Automotive Trimmer

OFO No: 684906

Other names for Automotive Trimmer:

  • Auto Trimmer / Upholsterer
  • Automotive Component Upholsterer
  • Car Trimmer / Upholsterer
  • Motor Trimmer / Upholsterer
  • Vehicle Trimmer / Upholsterer


Youtube clip – Merseta’s – Automotive Trimmer


What is an Automotive Trimmer?

Do you enjoy TV shows like ‘Pimp my Ride’, ‘Overhaulin’ or ‘Counting Cars’? Are you passionate about cars and have an eye for detail … considering a career as an Automotive Trimmer might be a road worth traveling.

Automotive Trimmers are like ‘car upholsterers’ who are specialised tradesmen that repair, modify and create new internal furnishings of motor cars.

For example:

  • seats and headrests
  • roof linings
  • boot linings
  • floors
  • door interiors etc

Automotive Trimmers can work for themselves, in automotive garages or in automotive factories.

What does an Automotive Trimmer do?

  • reads patterns and sketches
  • chooses the right type of material for every part of the vehicle
  • measures quantities of material needed
  • orders material needed
  • marks and cuts materials according to patterns
  • removes seats, handles etc before commencing ‘trimming’
  • uses tools such as scissors, needles, tongs, hammers, screwdrivers
  • uses special sewing machines
  • replaces all hinges, handles etc
  • checks that the seats of the vehicle are fitted in the correct position after their work is finished

Are you … ?

  • passionate about cars?
  • interested in materials?
  • neat and thorough?
  • a perfectionist?
  • responsible?
  • strong, especially your hands?
  • accurate and patient?

How do I become an Automotive Trimmer?

  • MerSETA

Approved and accredited MerSETA training companies: Type your trade choice in and click on FIND.


  • Apprenticeship
  • Trade Test


  • Learnership – Automotive Repair and Maintenance (Automotive Body Repairer) Level 2
  • Learnership – Automotive Body Repairer Level 3 and 4
  • Trade Test


  • Learnership – Furniture Production: Upholstery NQF Level 2, 3 and 4
  • Trade Test


  • National Certificate: Motor Body Repairing: N1, N2 (Motor Body Repairing)
  • National Certificate: Engineering Studies: N3
  • All can be done at a lot of TVET (FET) colleges
  • Workplace experience
  • Trade Test


  • Artisan Internship
  • Trade Test


  • RPL (Recognised Prior Learning) for Artisans: CLICK HERE
  • If you have already been working a long time as a Automotive Trimmer without qualifications, you may be able to get your qualification through RPL
  • Trade Test


  • CLICK HERE to check for a training institution near you to see what they offer.
  • Make sure you understand their entry requirements for each course.
  • To avoid scams, make sure your institution is registered with the Department of Higher Education. 
  • CLICK HERE to check accredited Private Higher Education Institutions. 

Private Place:


OTHER CAREERS TO CONSIDER:  Upholsterer … or … Automotive Vehicle Spray Painter … or … Interior Designer

Is becoming a Automotive Trimmer the right career choice for me?