Automechanika Birmingham, the UK’s leading exhibition for the automotive aftermarket and vehicle production industry, has drawn to a close, with 10,200 automotive industry personnel visiting the highly successful 2018 event.
The event featured 500 exhibitors from 26 countries covering a floor space of 9400 square metres. More than 120 companies exhibited at Automechanika Birmingham for the first time including: AA Garage Guide, Snap-On, Ceramex, GSF Car Parts and Wurth Electronics.
Immediate post-event feedback highlighted a “quality” visitor in attendance and this, coupled with an increased ratio of visitors to exhibitors, meant the event delivered an excellent opportunity for the automotive industry to come together, network and do business.
The event, now in its third year, will run again in 2019 before moving biennially to alternate with Automechanika Frankfurt. Leading suppliers have already signed up to Automechanika Birmingham 2019 including Bosch, ZF, Denso, Hella, Group, MANN + HUMMEL, NGK, Valeo, Yuasa and Bilstein.
Reflecting the vibrancy of the independent automotive aftermarket, the new for 2018 “Garage Quarter” was a major highlight with independent garages flocking to see the very latest products and services from more than 130 suppliers, as well as a Garage Social area, for visitors to network and meet similar minded businesses.
The Workshop Training Hub attracted a large audience throughout the event, where visitors heard a number of wide-ranging presentations, discussions on the current state of the automotive industry and, live demonstrations on new product technology.
It was also the setting of the much-anticipated Garage of the Year awards final. The winner, Hillclimb Garage of High Wycombe, took to the stage to collect the award and a £1000 cash prize.
With new product launches dominating the Aftermarket hall, along with announcements of key distribution agreements signed between companies, the event offered more than 70 hours of seminars, hosting industry experts who delivered sessions covering daily workplace challenges, industry developments and advanced technology.
Returning for another year, the Vehicle Production hall hosted the increasingly successful “Meet the Buyer” and “Open Forum” events, hosted by SMMT. The events were successful in bringing together automotive buyers and suppliers to build relationships between OEMs, tier one suppliers and the supply chain.
Innovation was also a key theme in the Vehicle Production hall, with an enthralling debate by the Women in Innovation panel, a Who’s Who of key industry influencers.
Other key ‘innovation’ highlights included Motorsport Valley Innovation®. Presented by the Motorsport Industry Association (MIA), and sponsored by Staubli, this interactive area demonstrated cutting edge technologies in the motorsport and high-performance engineering industry.
Simon Albert, Managing Director, Automechanika Birmingham, said: “It’s been a fantastic event and has further developed the identity of Automechanika Birmingham going forward, underlining our commitment to unite the entire automotive industry. We are delighted with the quality and quantity of senior professionals who attended, as well as the number of independent garages that visited the hugely popular Garage Quarter.”
Next year’s event at the NEC Birmingham will take place from 4 to 6 June 2019, with more exhibitor and show announcements to follow.