Mike Atwal – Classic Car Club London turned me into a petrol head!


mike-atwallIn year 2007 I rolled into Classic Car Club London in my 1998 Ford Focus 1.6 LX for the first time to try and ace the most important job interview I have ever had…

A private members club, established since 1995 takes care of a fleet of stunning classic cars, giving clients the joy of driving their dream cars without any of the hassles and costs. Surrounded by Jaguar E Types, a Ferrari 308 and Ford Mustang convertible to name a few I walked in awe through the garage into the office for my meeting.

Was I really worthy of working here, having rocked up in a Focus?

Somehow, I fell on my feet and before I knew it, Nigel, the owner of CCC chucked me the keys to a beautiful series three E Type V12 drop head – “Could you take her out and fill her up please?”

I had to get this straight in my head…this was my new job, repeat, job – a routine we are obliged to sign up to so we can earn money to do nice things. And I was doing something nice and getting paid for it. I had better not mess up then?

Fast forward fifteen minutes. I am still in the garage, sat in the mighty V12. It is not that I did not want to crack on driving away, but firmly part of the Playstation Generation I had never seen a manual immobiliser before, aren’t they all supposed to have buttons that operate the central locking? And as for a choke, isn’t that what usually happens to me when I am a bit drunk and try and put far too many chips in my mouth at once?

Fast forward eight and a half years, having ridden a wave of intense classic car antics on a daily basis I am fortunate to have first hand experience of over one hundred exotic cars. I lived with these cars, it was just like having a big garage full of toys and the hardest decision each day was which one to play with. The club was home, always will be, after all, I grew up with it.

And now, as a motoring journalist here at Trade Classics, and having made a huge decision to fly the nest at CCC to chase the sunshine in Europe, the next chapter begins. Over the course of the forth coming months I will be sharing the fond memories set firmly in my mind of each car I was privileged to drive – so stayed tuned folks, I will be kicking off with the car that stole my heart, only 500 of which were ever made.

In fact, anyone care to take a guess at the car in question?

Why not send your suggestions by leaving a comment below.

Mike


Mike Atwall
MIKE ATWALL
This article was written and published by Mike Atwall. Mike works for Trade Classics as an in-house journalist and copywriter and has many years’ experience in the classic car sector – for over 8 years he was the General Manager of the Classic Car Club in London and responsible for a fleet of over 100 cars worth multi-million pounds. So there’s not much Mike doesn’t know about makes, models, maintenance and idiosyncrasies of these old cars. Mike’s a true petrol head with a deep passion for the classics and he loves to talk cars all day, so why not write a reply on this article below.
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