I couldn't find the sports car of my dreams, so I built it myself.
Hi Mathieu, so what is this place ?
Welcome to Easy Cars, located in Reims. I am the business co-owner, along with Hervé. Easy Cars is a business where we buy, sell, maintain, do bodywork, and tune cars. We are specialised inPorsche – by passion, but we work with all sports and high-end vehicles.
As you were telling us, you started with almost nothing: the price of an A4.
I am a « Porsche enthusiast ». But I have another problem, I am obsessed with cars. I wanted them all. However, to have all of them, I had to buy them. One of the best ways to achieve this, I found, was to buy them before selling them off. We began a few years ago, sold one, then two cars, and soon enough the company built itself. Business carried on until we found ourselves needing a more spacious garage in which we could fit around eight cars. Then a second one where we could store about forty cars - to end up running out of space again these days.
Naturally, we also turned to maintenance, as it is quite costly to take care of around forty cars before selling them on. The demand of our customers also pushed us into developing this branch of our business, as such specialists - who can do great things, are quite rare in France.
Then, one of our mechanics asked us :
- What if we were to do a little more than just maintaining the cars ?
- Like what ?
- Like Ben Singer, or RWB !
- Woah ! RWB, that's absolutely sick, I'm a fan of their videos, we can try something here !
So, how is it going ?
We went to see a car getting built - a bit like you are now. Then, we got in contact with the owner of said car because people can't get into the RWB family just like that. He found us serious and frienly enough and led us to meet Akira Nakai (note – More known under the honorary name of Nakai-san) to see if he'd agree to work with us or not.
We met up two, three then four times. We then went to his place. Finally, he asked us how we'd envision the car.
For the first car, we gave him the charateristics we were looking for. We didn't know which color to pick, so he made his choice between the three options we suggested.
Is RWB ran like a family ?
Exactly. That's what I was saying. You don't simply walk into a family. In our case, we went through the owner of RWB UK (HIBIKI) who is also here today. It's him who put in a good word for us at RWB Japan. Sympathizing isn't always easy with the language barrier, but he saw that we were passionate, that we were looking for cars that we'd actually drive. That's indeed the case for our first one, who drove many miles in its first year both on the road and on track. That's exactly the RWB spirit : having your car and enjoying it on the road. At least, that's the spirit that the father wants to pass down to his children.
We share a great deal of things. There's also a legend saying that a car he's built belongs to him. When he travels, the car needs to be made available for him. For exemple, if he were to come on holidays in France, I'd bget a call asking to borrow the car.
So that's the point of having two of them. We are also familiar with the concept of letting family borrow things on our side !
But to be honest, he doesn't really have time to take holidays. This week, he came to Paris for two days – before fitting the kit at our place. No need to use a car, in this case. And the other way around, when we go to visit him, he lets us use his cars with no issues.
Every year, he invites us to The Idlers 12 Hour Race ( Twin Ring Motegi circuit – Japan) and proposes us to take part, or relay with one of the available cars : « Share the cars between yourselves. Do whatever you want »
How did you get to that point ?
Ever since I was little, I fell in love with the 930 Turbo Which is Porche's most legendary car - in my opinion, as well as the 2.7 RS. JI was born in the eighties. Inevitably, that's the car you'd see everywhere with its massive wing in the back, the one you had as a diecast model.
One of my friends bought himself a brand new Boxster back when it came out in the late nineties. He made me discover it and I found it extraordinary. Therefore I bought one as soon as I could. Then everything followed suit. I ended up buying a 911.
Though I haven't been completely faithful, as I've also owned a Ferrari. It's pleasent, but I didn't like it all that much, because it wasn't what I was looking for. The sound is lovely, the whole is legendary because of the Ferrari badge. Regardless, it doesn't have the driving pleasure, or the comfort, nor the passion that you can find in Porsche cars.
Ferrari owners are usually quite pretentious. At Porsche, we always see people either as clients or friends, here, who will spend two days to talk with us. We meet up quite regularly, a bit like Harley clubs. We avoit bothering ourselves with petty stuff. We're all at the same level. It's not a race to see who is gonna have the flashiest ride, but a space for sharing between passionate people.
When it comes to studies, were you destined to open such a garage ?
Not at all. I haven't majored in anything. I began in the nightlife and communication field. For a few years, I was a DJ and radio host. I made a nice living and could afford a Porsche. Later, I directed a radio station. It's in all of this that I found my passion.
And Hervé, my associate, doesn't come from the automotive world at all either. We fell into it. Well, we'll say that I took him down with me. We didn't know each other all that well and he got passionate very quickly when I brought him with me, in fact.
With Porsche, even if we feel like we know them like the back of our hand, we still learn everyday, like little details that we didn't even know about. It's thrilling ! Captivating stories and interesting facts, there's always something to tell about a Porsche !
How do you manage to express, I want my RWB like so ?
