It’s been a touch quiet on the ‘Project 4 Banger’ front over the past couple of months. What with work commitments, a burning desire to spend time with my family and the imminent arrival of the anti-social time of year we like to call Summer, the project just slowed down. That, plus the inability to find companies within the UAE which fitted the bill for the final stretch was proving to be a project stopper.
We had been exceedingly fortuitous when David Tyrell and Carthic from X-Service in Dubai stepped up to project manage the strip and re-paint, but finding someone that could help with the interior was always going to be tough. We needed a company that most importantly understood the word ‘budget’, yet also believed in delivering quality at a budget. Less we forget, this is a 912 and not a 911, so the inherent value is not strong enough to warrant a mega money build.
So when good friend Laurie Bridger and I got talking about a Dubai based company called AutoArt, I just had to take a look with my own eyes. Most people in and around Dubai wouldn’t know the company specifically, though the cars they build are a different matter. More on that subject very soon.
Over and above the cars that have appeared out of their shop, you can’t help but be impressed by their fastidious facility, trim shop and paint area. A true rarity in this part of the world and an aspect that had me sold at the door.
So, after numerous meetings, chats and internet searches, the look and feel of the final product was buttoned down. The plan was to follow the line of mild outlaw (hot rod vibe) yet keep as much of the factory touches as we could. The materials, colours and even patterns on the leather were all chosen after hours of mulling, touching and feeling. Job done then and time to get rocking!
First up, the steering wheel. The standard 912 wheel is a big old beast (think Stirling Moss and big elbows when driving) and part of the feel of the car I never wanted to loose (even though an old school race wheel would have been nice). However over the past ten years of owning the car, I’d always hankered for the look and feel of the Porsche 914/6 steering wheel. So the call was made: the wheel was going to be trimmed. The guys ensured the thickness of padding was just right and the black leather that matches the rest of the car will be fitted by the next post.
Dash top, dash bottom, door tops, b-pillar trim etc etc all freshly covered and ready to fit.
Amazingly for such a tiny little car, the rear seats have always been very usable. I can still remember being four up in the car with friends in the UK, heading to car shows. However, now that kids are in my life, removing them was never going to be on the agenda.
The final head ache is the under bonnet area. Do we go simple with no carpet, simple with a bit of carpet or a full trim job?
Hmmm… back to the thinking desk methinks >>>