With less than eight weeks to go before the official opening of Automechanika 2023 at the National Exhibition Centre, Nasrec, Johannesburg and the announcement – on September 5th – of the winners of the highly coveted Innovation Awards, the names of the jury members responsible for evaluating entries have been announced.

“The integrity of the Innovation Awards is very important to us as organisers, and we are extremely pleased with the group of highly qualified and respected automotive experts – representing recognised organisations and representative bodies within the industry – that has been assembled to judge the entries received. They represent the cream of the automotive and related industries, and I am certain that they will do a sterling job of identifying the next best thing in the automotive aftermarket,” Michael Dehn, Managing Director of Messe Frankfurt South Africa, the organiser of Automechanika Johannesburg, explains.

Organisations represented on the 2023 panel of judges include the Retail Motor Industry (RMI), the National Association of Automotive Component and Allied Manufacturers (NAACAM), the National Association of Automobile Manufacturers of South Africa (NAAMSA), the Automotive Industry Export Council (AIEC), the Motor Industry Bargaining Council (MIBCO), the Motor Industry Workshop Association and the Motor Industry Ombudsman of South Africa (MIOSA).

Panel of Judges

  • Beth Dealtry – Analyst – NAACAM
  • Claire Macfie – Editor – Automotive Refinisher
  • Graham Eagle – Industry consultant
  • Jan Schoeman – COO – RMI
  • Johan van Vreden – Motor Industry Ombudsman of South Africa
  • Lesibana Ledwaba – General Secretary – MIBCO
  • Norman Lamprecht – Executive: Trade, Exports and Research – NAAMSA
  • Pieter Niemand – Director – MIWA

“The jury members were hand-picked and, on their shoulders, rests the responsibility of identifying the most innovative and pioneering automotive products that are manufactured, supplied or distributed in South Africa,” says Liana Reiners, convenor of the Innovation Awards. “I commend each and every one of them for their willingness to join the panel of judges and for giving of their time to ensure that each entry receives the attention and consideration that it deserves.”

The jury members are all considered to be leaders in their respective fields, which include mechanics, engineering, macro-economics, import and export, aftermarket retail, business and skills development, transformation, sustainability, technology and marketing. They are committed to holding products to highest standard in terms of design, quality, efficiency, functionality, practicality, value for money, environmental friendliness and innovation and to determine which entry will ultimately walk off with the silverware. Each entry will be scored and ranked and products that achieve the highest marks on a collective basis will be deemed to be finalists in the competition.

There are ten categories in the 2023 competition:

  1. Parts
  2. Accessories & Customising
  3. Driver Assistance & Safety
  4. E-mobility
  5. Data & Connectivity
  6. Diagnostics & Tuning
  7. Repair & Maintenance
  8. Original Equipment Products & Services
  9. IT & Management
  10. Service Station & Car Wash equipment

The cut-off date to enter is midday on Friday, 18 August 2023, and there is no entry fee.


Entrants are requested to submit a completed entry form by e-mail on or before midday on Friday, 18 August 2023. This must include their product motivations, along with hi-resolution pictures of at least 1 Mb in size of the items, as well as the name, e-mail address and telephone number of the person responsible for the submission, along with details of the company he or she represents. Please note that no incomplete or late entries will be accepted. Entries must be sent to the competition’s convenor, Liana Reiners, at the following e-mail address: reinersliana@gmail.com.

Queries or requests for additional information on the Innovation Awards can be sent to the same e-mail address. Alternatively, contact Liana Reiners on 083 407 4600 or via e-mail at reinersliana@gmail.com. Please visit www.automechanika.za.messefrankfurt.com for information on Automechanika Johannesburg 2023. The trade fair runs from 5 – 7 September 2023.

By Admin