I'm someone who's very observative about the things around me, who remembers all the little details I can see left and right. That's exactly the same thing with Porsches. When you see our second one, it's typically that. You can spot several nods to the Porsche universe.
On the first one, the blue is in reference to Porsche's legendary color. It didn't last long, but it remains legendary thanks to the 964RS or the 968 ClubSport. That's also the same blue of the Audi RS2 that Porsche tuned. And Nakai-san chose it as a callback to French racing colors even though I suggested it for the historic value of that paintjob for Porsche. About the interior or the Wheels, we can spend time on so many small details who are all small nods to the brand.
On the new one, the work is taken even deeper. We really wanted to make a model to celebrate seventy years of Porsche and fifty-fifth anniversary of the 911. This week, we're alse celebrating the sixtieth anniversary of the 964. I'm quite insistant about that, because nobody else is talking about it. It's my favorite car, so it's an important detail.
It's also the twentieth anniversary of RWB. For the occasion, we wanted to make an anniversary edition car because it has never been done on the five hundred (approx.) cars built by RWB. Akira Nakai's signature on the headrests is a reference to Porsche's anniversary editions where you could find Ferdinand Porsche's signature there.
We also wahted the wheels that Magnus designed, that really brings back the look of the Fuchs wheels so legendary for Porsches, and the Pepita upholstery that is just as legendary.
It's a car made for enthusiasts, by enthusiasts, with tons of little easter eggs for those who know these cars !
Exactly ! Just like movies. For some, you have to rewatch them ten times to catch every little detail. And even then, ten times isn't always enough.
I had one last question, because I'm quite focused on the clan. When we introduced ourselves to you, my wife said « We are the Barjozoku. We are a group… » And you stopped her by saying « Yeah, yeah, we know you ! ». So, where do you know us from ?
Last year, you showed up at the Gueux racetrack at the same time as us. I don't know if it was by random chance, and you told me earlier that it was. It was cool. At the same time, I thought it was incredible. I told myself « Who are those guys, showing up with cars that are completely banged up for some of them ». And you had your cars signed. I thought : « Fuck ! The dudes are off getting their cars signed ! It's done. It's over. You can see the steering wheels, they're removable, what cars are these even ! »
I also told myself : « Well damn ! These guys are doing their thing. It may not be my type, but the passion is there ! » I understand perfectly that not everyone can afford to drive a Porsche or other high-end cars. But as long as the passion is there, people always get together to share moments together ! The most importnat thing is that you manage to give something to someone : a smile, for example. That's the most beautiful thing in passion.
I was having a discussion about it yesterday, with one of your guys that also builds cars. He seems to be a genius at that sort of thing. That man lives for his passion, and it shows ! I think he's just like Nakai-san. In Japan, Akira Nakai as an associate who finances the whole operation and Nakai-san, he's the genius. Tommorrow, if your guy finds an investor, who developped through social media and he'll have gold in his hands.
I was saying that I came from the world of nightlife. I did that for years and my favorite thing wasn't playing songs I personally liked. On the contrary, I sometimes played music I hated, But when I raised my head I'd see people still dancing and having fun, with a huge smile on their face.
Well, that's the exact same thing I want to create in our Porsches and it's also what I appreciate in groups like yours.
That's what I was talking about when I brought up Ferrari owners, it's only about the money. They buy their car, but thay also buy people. That's something I noticed on track. The dudes show up to do a trackday. They hire a mechanic. They crack open the window : « Tire pressure. » and they leave, no thanks, no nothing. At Porsche, it absolutely doesn't happen like that ! You gan go eat some pizza at some table corner, you don't give a shit ! I can see it here as well, I have a client parked upfront, with a €200,000 Porsche. It doesn't matter to him !
It's partly because of that mentality that we sell less Ferrari, because it's not the mindset, nor the customers we're looking for. Today, we're wearing good jeans, mut we often welcome customers with ripped jeans. We're at home here ! We're kinda looking for that industrial vibe, to make it feel like a man cave. We want people to feel right at home in here because that's just the way we do things. We're working kinda like the american way. I could even come to work wearing flip-flops, if I felt like it.
That's the future. And if tommorrow, I had to do a job I don't like then I'd just stop working. I only ever worked out of passion. Today, I own a successful garage. I make a living out of it, that's a bonus, but that's not the main goal. And if tommorrow it all collapses to the ground, then I'll just keep doing what I love ; Building cars to the best of my ability, bringing smiles everywhere I go. We only live once. I just want to enjoy it as much as possible, with no headaches. I don't want to see cunts all day long at a job I hate.
For exemple, I wouldn't know how to sell a Clio (Although, sometimes, you can make a bigger profit on a Clio than a Porsche) or selling cars to people wearing suits that cost thousands. That's not my thing.
I have tons of projects in mind, and if I had unlimited budget, I'd get everyone to work on them. I saw an S14 with a Pandem kit. Just for the beauty of that kit, even if I lose money on it, I want one. One of my next crazy ideas would be to build a G Wagon. I want to live for passion, without hassle.
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