Almost 100,000 fans came to see us at the Essen Motor Show 2021

Back at the heart of the aftermarket: BBS under the umbrella of the KW automotive group

It was really good to be back at the Essen Motor Show – after a pandemic-related interruption, we as the KW automotive Group were able to present a lot of information and new products from our brands in an area of more than 1,000 square meters.

Because there was plenty to display and even more to talk about for every brand we showcased at the Essen Motor Show – from BBS to Reiger Suspension to our SimRacing brands Ascher Racing, RaceRoom and TrackTime, as well as our core brands KW suspensions, ST suspensions and ap Sportfahrwerke.

BBS is back at the heart of the aftermarket

The fact that the renowned alloy wheel manufacturer BBS became a part of the KW automotive group caused highly positive feedback in our market in the summer of 2021. And since the first talks, a lot has already happened between Fichtenberg – the headquarters of KW automotive – and Schiltach in the Black Forest.

Visitors of the Essen Motor Show could see just how much has already been done. The KW and BBS booths utilized a shared space. While KW’s suspension products were in the foreground on one side, everything revolving around BBS wheels was on the other side.

Attendees had the opportunity to meet in person with colleagues from Schiltach to learn about what kind of innovations they can expect from BBS. At the Essen Motor Show, these little insights caused quite an excitement.

The Essen Motor Show premiere of Reiger Suspension, which was founded by Gerard Seesing at the end of the seventies, was also a success. For the first time, the motorsport offroad suspension manufacturer, exhibited in the Ruhr area.

Since 2021, Reiger Suspension is part of the KW automotive group and plays Champions League with its off-road motorsport applications in various motorsport classes and will continue to do so.

At the Reiger appearance, we showed the new civilian off-road dampers and coilovers developed for street 4×4 vehicles. In the future, more and more suspension components will appear in Reiger’s Street & Trail product group.

In off-road motorsports it is an unwritten law that if you want to win, you have to drive Reiger Suspension. At the Dakar Rally, the toughest rally raid in the world, the Reiger Suspension equips numerous types of vehicles including cars, side-by-side protos, side-by-side standards, trucks and quads. Having dominated the rally for years, vehicles equipped with Reiger continue to out perform the competition and win.

In motocross alone, Reiger Suspension has been world champion for all but two years since 1995. Reiger has now accomplished this for 24 years in a row!

Reiger Suspension primarily manufactures motorsport dampers for off-road use – from WRC racing cars, off-road trucks at the Dakar Rally (in Paris) to rally cars competing at the World of X Games that fly spectacularly far through the air.

Even after the most spectacular jumps, the vehicles land safely damped and drive to their next special stage victory or to the next world record.

For those who don’t want to go as extreme as the off-road and rally enthusiasts, ap Sportfahrwerke, our entry-level suspension brand, is an excellent alternative.

For an unbeatable price-performance ratio our ap coilovers offer a good-looking stance, driving fun and of course quality – all engineered in Fichtenberg.

MAKE IT YOURS – – Build and style your kit

The ST customization is becoming more and more important for our brand ST suspensions. Over the past two and a half years, we have greatly expanded our ST customization program.

And we have also expanded our involvement in drift sports. In Europe, for example, we partnered with the Red Bull Driftbrothers, Elias and Johannes Hountondji.

Elias and Johannes compete with their two BMW M4 Competition (G82) cars in the Drift Masters European Championship presented by ST suspensions, as does Steve “Baggsy” Biagioni.

Our 3-way adjustable ST XTA plus 3 coilover suspension was not the only product highlight at our ST booth. For all of our ST coilovers with adjustable top mounts and racing springs, we offer more and more optional spring packages. These are springs that have a different spring rate and, in some cases, a shorter spring length.

Always a magnet for attendees at any show is the 1200 hp Nissan GT-R from Baggsy. At the Essen Motor Show, the Nissan showed off a new design along with a technology upgrade.

SimRacing has been firmly established at the Essen Motor Show for years. Many years ago, we laid the foundation for RaceRoom, and in 2021 we were there with our various SimRacing brands.

Simulations have been so close to reality that some SimRacers has been able to switch from PC to real motorsport. The best example is our colleague, Tim Heinemann, who works in Motorsport Sales during the week, wins SimRacing in the evening and wins races and championships on the weekend in real motorsport.

We presented new hardware from Ascher Racing and TrackTime and held competitions at the Essen Motor Show.

The strengths of the traditional brand BBS, including manufacturing concepts and motorsport, along with technologies and production techniques were a focus at the booth.

