The UK may be out of Europe nowadays, but let's face it, we're not really out of Europe, are we? Not when it comes to car culture anyway. In fact, the European shows are as strong as they've always have been, and one of the best when it comes to the sheer quality of cars on display has to be Tuning World Bodensee which takes place every year in southern Germany.
This huge international trade fair takes over the world-renowned Messe Friedrichshafen, on the picturesque Lake Constance and you could look at it as a bit like a European SEMA Show, or Autosport International. in other words, it's the place for all manner of companies to present their wares to Europe. Tuning parts, auto services, tools, wheels, detailing and everything in between, it's certainly one of the bigger events on the calendar. As you'd expect from such a coveted high-end event - there's some pretty special builds that turn up, too. Some of the very best that Europe has to offer.
The only minor problem of course, is that the bottom of Germany is a fair old whack from the Auto Finesse Detailing Academy here in the UK, especially when you're planning on taking a full complement of project cars, a MSRT media van and then towing an AirStream pop up shop. But then again, for such a prestigious event, there was no way that we wasn't going to bring along some of our very finest projects. Not least our Caddy V2 build, Liberty Walk kitted S15 and Pandem GR Yaris. Add that to a couple of top Porsches and our long wheelbase VW Transporter, and you can see why it made sense to load up a full artic and sent a load of vehicles ahead. The good news though, is that we'd soon been meeting those in Germany and have the chance to get them out on the road immediately after the show to attend just a couple more events.
And that's exactly why we needed so many cars out there. Tuning World Bodensee would be just the start of a little week-long European tour that would also include a journey to Italy for XS Classic and XS Car Night. But first, we'd have to get our crew over the water and to the "show on the lake', with a quick stop-off at our European Distribution Centre next to the Nürburgring, to load up with plenty of top detailing products…
It's a big old venue the Messe Friedrichshafen, and with plenty of space our AirStream could really come into its own. Obviously dragging this beast across an entire continent comes with its downside but there's a couple of huge upsides, too. First it allows us to get our display set up quickly, leaving us more time to do what we do best - perfect the finish of our display cars (and help out all the other show car owners). But most of all, there's no denying that it's an impressive sight, it makes our stand pretty unique to say the least.
All this though, is well before the gates open, we even had a bit of time to pick out some of our favourite builds before the crowds rolled in. Suffice to say that we didn't exactly have time on our hands once the show was open to the public!
There's no prizes for guessing that the bulk of the cars we're from the European manufacturers, it simply would have been weird if that wasn't the case. But that's not to say that there wasn't quite a few surprises thrown in for good measure… and it wasn't just our Yaris and S15 either.
What's most important though was that the standard of cars was nothing short of jaw dropping, with plenty of stuff that even we haven't seen before. If you don't believe us just check our this lot… and just so you don't miss any, be sure to take a swipe though all three of our extra special galleries along the way!
It has to be said that we absolutely loved this year's Tuning World Bodensee but - apart from saying thanks to everyone who came over to the stand for their essential products - it wasn't the end of the tour for us. No, with the German instalment now firmly in the rear-view mirror it was on to the next and we could finally get our cars and vans out on the road for the blast down to Italy. The next stop was the XS Classic show, closely followed by the mighty XS Car Night. You can see the full show reports, and many others, over in the Shows section of our blog.