Schaeffler hails ‘best ever’ Automechanika Birmingham

Exhibition stand offered visitors a glimpse at the ‘garage of tomorrow’

The stand, located in the OESAA village, featured a striking workshop setting with a Schaeffler BMW M4 DTM car, plus augmented and mixed reality exhibits.

According to Schaeffler, it grabbed the attention of technicians and distributors alike, with feedback from visitors overwhelmingly positive.

Because there was so much for visitors to see and do, the stand was constantly busy across all three days, with Schaeffler UK Aftermarket marketing and communications manager, Jeff Earl, describing it as “one of the most exciting, interactive and innovative visitor experiences we have ever produced”.

Visitors took full advantage of the high-tech exhibits, which allowed technicians to get up close-and-personal with a technical ‘helpline’ of the future.

Wearing goggles, which relayed heads-up instructions, technicians were able to carry out a simulated timing chain replacement using real tools and components, or learn about the inner workings of a dual mass flywheel.

They were designed to show how repairs could be made easier and quicker in the future, utilising support from the likes of Schaeffler, with its interactive, live and online instructions.

Switching to augmented reality, visitors were able to use an iPad to scan each individual component of a complete FAG chassis system, breaking down and exploring each single part using images and videos, as well as giving lots of hints and tips.

One of the visiting technicians, the manager of a new start-up business, said: “We’re already purchasing a lot of Schaeffler equipment from a local distributor, and it’s nice to be able to come onto the stand and have a chat with the REPXPERTs and discover more about the products and what they’ve got planned for the future.”

Another technician from an independent workshop added: “Schaeffler is always developing innovative ideas, so it’s useful to see what the latest developments are.

“As an independent workshop, we don’t always see these products until two or three years down the line.

“It’s important we futureproof our business; we need to keep up-to-date with the times and adapt with them, rather than be left behind.”

Automechanika Birmingham 2019 was also the perfect platform for Schaeffler to launch the REPXPERT app.

Designed to make it simpler and quicker for members to access the online portal, REPXPERTs can now source part numbers and product details for all Schaeffler repair solutions, as well as being able to access invaluable technical data – all from the palm of their hands.

Meanwhile, around 300 Schaeffler VIPs were treated to an informative presentation and audio tour, followed by lunch on the stand, before taking away an exclusive REPXPERT technician’s messenger bag.

Another 300 REPXPERT VIPs also enjoyed lunch and a goody bag, before many of them took the opportunity to enter the INA Torque Challenge competition.

Schaeffler gave away eight torque wrenches every day to technicians that performed the best after learning about the importance of using correct torque settings.

Finally, Edd China visited the stand on Wednesday and Thursday to sign his new book, Grease Junkie.

For more information on REPXPERT, please click here.