Builder - Owner Superior Autoworks
Eddie Denkenberger is an award-winning builder, located in Frederica Delaware. specializing in custom competition automobiles. Two time Great 8 winner.
Ed Denkenberger, II, owner and operator of Superior Auto Works, Frederica, Delaware is an artist/builder in the automobile custom and restoration community with few equals. Although he is a self-proclaimed cornfield restorer, for his clients he creates golden harvests that achieve recognition and awards at the highest levels of the industry.
Ed did not begin with an established mentor: he started his business from scratch, studied, worked hard, and has essentially become a thirty-year “overnight success”: building his reputation one vehicle at a time. Ed has, long-since his formative days as a welder and fabricator, captured his dream and mastered his trade of creating top-tier custom vehicles, and recreating concours classics to their original or better-than original state. Ed’s shop is most frequently staffed solely by himself, although he has been fortunate from time-to-time to have had the able assistance of quality people. Those of us who know him call it a one-man shop.
Ed is a broad-spectrum artist. Not limited to body production, he also designs and creates custom chassis and performs award-winning fiberglass fabrication and reconstruction. As remarkable as are these skills, his “deep” custom and restorative paint is a continual show-stopper.
Ed has a motto:
“If you can imagine it, you can achieve it.
If you can dream it, you can be it.”
To that end, possibly Ed’s greatest attribute is his ability to work with his clients. He involves them in the build far beyond just the design phase. If you want to participate and have minimal or considerable skills and lots of energy, he’ll involve you. Want homework? Ed will happily instruct and guide you to positive ends. Your level of involvement depends on you – to a point of course. Then enter Ed and his unique skill sets. Your ideas about your vehicle, blended with Ed’s will result in something far more than you had anticipated.
Beginning his career forty years ago, he and wife Lori, established Superior Auto Works in 1996. Since that time Ed has utilized his exceptional conceptual abilities to guide his clients to and through their builds. Ed “visualizes” what others cannot see in the future of their build, and how it should present when completed, including the color choice. When the artist in him takes over, the palette that is his shop is used by him to create for his clients what they want, and more, in a vehicle. His custom-one-off and detailed restoration work includes products from Ford, General Motors, and Chrysler Corporation, to commercial media such as American-LaFrance, Mack, and Reo Speedwagon. Ed is “hands on” and is responsible for more than thirty complete turn-key builds, many of which have successfully competed locally and nationally. The results of his artistry are often “feature vehicles” at national events.
Ed’s work has been recognized by multiple leading publications in the automotive industry that promote automobile and truck customization and restoration. Just to mention a few of these periodicals: cover stories in Hemmings Muscle Machine, and features in such as NSRA Street Scene, Street Rodder, Hot Rod and Custom Chronicle, Corvette, Super Chevy, Classic Truck, and Trucking. Many others have imparted their readership with Ed’s work.
As important as these publications are in publicizing what the builders are producing, without the industry awards, outstanding builders such as Ed would not be recognized. Among the many honors Ed has achieved are a few as follows: 2012 and 2018 Ridler finalists, multiple ISCA, AACA, NCCC, and Goodguy awards, 2012 AACA Junior and Senior National Champion awards, and Street Rodder 2017 Top 100. 2015 saw him achieve the ISCA overall Custom Championship, and being published with two vehicles pictured in the 2015 Axalta paint calendar, for the creation of amazing custom colors and vehicles. The commercial trucks have garnered Ed six championships in the Delaware Fire Convention competition. In 2018 he was runner-up in the Hot August Nights Gold Cup. Arguably the most prestigious recognition received by any builder was at SEMA 2018, where he was conferred the Mother’s Shine Award.
Ed’s work speaks for itself, as a visit to his web site or immaculate shop will attest. Or better yet, attend a show where one or more of his client’s cars, or his personal cars are on display. You might also find Ed at a show providing a restoration seminar or serving as a judge. If so, stop and say hello. Ed loves to talk cars!