Silverstone to launch Switch Live22 June 2021
Silverstone will next year play host to an all-new experiential motoring event, Switch Live, which is being created to entertain and inform everyone interested in sustainable mobility. Hosted in and around the iconic race venue from 26 to 29 May 2022, Switch Live will offer companies an unrivalled opportunity to showcase their electric cars and mobility solutions to a mainstream consumer audience on road, on the famous Grand Prix circuit and within the venue’s indoor exhibition space.
In developing Switch Live, the organisers placed specific focus on maximising return on investment for exhibitors and partners, and on creating something that is truly experiential and fun for visitors. Recognising the importance of test drives for driving lead generation and sales conversion in modern motor retail, Switch Live will offer exhibitors the opportunity to truly showcase the dynamics of their cars.
Those who exhibit at Switch Live will occupy ‘brand experience hubs’ centred around the Silverstone paddock garages that have been created to suit the demands of Formula One teams. This ensures that space costs, and the associated production expenditure to dress that space, can be kept at minimal levels. It also eradicates the environmental impact associated with the production of large conventional stands.
A mix of dynamic entertainment – many highly interactive – will help pull in the crowds and entertain a family audience. Out on the venue’s world-class race circuit, Switch Live will feature thrilling, high-speed motorsport demonstrations from contemporary and next-generation formulae, and famous race drivers and iconic cars will be on hand to wow the public and put on showcase displays.
Inside the Silverstone Wing will be an entertainment-focused live exhibition – to include virtual-reality experiences; advanced driving simulators; e-sports displays and competitions; immersive soundscape theatre demonstrations and displays of future connected-car technologies. Parts of the facility will be given over to presentations of how motoring can be a sustainable and integrated element of the ‘smart home’ and changing lifestyles.
Not everyone attending Switch Live will be old enough to drive some of the modes of transport on display. However, they will still be able to get behind the wheel thanks to a young driver experience that will provide introductory tuition and sampler driving sessions in a safe environment away from public roads.
For those who want to explore developments in alternative fuel vehicles and green motorsport, an interactive industry forum with expert panel discussions from leading figures will inform and provoke debate.
Responding to calls for a new kind of motoring event
“We have taken feedback from many car manufacturers and other auto sector businesses who are increasingly looking at alternatives to mainstream international motor shows – both because of the very high costs involved, and because of the growing recognition that static vehicle displays are ineffective for engaging with potential customers,” explains Giles Brown, Commercial Director at Switch Live.
“Switch Live will not be an echo chamber for EV-evangelists. It will appeal to a large proportion of consumers – not least because of the planned ban of new petrol and diesel vehicle sales in the UK from 2030. Thanks to its highly interactive format Switch Live will be ideal for launching new car and mobility solutions, both to media and the general public. Crucially, it will make EVs and other forms of electrified personal transport truly accessible to the growing legion of motorists who simply want to better understand, experience and potentially commit to new technologies and make the shift away from the internal combustion engine.”
Stuart Pringle, Managing Director of Silverstone Circuits Limited, added: “Motorsport has historically always helped prompt and promote automotive innovation, so we’re immensely excited to be launching this next-generation, forward-looking motoring and motorsport event at Silverstone, the Home of British Motorsport. Silverstone is determined to lead the race to a sustainable future and Switch Live at Silverstone will provide families with an enlightening, engaging, entertaining and – critically – informative motoring experience, like never before.”
To help drive awareness of Switch Live in its opening year, Silverstone Circuits will harness its extensive customer database of over 300,000 contacts who have attended or shown interest in events previously held at the venue.
Walking the talk
As well as showcasing zero-emissions mobility solutions, the organisers of Switch Live have a target to make the event fully carbon-neutral within the next three years. It will become an exemplar, global-leading sustainable motoring experience and a cornerstone activity for the owners of Silverstone Circuit who are implementing a comprehensive new sustainability strategy.
The first Switch Live event will take place over four days, from 26 to 29 May 2022 – there will be a preview day for media guests and trade and fleet visitors, and then the event will open for members of the general public.