January for so many businesses is quiet and I am told a slightly miserable time of year. Never for us. Thirty years of customer research has clearly shown that us car nuts are ever the optimists. Despite the perpetual heavy rain fall of a month ago and as soon as the Christmas decorations were packed in the loft, the phone started to ring and the emails started rolling in. Already plans were being made for those exciting and sometimes quite challenging events, road trips and adventures to be enjoyed in their cars during 2020.
We are always well booked in the workshop with the more routine type service work. Already this year has seen all sorts of machinery pass through the workshop for preparation for the year ahead. Alpina B10’s, B3’s, BMW M635 CSI, E46 M3’s, M3 CSL, 840 CI Sport, Z3 M Coupe to name but a few, have already had the spanners ran over them.
The first quarter of this year will see some of the more major restorations that have been taking place here during 2019 coming to an end. The full restoration of a Fjord blue City Pack 3.0 CSL is drawing to a close and nearly ready for her first road test. Major structural restoration to an M635 CSI’s sills and floor is nearing completion. The full underside strip to bare metal and restoration of a Porsche 996 C2 is now finished and awaiting her slot in the paint oven for bare metal respray. A full age-related mechanical restoration will be completed next week on a Mercedes 450 SLC ready for the owner to enjoy this Spring with total confidence.
We carried out a major mechanical restoration on a stunning BMW 2500 last year in preparation for supporting this year’s Historic Monte Carlo Rally. Four up with luggage, the car just returned having seen not just spirited driving, but also ice and snow without missing a beat. We look forward to preparing the car this year to the next level enabling her to compete in the 2021 event rather than just as a support vehicle.
Work in January started on two rally car projects. An E30 M3 is nearly ready for some stress testing prior to competing in this year’s Rally Clasico Isla Mallorca. We wish them every success and look forward to hearing about their adventures. This month will see the completion of another rally car project. A rare BMW E30 320IS. This rare car was only produced for the Italian and Portuguese markets to avoid luxury car tax on cars of over two litres. The standard E30 3 series body shell was used and installed with a shorter stroke version of the S14 M3 engine and the Getrag close ratio gearbox. Quite the sheep in wolfs clothing! This car will be entered into numerous events over the next year. Again, we wish them the best of luck.
I hope to get the build of our BMW Group 2 CSL back on track this year. Having just finished a meeting with the painter to sign off the last details of the chosen livery. This project is causing great excitement!
2019 was a quieter year for classic car sales in general. As predicted, the value of average cars was seen to be falling with only the crème de la crème of classics maintaining their values. At Classic Heroes, we have seen a post-election interest in cars for sale and January has already seen sales complete and cars now passing through the workshop for final preparation before being handed over to the lucky new owners.
2020 is looking like a fun year and we hope you can join us for the ride.