David Golding, Classic and Vintage
When did your business start?
I’ve been selling cars since 1998, but have been concentrating on classics since 2012.
How did you do last year? And how has this year fared so far?
Last year was reasonable but the perfect storm of 2015 had gone. This year, I can’t seem to buy anything, despite the currency exchange working in my favour. I’ve only bought two cars and we’re now in April.
Do you sell to enthusiasts or to investors?
At my price level I’m not selling to investors, although there are some very expensive cars coming into Ireland. But just half a dozen or so people are buying these cars.
Are buyers better informed?
Would-be buyers are certainly cluedup when it comes to prices.
‘Collectors have sold up. There’s nothing left’
Are you seeing an increase in demand for modern classics, or is it more traditional models?
Ireland is very strong on Fords, and Escorts in particular, which, even when they’re wrecks, will always make silly money. What I’d see as ‘new old cars’, and especially Japanese ones, are popular: Toyota Starlets and Nissan Micras appeal because of their lower prices. Japanese performance cars are popular, but these tend to be modified, and rear-wheel drive twin-cam Corollas make very strong money. Morris Minors, MGs, Fiats and VW Beetles – all assembled in Ireland because of import duties – are also popular. Some collectors here seek out the Irish-built cars, even though they were not always as well built. Some American cars were assembled in Ireland in the 1950s, too.
Are the more exotic classics maintained in Ireland or do they come to the UK for work?
It’s certainly not a problem having an exotic looked after here, but it’s definitely more difficult to have a car restored professiionally in Ireland.
How difficult is it to find good cars these days?
It’s becoming hard to find even those needing a slight amount of work to make them roadworthy. I wonder where dealers get their stock from as many collectors here have sold their cars and have nothing left. There’s an increasing number of people who have become part-time dealers, too.
The market is changing in Ireland and even Jaguar XKs are becoming increasingly hard to find.