinking of buying a vehicle but “not yet electric” because they see it as “very expensive”.
Andrés, finally, comes from the north of the island and gets excited like a child before the Tenerife Circuit simulator. Between curve and curve he confesses that he is very fond of speed and the room “is very good”. A regular profile for the next three days at the Tenerife Fairgrounds.