Santa Barbara Autowerks Team
We have a passion for German automobiles. We know they are special and require specialized care. With over 40 combined years of experience in the industry, our knowledgeable staff is committed to providing our customers with the utmost detailed and personalized automotive care. We look forward to serving you!
Peter Van Wingerden
Master Technician & Owner
Peter was born and raised in Santa Barbara County. His interest in cars stems back from childhood where he was always tinkering and playing with cars. This interest became a passion. He enrolled in and graduated from the automotive program at the local college. A true race car enthusiast at heart, he wrenched, made modifications and upgrades to his personal cars for race track events in his parents garage. Soon family and friends turned to Peter for all their automotive care.
Peter has over 20 years of automotive experience as a technician and is ASE Master Certified and Mercedes factory trained. Peter worked for the local Mercedes Benz dealership for eight years where accolades kept accumulating. He received the highest recognition by Mercedes-Benz six consecutive years. He was invited to the Mercedes-Benz factory in Stuttgart, Germany in 2003 to celebrate that achievement and was recognized again as a “MBUSA Master Technician” in 2005, one of only six technicians in Southern California. Frustrated with the lack of personal care and meticulous attention to customers’ automobiles, Peter opened up his own German automotive shop in 2005 with that mindset. He is set out to offering his customer the personalized detailed care of an independent shop, but with the knowledge and expertise of a dealership.
Aaron was born in Denver and moved to California when he was eight years old. He has always liked cars and taking things apart to see how they work. His love of working on cars started after high school when he got a job working at a dealership. This became a passion. Aaron moved to Santa Barbara and enrolled in the automotive program at the local college. After starting the program, he was offered a TA (teaching assistant) position for the department and spent the next few years co-teaching others who shared the same passion. Besides working on cars, Aaron can be found wondering all of Santa Barbara pursuing his second passion— taking pictures.
Hector’s passion for the automotive industry started as an adolescent, watching his father repair American Classic muscle cars. Learning from him, Hector started wrenching on his own car. All aspect of cars from concept to finish fascinated him and led him to pursue more into the automotive industry. After experiencing some terrible service of his own at automotive repair shops, Hector decided he would work in that industry with a better appreciation for customer service.
Hector has 12 years of automotive industry experience. He started in the parts department honing his knowledge of parts; specifically with German automobiles, and eventually became Service Advisor. The ability to relate with and to better educate customers about the service being performed on their vehicle made him the trusted face in the service department.
Toby was born a third generation German automotive technician. He grew up helping his dad in the shop; sweeping the floor and sorting parts for his allowance. Once he was old enough to have his own car, Toby spent his free time working on and modifying his car. He spent a few years competing in the local autocross circuit and did several high speed track days in his modified VW Golf. His penchant for working on cars evolved into a career that he is still just as passionate about now as he was back then.
After 5 years working with his father at the shop in Minneapolis, Toby rang in the new decade by moving to San Francisco at the start of 2010. He quickly fell in love with California and all of its natural beauty and rugged terrain. After nearly six years of working as the Head Diagnostic Technician at a top German specialty shop in the heart of San Francisco, Toby decided to head south to Santa Barbara in 2015. When he isn’t working, he can be found mountain biking, snowboarding, backpacking, riding his motorcycle, and spending time with his girlfriend and dog on the beach.