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  • Writer's pictureBarney

The Workshop week

VW Golf R32 (Mk V)

When we received the blue R32, the instruction from the owner was simple: ‘Inspect, report & make sure I’m still driving it in 20 years’.

Why did the owner buy it? Because it’s the last of the non-turbocharged performance Golfs, and as such is a significant model in the back catalogue: Fast, cool and likely to appreciate in value over time.

So, we rolled up our sleeves and got to work. Rule number one of car preservation: clean the underside & waxoyl all of the body cavities. After a detailed inspection we carried out the following mechanical work: Replaced one snapped rear spring, renewed the rear differential oil seals and replaced the cam cover gaskets.

The cosmetic work included rectifying a small parking scrape on the rear end, fitting a new wiper arm and high-gloss b-pillar on the offside, replacing the undertray, refurbishing the 18” wheels, renewing the centre grill and finally – a new R32 badge.

This enthusiast customer is taking a very long-term view on the ownership of this one, and we hope to be caring for her for many years to come.

BMW M635i/M6 (e27)

We’ve included the Royal Blue M6 in this update as it gives a great example of the kind of services we offer to all of our customers. Her owner is a British ex-pat living in Hong Kong who likes to keep a ‘fun’ vehicle ready for him in the UK. We fully restored the car three years ago, and it’s a permanent fixture in our storage facility. Once a year we rouse her from her trickle-charged slumber & prepare her for duty (generally checking all fluids, tyres, lights etc; in effect a full pre-delivery inspection).

This year we delivered the car to the owner’s London hotel for him to enjoy as he visits family & friends in the UK, we’ll then will pick the car back up the following week when he returns to Hong Kong, she will be fully valeted and returned to our storage facility where she’ll reside until his next visit.

A storage, fettling, delivery and valeting service – all provided with a smile by us. If you’d like to know more, please get in touch.

BMW M3 Convertible (e30)

The party dismantled black M3 in the gallery below was with us to rectify a common problem specific to e30 M3’s that tends to manifest itself in the summer – an unreliable electric cooling fan.

Unusually, these cars don’t have a viscous fan coupling, and rely on an electric fan in front of the radiator. The earliest M3’s have a one-speed affair & so tend to run a little hot, later models were given a two-speeder that improved the situation somewhat. However, the age of the components means two issues are cropping up: The wires leading into the temperature switch on the thermostat or the bottom of the radiator tend to break, or (increasingly as these models are often in collections & not being driven) the electric fan seizes & can break up.

We received a slightly distressed call from the car’s owner saying ‘My M3’s overheating!’. We diagnosed a seized fan at the workshop & as it wasn’t possible to free it, it’s been replaced with a brand new item


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