SEASON 3 | EPISODE 16: “So what do you do? You start a company.” || John Stech, Owner, Shiftgate Consulting

“You hear more and more about EVs coming. You hear about the benefits—you also hear about the concerns…With my clients, I’m trying to help ease customers into that adoption process.”

John Stech’s story is one of an automotive entrepreneur crossing disciplines and crossing continents.

Born in Germany, he moved to the US at a young age. As a professional, he’s gone from developing plastics for car components, to working for European OEMs in various global markets, to consulting as an automotive expert with major players in other industries.

His journey has taken him across the US and around the globe, to cities like Cairo, Moscow, New York City, and more.

On this episode of DNT, Stech tells how he’s now taking his diverse automotive background and applying it in innovative ways, from his work as Founder & Principal of Shiftgate Consulting to his most recent venture starting a car-inspired brand of hot sauce.

Interview Highlights:

  • John gives us a taste of his work at Shiftgate Consulting, helping to advise non-automotive companies who are invested in the shift to EVs.
  • We hear about the intersection between automotive and Hollywood, as Shiftgate matches carmakers with product placement in new movies.
  • John explains how he was inspired during the pandemic to start Left Lane Pepper Company, and what that has taught him about “bootstrapping” a small business.


Derek D is an actor, comedian, and host with 15 years of experience in the entertainment industry. Before becoming a host on the DNT podcast, Derek was well known in the automotive industry for hosting the award-winning car news show Fast Lane Daily.

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