BBS’s strengths will also be more actively integrated into our communications in the future. No matter whether it was the flow-forming perfected by BBS or forging technology at the highest level, the passion with which BBS wheels are manufactured and refined could be experienced.

It was the first time that the entire BBS technology was accessible at the booth. Visitors were able to get an idea of the three different production processes and their advantages and characteristics. It became clear what it actually means to manufacture a light-alloy wheel.

Closer to the customer, more diverse in application: BBS is expanding its activities in the aftermarket business. With its milled miniature wheels, BBS gave a glimpse of the future.

During the Essen Motor Show, enthusiasts were able to choose their favorites from a spectrum of many new colors, which we at BBS also want to offer as an option on various wheels in the future.

BBS is one of the most innovative wheel brands in the world. For example, Formula 1 cars will rely exclusively on the BBS brand when switching to the future 18-inch tire generation. The American NASCAR series will also start exclusively with BBS Motorsport wheels beginning in 2022.

Whether coilovers for TUNING, ALL DAY, CLASSIC or RACING – from our new KW booth, everyone found the right suspension from KW for every requirement.

Each and every KW coilover suspension and KW suspension product from the respective category was on display at our booth. For all the (tuning) applications for the road, a current BMW M4 with its FI-R 21 BBS alloy wheels was our demo car.

The flagship of our KW Classic dampers and coilovers for the air-cooled Porsche 911 (F model and G model) were on full display. The struts differ not only by their modern damper inner life, but by the steering knuckles we forged. So to speak, this suspension is a “plug and play” solution for any Porsche enthusiast.

This BMW M3 (E30) was one of the most photographed vehicles of the Essen Motor Show 2021 with images posted and shared on various social media channels. Our KW V3 coilover suspension and the vintage BBS wheels were the highlight on this BMW.

Even with our BMW E30 classic chassis, the original suspension components no longer need to be machined. The front axle struts also have forged steering knuckles.

Finally, the KW Sport Trophy Award was in full view for the public again

When Motorsports presenter Wolfgang Drabiniok’s voice echoes through Hall 3 of the Essen Motor Show, every Nürburgring endurance series fan knows that the KW Sport Trophy Award is being presented.

Non-monetary prizes worth over 10,000 euros were awarded by KW Competition and KW management to the most successful participants in this year’s NLS championship: 1st place Adrenalin Motorsport Team Alzner Automotive, 2nd place W&S Motorsport, 3rd place Team Mathol Racing e.V., 4th place rent2Drive-FAMILIA-racing, 5th place KKrämer Racing, 6th place Team Derscheid Motorsport, 7th place X85racing and 8th place Five-Speed Racing.

Regardless of the motorsport on the circuit, our KW Competition motorsport program continues to grow and includes 5-way, 4-way, 3-way and 2-way performance adjustable and non-adjustable racing dampers as well as complete suspensions.

We offer our vehicle-specific motorsport dampers and complete suspensions as homologated series developments for numerous GT3, GT4, TCR and Cup cars or also as custom-made products for a wide variety of race cars.

KW Competition Motorsport Manager, Thomas Rechenberg, explains the new KW V5 Clubsport suspension to ST Drifter Elias Hountondji.

As you would expect, what works in motorsport, we also adapt for other suspension products, such as our KW Clubsport applications.

For example, we already have three different KW Clubsport coilovers for track day enthusiasts to choose from: the 2-way adjustable KW V3 Clubsport, 3-way adjustable KW V4 Clubsport, and the brand new 4-way adjustable KW V5 Clubsport.

KW Product Names Change for Simplicity and Clarity

At Essen, we also introduced the new KW nomenclature to the visitors and the dealers. We now consistently use the terms “V1”, “V2”, “V3”, “V4”, “V5” and so on in all product categories. This makes it easier for everyone to know immediately what technical features each individual KW suspension product or KW coilover suspension has.

Electric hypercar pioneer Rimac Automobili also relies on KW engineering.

KW automotive has been working for numerous national and international car manufacturers for years. In addition to motorsport applications from KW, more and more selected production vehicles are being equipped with our KW coilovers and KW technologies as an option or even ex-works, such as Rimac Nevera, Ford Focus ST Edition and others.

Part of the big trade show appearance at the Essen Motor Show was also our merchandise – where the full range of accessories and apparel from Hoonigan, KW suspensions, Reiger Suspension and ST suspensions could be purchased at our booth.

We would like to say a big thank you to all our partners, customers and fans at the Essen Motor Show 2021.

Stay healthy and see you at the Essen Motor Show ’22!

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