How Ireland is affecting one Welsh classic dealer
When did Pembrokeshire Classics Investments start?
About 12 years ago, but I left school at 14 aiming to do something with cars. Forty years on I still get great pleasure from buying and selling.
How do you see the market?
It is changing. I’m based in Pembrokeshire, and as a result we did sell a lot of cars to Ireland. But cars came back when the Irish economy went into recession. Now, with the ratio of the pound to the Euro, we’re selling to Ireland again.
Does being in Pembrokeshire help or hinder sales?
Some people might be put off by our location, but there are those who are happy to pay and then have the car transported to them. We recently sold an Austin A35 to a 79-year-old enthusiast, and had the car transported to him.
Who do you sell to?
Enthusiasts who keep the movement going. When I started out not many classic car dealers were doing a highquality job – I sell cars I don’t ever have to apologise for, which I learnt through selling modern cars. All those I sell have MoT tests, whether they are exempt or not, and every car goes through my workshop.
Do you lean towards sports cars or saloon cars?
It’s the quality of a car that counts for me and you’re likely to find saloons rather than sports cars in that condition. When it comes to sports cars many buyers might prefer to go to a specialist. I’m happier handling saloons, which tend to come to me. BMC Farina saloons, Westminsters and MG Magnettes will generate the phone calls and they will find good homes.
' I'm happier handling saloons'
What’s in demand?
BMC Farina saloons are popular and, unlike MkII Zephyrs and Zodiacs and Vauxhall PA Crestas and Veloxes, tend not have been rock-and-rolled up. I don’t get calls for more unusual cars and I would decline if I was asked to find one. We own the cars we offer.
Are your buyers clued-up?
Most buyers know what they’re after. They can see from our website what we’ve sold and that gives them confidence. I sold a car to a buyer in France who rang me an hour after it was delivered, and said he was smiling.
Richard Hill prefers dealing in saloons, but his recent sales include this 1970 Jaguar E-type.