The 67th IAA Commercial Vehicle Show - Hannover

Andy Picton

18 Oct 2018, Editorial

67th IAA Commercial Vehicle Show

The 67th IAA Commercial Vehicle Show - Hannover

The 67th IAA Commercial Vehicle show, under the slogan “Driving tomorrow,” lived up to its aspiration of being the world’s most important trade fair for transport, logistics and mobility. The IAA show painted a clear message to visitors that the entire commercial vehicle sector is anticipating change. The show focused on market trends including electric mobility, digitisation and urban logistics within manufacturers of commercial vehicles and buses, in the trailer sector and at the multitude of suppliers.

Hailing from 48 countries, 2,174 exhibitors filled 282,000 square meters of exhibition space unveiling 435 new vehicles for the first time anywhere in the world. With the central show message concentrating on electric mobility being available today with e-vans, urban buses and medium-duty distribution trucks.

Many stands had e-cargo-bikes on display for the first time, providing a smart, environmentally friendly and affordable solution to the question of “last mile” distribution. Visitors to the show experienced the trend of digitisation from vehicle producers to telematics providers.

Glass’s Chief Commercial Vehicle Editor Andy Picton made his bi-annual pilgrimage to Hannover to understand what the commercial vehicle industry has in store over the next few years.

“What I saw did not disappoint,” said Andy, “with many companies using the show as a window to showcase concept vehicles, future technology and the future of electro-mobility. Indications across the show suggest that the industry is embracing alternative fuels and future transport solutions. All the manufacturers used the show as an opportunity to highlight electric and hybrid vehicles, with some omitting diesel products from their stands altogether.”

Volkswagen Group

The hometown advantage of Volkswagen Commercial vehicles showed in Hall 12 where 50 current production vehicles filled the stand with 21 more vehicles in the outdoor exhibition area. Visitors could also drive an additional 37 vehicles on the test track.

Volkswagen presented new solutions ranging from the Cargo e-bike to the e-Crafter, for sustainable mobility for goods and people in urban areas. Additionally, the retro look of the I.D. Buzz Cargo echoing the appearance of the Type 2 Microbus represented a modern day take with an all-electric powertrain and Level 4 autonomous driving features. The company says that a production version of the I.D. Buzz could be in showrooms as early as 2021.

Groupe Renault

Bringing an extreme vision of last-mile delivery to life, the Groupe Renault EZ-PRO is an autonomous delivery concept featuring shared customisable robo-pods. EZ-PRO keeps a field-based human concierge for special deliveries and driverless robo-pod fleet management. With modular robo-pods for flexible shipping, the EZ-PRO is a platform designed for delivery companies, logistic operators, retailers and consumers.

Renault also took the opportunity to reveal the new Master ZE. Available as a short, medium or long wheelbase panel van at 3.1t GVW, the Master ZE will also be available with a low loader Luton body.



Deutsche Post subsidiary StreetScooter GmbH and Ford-Werke GmbH are entering a partnership to manufacture battery-electric delivery vehicles creating an important boost for e-mobility in Germany. Taking the chassis of the Ford Transit, the vehicle will be equipped with a battery-electric drive train and fitted with a special body based on Deutsche Post and DHL specifications.

Ford reveals at the show also included the Plug-in Hybrid (PHEV) Transit Custom, currently undergoing trials in London and the facelifted two-tonne Ford Transit, with new front-end styling, upgraded cab and dashboard.

DAF Trucks

Electro-mobility was uppermost in the minds of the UK’s best-selling truck brand. Launching the CF Electric at the show, DAF Trucks is targeting the heavy truck sector with a new electric design for urban distribution work.

Designed to work on 40-tonne articulated distributions, the zero-emission 4×2 tractor unit can collect semi-trailers from outside emissions restricted zones and draw them in, making it ideal for operations within urban areas where single or double-axle trailers are typically used.

DAF suggests the CF Electric will travel for 100km (62 miles) on a single charge and has rapid-charging capability up to 80 per cent within 30 minutes, or a full charge in around 90 minutes. Powered by a 210W electric motor with a 170kWh lithium-ion battery, the first series of electric trucks will be heading out on trial to major customers in mainland Europe over the next 24 months.


Nissan exhibited a concept vehicle called ‘Navara Dark Sky’, featuring a mobile astronomy lab. Built in partnership with the European Space Agency (ESA), the concept included Nissan’s ProPilot driver assist technology and incorporated an ‘observatory-class’ telescope on a bespoke trailer.


Hyundai showed its bold fuel cell truck indicating the technology would help establish the brand in Europe. Currently, there is no confirmation for a right-hand-drive variant for the UK market.


Engine giant, Cummins, focused on diesel at the show by displaying a concept emissions control system capable of reducing emissions levels in line with expected Euro VII regulations due within the next 10 years.


The new Citroen Berlingo and Peugeot Partner van along with sister van range, the Vauxhall Combo, is already available to order in the UK and all three received their first public airing at the IAA.


In the Mercedes-Benz hall, the new Sprinter range took centre stage with a concept fuel cell version, the electric eSprinter and sister products, the eVito and the eCanter. Also displayed was the ‘Vision Urbanetic’ concept vehicle. The concept enables on-demand, sustainable and efficient movement of people and goods reducing traffic flow whilst relieving inner-city infrastructures.

The new Actros made its debut featuring cameras instead of rear view mirrors. Designed to allow the driver an uninterrupted view along the side of the truck improving cyclist and pedestrian safety.

BMC Trucks

The Turkish truck maker launched the Tugra HGV into a booming cacophony of a dozen drummers, dramatic smoke rose from the floor as the cloth came off the brand’s new Tugra heavy-duty truck. BMC will offer the Tugra in seven configurations, from construction to long haul. The cab-over truck has an imposing front design with thick horizontal bars and a wide stance.


IVECO made history at IAA 2018 with its low emission area keeping their stand 100% diesel free stand, preferring to present solutions to sustainable and zero emissions transport. The 18 display vehicles highlighted sustainable solutions ranging from electric city buses to long-haul LNG trucks.

IVECO also celebrated the 40th Anniversary of the Daily, commemorating the vehicle's history with a Limited Edition personalised with a specially created design.


Convertors were out in force at the show. US temperature-controlled specialists Thermo-King collaborating with Northgate Vehicle Rentals launched an electric fridge van. Based on the Citroen Berlingo EV it uses a power take-off from the van’s battery system to power the fridge unit, guaranteeing zero emissions and noise-free operation.

Old timers

Away from the high intensity bright lights and glitz of the main show area, set aside in Hall 21, classics from a bygone era brought back childhood memories for many visitors. Preserved and lovingly restored to former glories, vans and trucks from Borgward, Skoda, Bussing-Nag, Barkas, Magirus-Deutz and Henschel attracted enthusiasts with misty eyes.

Andy Picton, Chief Commercial Vehicle Editor says, “With over 13 miles walked in two days, the IAA Commercial Vehicle Show really is an unmissable event. With a vast array of commercial vehicles from across the world, every view is different. If you love commercial vehicles, bring your walking shoes, the 68th IAA Commercial Vehicle Show begins on the September 24 2020 and runs to the October 1 2020.”

About the author

Andy Picton

Andy PictonChief Commercial Vehicle Editor

Having worked previously for Barclays Asset Finance and LeasePlan in the commercial vehicle sector, Andy joined Glass’s in 2002 as part of the Commercial Vehicle team working closely with manufacturers, leasing and insurance companies, traders, dealers and auction houses. He was promoted to Chief Commercial Vehicle Editor in 2016 and manages our industry-leading team of valuation experts. He loves football, music and obviously commercial vehicles.