To say that Mr Nigel Case, owner of London's Classic Car Club, has a weakness for old motors seriously understates the severity of his affliction. Arguably his business is as much a support group as a club, and he admits that rather than curing him of his love for cars, "It's enabled it". Case in point: Mr Case admits to having found the possibility of buying a very plain, 1980s-era Peugeot 205 hatchback (emphatically not a GTI model) irresistible. Not that he's under any illusions about the foibles of old cars, or the demonstrable fact that in every practical sense they are vastly inferior to new ones. He resists the temptation to put any gloss on the subject and freely admits to the many problems that regularly bedevil classic cars. None of this, however, is enough to dispossess him of his affection for cars with soul.
A Ford GT40, one of the most iconic endurance cars
of the 1960s, at Mr Case's Classic Car Club
While it's possible to view him as merely irrational (an assessment with which he'd be the first to agree) we'd rather salute the passion of a man who's only slightly more excited about a beautiful 1967, 5.4L Corvette Sting Ray than he is about a very average 1980s hatchback. Mr Case gives every impression of being genuinely unconcerned with the image of cars in terms of what they say about their owner, but is clearly obsessed with the way they look, the way they sound, and, in some cases, the way the headlights open (see "Buick Riviera clamshell headlights" on YouTube to understand this last point).
It's a passion that we find so laudable that we're suddenly a bit ashamed of our enthusiasm for modern conveniences such as functioning windscreen wipers, effective heating systems and reliable starter motors.
Watch our film, above, for the inside track on Mr Case's enviable car collection.