Thursday 17 July 2014

The land of classic cars by Mercedes and Porsche - Baden-Württemberg

Guest blog by Tomas Blaese, (roughly translated by Chris Thomas)

I don’t think there has been a Mercedes made since 1935 that I have not driven in, even if just as a passenger. You could say that petrol flows in my veins. Because I’m a native of Baden-Württemberg, the federal state in Germany in which the car was invented; where Ferdinand Porsche envisaged the Volkswagen; where great marques such as Mercedes-Benz, Porsche and last but not least Audi have their factories. Not to mention the important suppliers to the automobile industry, such as Bosch, Mahle, Varta and many more.

The region of greater Stuttgart is one of the most important in the world. It is been shaped by the car and its inhabitants are proud of their products. The Industrial Revolution and then the car were catalysts of a rapid development. In 1850 the region was still bitterly poor and the population was subject to the limitations of the state and a state-supporting church. Today, the German ”Mittelstand” stands strong in the region, in Germany and in the world. And that is just as it should be!

Classic cars are my great passion. As a child of the post-war years I experienced a unique period, which of course included cars. We still saw prewar vehicles on the roads, then the ambitiously developed modern cars, which are together the cultural witnesses of the age. American cars were admired - yes they were dream cars. On holiday in other European countries, you also saw other marques. The variety was particularly rich in Switzerland. Your eyes couldn't get enough of the many British makes, the French or the Italian. Making a really good vehicle, whether in style or technology, used to be the pride of every single car producer.

Mercedes is my favourite brand. The product mirrors our inventive industrious mentality so precisely, here in Baden-Württemberg. Every Mercedes, subjected since 1935 to the challenges made by the then new autobahns, is ambitiously developed, thought through, carefully constructed, user-friendly, comfortable, sustainable - according to the current state of the art - and holds its value. It doesn't matter whether you’re driving a 500K from 1935, a 170V from 1949, a 280 SE from 1972 or an S class from 2014, you immediately feel at one with the car. I personally own a 300 TD from 1992. It gives me great pleasure every single day - and I have to say that my passion does not diminish with time. A Mercedes is like a quality tailored suit, you always create a great impression.

Porsche is on cloud nine. And it has much in common with Mercedes: for example, every car has the ability to become an (everyday) classic. Those truly smiled on by Fortune have both marques in their garage. The Mercedes is great for the long tours and special occasions; the Porsche suits the weekend. Ferrari might make fascinating sports cars but Porsche creates perfection.

If you ask after my real interests, then classic cars are my specialty. “Unfortunately” I only became a lawyer and a salesman. Beautifully preserved cars are indeed a multifaceted subject that should not be underestimated. God didn't just create Sunday, he also created the classic car. 

The unique art of restoration can be seen today in the preservation of the patina, something that has developed and matured over the course of human lives. It is no surprise to me, that my son Marc (with his partner Rouven and is brilliant team of experts) is following in the footsteps of his father’s passion ( 

Without doubt, when it comes to the subject of “classic cars”, I happily provide firm  - support to those true enthusiasts and owners of Mercedes and Porsche that are in need of loving restoration.