India to host its first-ever FISITA World Automotive Congress in Chennai

by Autocar Pro News Desk , 28 Aug 2018


L-R: Venkatraj, DDG, SAE India; N Balasubramanian, chair – Organising Committee, FISITA 2018; Dr Bala K Bharadvaj, president, SAE India; Dr Pawan Goenka, patron, FISITA 2018 and MD, Mahindra & Mahindra; Murli M Iyer, executive global advisor, SAE International and Dr Aravind Bharadwaj, chair – Steering Committee, FISITA 2018 and CTO, Mahindra FES.

The first week of October 2018 will be a momentous one for India and the automotive industry. It is when FISITA World Automotive Congress – a congregation of international automotive leaders and experts –  will be held in Chennai.

FISITA World Automotive Congress is a biennial event that was first organised in 1947 in Paris. SAEINDIA is hosting the 37th edition of the event at the Chennai Trade Centre from October 2-5. This year the theme for the four-day event is ‘Disruptive Technologies for Affordable and Sustainable Mobility’.

FISITA-International Federation of Automotive Engineering has 37 member societies globally. With disruptive technologies in the automotive industry gaining significant momentum and India being a hub for IT and software development, the event will help participants from all around the world in not only exchanging ideas but also in brainstorming the challenges and changes that these new trends offer.

There will be 5 Plenary Sessions in which experts from India and abroad would address the key disruptions in the automotive industry namely connected, electric, autonomous, shared mobility and concluding panel discussion on policy frame for the disruptive technologies. Two ‘Leaders forums’ would find answers to major questions in front of the automotive industry. There will be 75 technical sessions which will see the presentation of 305 latest research papers selected out of over 1200 abstracts submitted by authors from across the world.

The Student Congress will witness 30 topnotch researches done by students from national and international universities. An educators’ forum would focus on how to bridge the gaps between academia and industry and steps needed to turn institutes in to innovative solution provider for the automotive industry. There will also be technology demonstration by engineering students at the ‘Island of Excellence’.

Global platform to address current and future challenges
Addressing the media, Dr Pawan Goenka, managing director, Mahindra & Mahindra, and the patron for the FISITA 2018 Steering Committee, said, “Since 1947, the FISITA World Automotive Congress has been a forum for industry experts, engineers and executives to exchange ideas and discuss trends that will drive the automotive industry forward. It is a matter of pride for India to host the 37th edition of the FISITA World Automotive Congress for the very first time.”

He added, “Globally, the automotive industry is going through a period of disruption where new technologies and newer business models are being adopted that can potentially disrupt and change the existing order. By bringing together global experts, FISITA 2018 will provide the right platform to Indian automobile industry to look at the transforming scenario and recommend path-breaking initiatives to cope with the challenges to find affordable and sustainable mobility solutions within the disruptive framework.”

In his address, Dr Bala Bharadvaj, managing director, Boeing India engineering and technology centre and president of SAEINDIA 2018-20, said that SAEINDIA is delighted to host FISITA in India for the first time. SAEINDIA is the largest ally of SAE International working together for over 20 years to conduct various activities for the mobility community and enhance technical interchange among leaders from across the industry, academia and students. Consisting of over 50,000 members across India, SAEINDIA has organised events such as the International Mobility Conference (with SAE International), ITEC India (with IEEE), among others.

Bharadvaj mentioned that SAEINDIA has been hosting marquee events such as BAJA SAEINDIA since 2007, SUPRA Student Formula since 2011, EFFICYCLE since 2010, benefitting thousands of engineering students throughout the country. SAEINDIA’s hosting FISITA will help increase the collaboration with their international colleagues and advance the state of art in the mobility industry.

Dr Arvind Bharadwaj, chief technology officer, Farm Equipment Sector, Mahindra & Mahindra and chairman, FISITA 2018 Steering Committee, gave an overview of FISITA World Congress 2018 and stated topics for plenary sessions and leadership forum have been carefully chosen to reflect the key ingredients of the theme in the global context. Experts who have accepted to speak on various subjects have demonstrated core competence and international expertise to deliver the right message to the knowledgeable audience.

Murli Iyer, global advisor, SAE International and VP Americas – FISITA said, “Since 1947, the FISITA World Automotive Congress has taken place in iconic, international locations of importance to the motor industry. Now, as the traditional industry is evolving into the mobility services sector of tomorrow, we are delighted to be heading to India for the first time as we look forward to hosting the 37th FISITA World Automotive Congress in Chennai, together with our colleagues at SAEINDIA.”

He commended the theme chosen for the Congress as truly contemporary and futuristic in its approach and expected positive solutions to the issues and concerns facing the industry in terms of the congenial policy framework and supporting infrastructure.

N Balasubramaniam, deputy vice-president, product engineering, Renault Nissan Technology and Business Centre India and chairman, FISITA 2018 organising committee, said, “The Indian automotive industry has risen in unison to support FISITA 2018 with generous sponsorship and patronage.” He added the concurrent exposition along with the FISITA Congress has attracted participation from both India and abroad, with a display area of 1,800 square metres for cutting-edge technology including new launches and a Ride-n-Drive area for a live demonstration. He indicated presentation of over 300 technical papers in 70 sessions selected after a rigorous scrutiny on every one of the important topics concerning the automotive industry.

With India being the go-to destination in the future of the automotive industry, FISITA 2018 World Automotive Congress is expected to accelerate the movement.