It was back earlier this year when motoring journalist Andrew Noakes from Classic Cars magazine contacted me asking if i could bring the 6.3 along to the Longcross film studios in Surrey for a photo shoot and drive around the test track in July. The magazine article was featuring high performance saloon cars from the 1960’s onwards and was titled ‘Power to the People’. Mark from the Mercedes Benz owners club had been approached by Andrew and suggested that Classic Cars magazine contact me to arrange a meet up to photograph my 1971 6.3. I took Rachel Persaud from RP Automotive Photography along with me to take some images of the day.
It was a bright day in July when we took the classic Mercedes to Longcross. This was once an MOD base for mainly tracked vehicle testing and is all on a very large site. When we arrived we soon noticed that everyone there was friendly, helpful, and very down to earth about how their cars had been restored. The magazine photographer was also very friendly and helpful.
The test track was a large track, although the speed was limited. I have been involved with panning images before where i have driven the car so that the car in front can take images from a short distance…. but it was harder this time as i had to keep a speed of about 30/ 35mph while only a very short distance from the car and photographer in the front lead car. Rachel sat in the front of the lead car and took this very good image below.
I did get a chance to test the huge acceleration on the car, which was good, it reminded me of what Donovans tour manager and chauffeur Stewart once said to me. In that he used to drive Donovan from his home on the Wentworth estate in Berkshire up to the Hard Rock Cafe in London, often giving the engine a good workout!, as so many 6.3 drivers did when they first owned the car.
I believe that a car is for using. Since the 2008 credit crunch many classic cars are being restored far beyond what was expected from the factory (especially paintwork) which in turn is not original. They are just stored as an investment. Yes of course they will look fantastic, as they have had vast sums of money spent on them and….. they are not being used. This to me this is not really owning a classic car but more storing of an investment, or future museum piece.
We were all there most of the day before hitting the road back home to suffer the heavy traffic on the road, all in all a good day out with good friendly organisation from Andrew Noakes, and a good run out for this London wedding car.