Automechanika Frankfurt Names 2022 Body & Paint Competition Winner

Automechanika Frankfurt has awarded first prize in the Automechanika Body & Paint Competition to Sebastian Schunder from Eckental (Bavaria).

Five body and paintwork professionals entered the 2022 competition, which carried the theme ‘Mobility in transition’. This year’s panel, which was expanded to nine members and included BodyShop NewsMichel Malik, met for two and a half hours at the trade fair to judge painted car bonnets according to technical perfection, creative design, and skilled craftsmanship.

The judging panel described Schunder’s entry as powerful and crafted to perfection. “The colours chosen are both discreet and ideally suited to the theme. In short, the whole thing is extremely well done. Sometimes less really is more,” the panel said.

Driven by sustainability concerns, Schunder, who was sponsored by SATA, took a used, slightly damaged bonnet from an Audi A6 Avant and reused masking paper, while also letting the clear coat dry overnight to save heat and energy. The project was completed in five weeks.

Second place was awarded to Rene Werl, who also won the people’s choice award with his ‘Deep Candy’ design. Werl described the challenges of his design, which was initially created on his smartphone and continually refined as the competition approached: “[The challenge was] trying to depict the theme in a way that is both clear and easily understood by the viewer, using the right techniques to create striking motifs, and making sure that the result does justice to the theme,” Werl said.

Holger Schmidt, who took third place, making his second appearance in the competition, said the event supported the federal association’s efforts to bring new talent to the industry. “Unfortunately, the car painting profession does not have the best reputation. That is why we decided to do more to reach out to young people. More than 500 young people came to the stand during the five-day trade fair for the chance to use airbrush guns to paint miniature cars. There were pupils here who had received their 10th-year school certificate, as well as vocational school students,” Schmidt said.

The bonnets created by Guido Folco and Peter Litger, who were awarded fourth and fifth prize by the panel, told stories through artistic expertise coupled with passion. They were rewarded with paint guns from SATA’s latest series.

Folco said he was relieved when the submission deadline was postponed due to the pandemic. “Every day after I finished with my job, I worked from 4 to 8 PM on the car hood for four entire weeks.” Folco used ‘electric paints’, something that made time management considerably more difficult.

Jens Gersmeier, Marketing Specialist at BASF Coatings, was particularly struck by the team spirit exhibited throughout the competition. “We’re delighted to be here with two entrants, Rene Werl and Holger Schmidt, as Team Glasurit. They really helped each other with their car bonnets, and that was a great experience.”