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FISITA World Congress starts tomorrow, 25 years after it was last held in Prague

Several of the participants in this week's 38th FISITA World Congress will have attended the last FISITA World Congress that was held 17-11 June 1996 in Prague. The themes of that conference – Powertrains, Chassis and Body Systems, Man-vehicle Road Systems, Vehicle Environment Interface, Integration of Design and Manufacture – are continuing themes and 2021 Congress Chair Jan Macek will pick up on the continuing challenges in his welcome presentation tomorrow (you can read more about that in another Spotlight published earlier today).

This Spotlight brings together some images from the 26th FISITA World Congress in Prague and some others that describe development at the Czech Technical University (CTU) in Prague. Our thanks to Jan Macek and CAS-SAE Honorary President and Automotive Laboratory Manager at the Czech University of Technology in Prague Ing. Branko Remek, CSc for providing these images and accompanying text.

About the XXVI FISITA Congress in Prague

  • Held from Monday 17th to Friday 21st June 1996 with about 1200 participants

  • The first FISITA Youth Congress was held a week before, from Thursday 14th to Sunday 16th June 16

  • The Opening day of Congress had about 120 students attending

  • The FISITA Traveling Fellowship (FTF) covered the two weeks from Monday 10th June to Saturday 22 June and involved 12 participants - each was chair of Students congress

  • In 1996 Remek was responsible for FTF, Students Congress and the Ladies programme

Congress 1996 president & FISITA Gold medal holder Professor Milan Apetaur will open the first FISITA World Congress 2021 roundtable with a speech at 9:00am CEST on Tuesday 14 September. The speech will be followed by the roundtable discussion with Martin Kubů and chaired by Milan Smutný on New Mobility Concepts and Their Affordability. If you read this in time and haven't yet registered click here.

Some history in images

Josef Božek's steam car (1815). Božek was the head of engineering laboratories at the Czech Estates Engineering School (established 1705). The picture above is from the entrance ticket to the public introduction of the car. Josef Božek also designed a steam ship with the same engine in 1817. The image on the right is a functional replica of the Božek car in 2015.

Above left: The main building of the Czech Polytechnical School was built over 150 years ago, shortly after splitting from the Polytechnical Institute. For a complete timeline, please visit After organisational changes between 1950 and 1960, CTU remained with four faculties: Mechanical Engineering, Civil Engineering, Electrical Engineering, and Technical and Nuclear Physics.

Above right: Image of a locally manufactured Tatra 400 electric trolley bus that was produced 1948-1955 stopping opposite the university main building

Above left: Engineering laboratory in the university with Brayton engine (19th century internal combustion engine). Above centre: Highly boosted ship engine made by CKD PRAHA at the CTU car and engine laboratories in 1969. Above right: CTU automotive laboratory in 1970 with chassis dynamometer.

Above: New building of the Centre of Vehicles for Sustainable Mobility (CVUM), 2013, Roztoky u Prahy

Above left: Škoda Auto single cylinder engine with AVL dyno and in-house data acquisition processing software. Above right: Part of CTU Campus, Praha-Dejvice.

PDF presentation about the CTU Josef Božek Research Centre

Above: Click on the image to download a presentation PDF about the Josef Božek Research Centre at CTU. Presentation prepared by Jan Macek for CTU project purposes. Originally used in 2017 but updated since that time.

Many thanks again to Jan Macek and Branko Remek for their material that is used in this post.

Register for the FISITA World Congress now.


About the FISITA World Congress

Since 1947, the FISITA World Congress has been the leading international meeting place for industry experts, engineers and executives to exchange ideas and discuss the trends that drive the automotive industry forward. The theme for the 38th FISITA World Congress is 'From automobile to mobility. New roles. New challenges' and it will take place 14-16 September 2021, with the opportunity for the global audience to join virtually available for the first time. Registration is now open, with the Early Bird and special registration rates available until 31 August 2021.

Content from the 2020 FISITA Web Congress is available within the FISITA Technical Library, while material from previous Congress events back to 1998 is available in the FISITA Store. By the time of this year’s Congress, all the content will be available within the FISITA Technical Library, with free access provided to FISITA members.

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