For five years now, I have driven over 18,000 km in a precious Mercedes-Benz 300 SL Gull Wing 1955 across Europe. This car is a historically truly unique ride. I have also participated in many historical events including regularity rallies and “Concours d’Elegance”.
To fully understand such a large but also niche market, one has to ask certain questions:
1.What are my tastes and expectations?
2.What kind of valuable car collection would I like to develop?
3.Would I enjoy participating in some attractive and valuable events such as the Mille Miglia, the Concorso Villa d’Este, the Goodwood Festival of Speed, Pebble Beach, Le Mans Classic? These events congregate the most exceptional automobiles, and attendance is part of the rituals of the most distinguished classic car collectors in the world.
4.What are the cars eligible to such events?
THGG & Co Tips and Advice
During our own acquisitions and restorations, which included more than 20 cases, we have been faced with various problems that can become financial and operational unpleasant surprises. So, over the years, we have developed a strategy and now have the knowledge how to prevent these issues from happening to prestigious clients.
The buyer may run the risk of impulsively choosing a ‘bad’ car – car not really checked at an auction – or overpaying an excessive intermediation chain. How to make the right car selection? How to prioritize between different key criteria like make, model, period, engine nobleness, body design and designer, “one of a kind”, famous history, matching numbers and/or colours, original, restored, to be restored?
2.“Is This Car A True Rarity?”
Sometimes, the seller wants us to believe that there are only a few models on the market, but he “forgets” to say that he talks about the national market as opposed to the international market.
3.Import and Registration
Buyers do face other issues also. For example, where and how to source the selected car? And how to deal with the custom issues if the car has to be imported? Should they register it immediately, and in which country?
The seller does not really know the car history and/or does not check the main car components numbers: chassis, body, engine and gearbox. He may also say it has no corrosion whereas it has never been restored. This may be true visually and the coat thickness gauge may not be able to detect it, but a car that is over 30 years old often has corrosion except for exceptional conservation measures. In either case, how can the buyer be fully reassured about the authenticity, traceability, originality, restoration quality as well as all technical, tax and legal issues? and, last but no less, actual value and future value?
The seller wants to sell a 'perfect' vehicle (condition 1) whereas it would require a restoration of 1,500 to 3,500 hours. The price of the acquisition is not the good one. What really does mean “condition”? Should I invest in a car to be restored, fully or partially? If yes, how and where to make it restored? How long does it take? Is this a valuable stage?
“The more valuable is the car, the more tactful this process is to manage – I personally and carefully oversee”. - Thierry GARCÍA GUILLOREL, Owner. Founder.
Should we restore or preserve a car?
I often get this question from my clients and friends.
First of all, restoration is not mandatory: some classic cars should be preserved as they stand, because of their intrinsic qualities and state, and be carefully preserved.
The restoration of a classic car should be as conservative as possible, as one can do for a master painting or an exceptional piece of furniture belonging, for example, to the “Château de Versailles”. It is also a responsible way to preserve and transmit a legacy that only belongs to us for a while, just like a beautiful Patek Philippe complications watch.
In the spring of 2013, we started the full restoration of a 1957 Mercedes-Benz 300 SL Roadster. Global process took 2 years and included:
•finding the right car,
•choosing the right restoration house,
•rebuilding the full history car,
•settling the administrative issues,
•looking for unique parts,
•looking after the smallest and simplest details,
•creating a unique model with a rare and luxurious option consistent with its history, etc.
We showed the result at Rétromobile in Paris and also at a “Concours d'Elegance” in Madrid. Our video above shows the very difficult but very rewarding journey.
Thierry GARCÍA GUILLOREL, Founding Partner of THGG & Co. THGG & Co covers the USA, Europe and Australia, with local agents, thus addressing classis car restauration with professionalism along each of the value-added chain stages.
Develop & Enjoy Classic Cars
THGG & CO. BUSINESS SUCCESS BORN FROM TRUE LOVE FOR CLASSIC CARS
An alternative investment solution based on a tailored and trusted service offering
For six years now, we have been collecting exclusive, enticing, and the most desirable rare cars across the globe. We have been taking care of them through a special effort process with a partial or a full and valuable restoration practice. This has helped us to assemble an evolutive portfolio of absolute Classic Cars as well as to build Our Classic Car Legacy. We have the passion, and of course we have been enjoying our cars fully.
My passion for rare and different classic cars comes from my grandfather, who fortunately managed to bring a few Italian cars across to Spain when import of cars to Spain was a very difficult process back in the 1950s. He gave me my first ‘car education’, which created a lifelong dream inside me.
Back in the late 60s as a child during our holidays in Marbella, I saw a Mercedes-Benz Pagoda SL as well as a Jaguar E-Type FHC for the first time. Very rare cars in Spain. Later in the 70s, I developed my own taste in Madrid. I saw the “nec plus ultra” Spanish car ever built, a Pegaso Z-102. Later, in the early 80s, after getting my driving license, my grandfather gifted me with one of his amazing cars, a very sporty Lancia. Then an Alfa Romeo GTV 2.5 coupe would follow. My passion was growing, and my interest was expanding in all areas of rare classic cars.