Tokyo Motor Show 2019

ByJason Gatewood
Sep 27, 2019

Tokyo Motor Show 2019

Japan’s motorcar industry is one of, if not the most important exporter and revenue generator in the economy here. Brands like Toyota, Honda, Nissan, and Mitsubishi are known all over the world for their quality and innovation. Not to mention more than a few people swear by these brands. So it should come as no surprise that the bi-annual Tokyo Auto Show put on by the Japan Automobile Manufacturer’s Association (JAMA) is one of the most attended trade shows in the world.

It is here where the cars that kicked off new technology like hybrid and all-electric power were introduced, and concepts from the practical to the most whimsical dazzle the eye and make us all wish for the future to come at a slightly faster pace.

But Tokyo Motor Show (TMS) is so much more than that; it showcases ALL technologies revolving around getting from point A to B in the automotive world. Two years ago, the focus was on a large interactive experience called Tokyo Connected Lab that showcased a future Tokyo in which all things on the roads will communicate automatically. Driverless vehicles interacting with each other and the environment in real-time to avoid and prevent accidents, traffic jams, and bad weather was one of the big highlights.

This year’s theme of  “Open Future” aims to “offer thrilling vehicle displays and entertaining events, and also enable visitors to see what mobility will look like and how it will be integrated into the urban living experience of the not-so-distant future” by showing off concepts from over 180 automotive companies from around the world.

Also of note is how the show itself has expanded beyond the environs of Tokyo Big Sight and will also include exhibits in the Ariake and Aomi areas that will be connected by a 1.5 km-long “Open Road,” where personal/micro-mobility vehicles along with exhibits and displays are set up outdoors. This along with many other parts of the show such as the test drive area, custom car displays and even an inaugural drone race (!) are now free of charge for adults — kids and teens are always free at this event.

At the “Future Expo” area in the MEGAWEB venue, visitors will have a “typical day in the near future” experience. Visitors will view and interact with the more than 100 items and cutting-edge technologies and services on display. In addition, there will be an e-sports competition set up where top players of the Sony PlayStation game “FIA Gran Turismo Championship 2019 World Tour 5“ will compete in a sanctioned tournament for prizes and ranking.

Among the major unveiling expected:

  • Mazda announcing their first electric and hybrid rotary engine cars
  • Toyota revealing a second-generation hydrogen-powered Mirai sedan along with the second generation of their venerable 86 that may surpass the Supra in their lineup
  • Lexus and Nissan showing off all-electric designs that will launch worldwide in the next 2 years

As you can see, there are all kinds of happenings for the next two weeks for auto aficionados of all types.

Times & Tickets:

Preview Day

October 25 (Fri.) 9:00 – 14:00

General Public Days

October 25 (Fri) 14:00-20:00
October 26 (Sat.) – November 4 (Monday/ Holiday)
Mon.-Sat. 10:00 – 20:00 / Sun, Holiday 10:00 – 18:00

Advance tickets can be purchased online and kept on your smartphone through Etix; otherwise, they can be bought at the venue. If you (or a friend) are good with Japanese, you can visit your local 7-Eleven, FamilyMart or Lawson stores and purchase tickets from the in-store Multicopy machines and kiosks at a discount as well as at many large travel agencies, ticket agencies.


Tokyo Big Sight exhibition hall is located in Odaiba and can be accessed by the Rinkai Line’s Kokusai Tenjijo station (R03) or the Yurikamome Line’s Kokusai Tenjijo Seimon Station (U11).


Images: Logo via

photos by Jason L Gatewood

About the author

Jason Gatewood editor

Our Tokyo based collaborator is a tech nerd, Japanophile, train nut, and a veritable fountain of information on Japan. His current goal is to watch Evangelion and actually "get it", sing every permutation of "Hotel California" at any karaoke gathering, ride every bullet train line, and sample all varieties of ramen throughout Japan. Catch more of his musings at ·