Classic cars off to a roaring start at Automechanika in Frankfurt

Automotive professionals from around the world will be getting together in Frankfurt Sept. 10-14, 2024, to discuss the latest trends in the classic and collectible car business under the motto “Where passion meets business.”

Automotive professionals from around the world will be getting together in Frankfurt Sept. 10-14, 2024, to discuss the latest trends in the classic and collectible car business under the motto “Where passion meets business.”

The trade show offers an extensive program packed with presentations, events and guided tours. Topics include digitalization, new technologies, recruiting the next generation, training and professional development. The Automechanika Classic Car podcast is already introducing some of the players in the new international network.

Demand for classic cars is a global phenomenon that shows no signs of slowing. In fact, sales in the worldwide classic car market have increased by an average of 8.8 percent annually over the past four years, reaching a total of 39.9 billion US dollars in 2023 (source: Statista). As a leading international trade fair brand, Automechanika is leveraging its events around the globe to establish a new B2B network in the classic car sector. This effort is being kicked off in Frankfurt, where more than 300 exhibitors have already announced that they will be presenting products for the classic car business in the Parts & Components, Diagnostics & Repair and Body & Paint product areas. There will also be various panel discussions and presentations featuring respected international industry players in which a variety of issues will be discussed, including: What can be done to get young people interested in the classic car business and help them get training and qualifications? Where can digital solutions be deployed in the private customer segment? What will be necessary to ensure a successful business in future?

Properly equipped and staffed workshops are essential for the maintenance and restoration these vehicles. Olaf Mußhoff, Director of Automechanika Frankfurt: “At Automechanika in Frankfurt, interested workshops can network directly with the professionals in the classic car sector and share ideas on such important topics as parts procurement, trends and changes in the field, along with a variety of other relevant subjects like finding the right paintwork solutions. To make this possible, we are working with our partners and experienced experts to create a programme that has a lot to offer.” In addition to networking, training and professional development, there will also be opportunities to see historical vehicles live and in person at the trade fair, where enthusiasts like Italy’s world-class collector Corrado Lopresto will be exhibiting selected show cars – including award-winning vehicles. The very first “Rhine-Main Classic Rallye” and its 100 participating classic and collectible cars will also be paying a visit to the Frankfurt exhibition grounds. There will even be some extraordinary exhibits for motorcycle fans. 

Brand new format: the Automechanika Classic Car podcast

A new classic car podcast series went online in late March. Initiated and moderated by classic car expert Jürgen Book, this new Automechanika format is being supported by the trade journal FML and its Editor-in-Chief Wolfgang Auer. Every month, the podcast features classic car enthusiasts that visitors can meet in person at the trade fair in September. The podcast’s six episodes focus on such topics as business models, challenges and visions – as well as a few personal anecdotes. 

The roster of guests includes Ande Votteler and his successor Dennis Kissling, who are of the opinion that vehicles should be left as close to their original state as possible. They also report on how they successfully managed the handover to the next generation in their own business. Also included in the list of guests are Mike Kastrop and Pauline Louwman, a dedicated team from the Netherlands whose “Talents4Classic” foundation helps young people deal with the difficulties they encounter when starting out in the field. Mike Kastrop explained: “While working together on historical vehicles, we want to inspire talented young people, revealing new perspectives and helping to build their confidence.”

In another episode, Tobias Reichle and Florian Urbitsch, Managing Directors of the “Nationalen Automuseums The Loh Collection”, discuss the origins of their world-class museum and how a professional development concept for classic car experts has supplemented their mission. Other podcast guests include Wolfgang Henseler, Professor for Intermedia Design, Managing Creative Director at the Sensory Minds agency, race car driver, and not least passionate fan of classic cars, and Robert Müller, who is working with his newly established “Clubrebellen” consulting agency to free the classic car business of its fusty image. Eucon Group, data specialists from Münster, talk about how they have expanded their global automotive data portfolio to include data from classic and collectible cars. This includes technical specifications, component groups, parts and spare parts, as well as the places where they can be obtained. Eucon is a partner to leading agencies and manufacturers and makes this data service available to all market participants. 

All of the podcast episodes will be available on the Automechanika Classic Car website (automechanika-classics.com), as well as on SpotifyAmazon Music and Castbox.


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