I guess it is safe to say that life is good!! I write this newsletter from the lanai of a long time Intermeccanica customer and friend, Sandy Lynne, in Kihei, Maui, Hawaii!
Change and more change
It has been too long since my last newsletter and much has happened at and with Intermeccanica in this time. In brief: Intermeccanica moved premises of over 22 years in August of 2013. Man, there was a lot of stuff and even more dust!! Our current location in New Westminster is about 20 minutes east of the old location along our Hwy #1 and is working out fine. (Still working on setup 1½ years later!) For all of you who have visited, I thank you. For those of you who plan to visit, call me if you get lost!
The “new” Intermeccanica premises at the Meccanica Building are coming along very nicely. This space will be a real jewel, thanks to the commitment, great effort and support of Scott Cressey and his whole team on this project. This new building is right down the street from the old shop. Scott has created a new space on the ground floor of a beautiful new, car themed, condo development. This will be the first time ever that the City of Vancouver will allow light industrial and residential spaces to be shared. We will have beautiful show room and production space in one of Vancouver’s trendiest new neighbourhoods. Expected completion of the space is summer/fall 2014. More details on this in coming newsletters.
Innovation drives us
Current Intermeccanica production is running about 50% modern liquid cooled and 50% traditional air cooled. Both of these products are evolving with continual R&D on the liquid cooled, including the development of “hidden” a/c and heating systems for a true “original” interior look. We are also working on a new cooling system layout which, if successful, will offer a bigger fuel tank and improved front trunk space. On the air cooled front, we have worked with CB Performance’s more recent generation of fuel injection systems as well as newly available HD aluminum push rods which are a great addition to a proven platform. Contact me for more details.
We are currently putting the final touches on our 2014 price lists and will have these available soon. We are planning on offering pricing both in our traditional “à la carte” format as well as the newer “factory spec” format. As many of you may have noticed, we have been asked by the US D.O.T. to improve clarity on our website as to the fact that Intermeccanica only sells coaches or rolling chassis versions of our products into the US market. This has always been the case as we have always relied on US side partners for the supply of drive line and final assembly to our US customers. This is not a change, simply a clarification as required by the US D.O.T. If you have any questions about this please feel free to contact me.
Another small change that has taken place is the renaming of our 356 models to Intermeccanica S and Intermeccanica D. Again, this was a voluntary move Intermeccanica has undertaken to clarify any copyright questions that could arise from Volkswagen, the new Porsche parent company.
Intermeccanica is undertaking a couple of special projects at this time as a way of testing the market in related automotive ventures.
First, we have begun the restoration of a 1967 Intermeccanica Italia for a long time Intermeccanica customer and friend, Gerry. This is our first foray into this field. Progress is steady. We are excited for the prospect of soon seeing this Italia with a fresh coat of paint! This is the first real bridge between the Italian and North American Intermeccanica products and I hope the first of a new line of work for Intermeccanica!
Another undertaking is the “backdating” of a Porsche 964 into a 911 ST inspired hot rod for another long time Intermeccanica customer and friend, Mike. This is proving to be lots of fun. We have just received the new body panels so soon we should see some nice progress on this unique project.
If you are interested in further details on either of these projects or have an idea of something you think would be a good match for our skills, please contact me.
Smaller projects in process at the shop now include the restoration of a Typ-82 Kubel, an older Roadster, and the upgrade/repair of a couple of older IM products. If you have been thinking about having some work performed on your Intermeccanica, please contact me. I would be thrilled to discuss this with you.
Our 9th annual Intermeccanica Tour took place this past July 12 to 14. We returned to the familiar surroundings of beautiful Whistler, B.C. for two days, with a wrap up open house at the new Intermeccanica location in New Westminster. I was thrilled to have such great support from long time IM Tour participants and excited to have so many new friends join us for this event.
I am thrilled to announce that this year’s IM Tour will take place August 22nd to 24th, 2014. We will be returning by popular demand to British Columbia’s Okanogan wine country for a fun filled weekend of top notch drives & entertaining with our Intermeccanica friends new and old! Please let Robert in our office know if you are interested as we were close to capacity last year. More details around this great weekend will be available soon.
Carlisle the UK & Europe
To my IM customers and friends on the east coast and mid-west, I want to let you know that I will be back at the Carlisle Import and Specialty Car Show in Carlisle, Pennsylvania May 16 to 18 in conjunction with Michael & David my dealers, Intermeccanica US from Southfield, Michigan. I am already aware of one IM customer making the trek to Carlisle all the way from California! I would love to organize an IM customer dinner for the Friday night, May 16, if there is sufficient interest. Please contact me if you would like to participate in such an event. If you are interested in looking at Intermeccanica’s as well as competitor’s products, and you can make the time to visit Carlisle, you will not be disappointed. If you are coming out please let me know so that we can set up a time to meet.
For all my enthusiastic Intermeccanica friends in the UK and Europe, I am thrilled to let you know that I am working with new partners in the London area to bring Intermeccanica products into the UK and hopefully continental Europe. We are trying to do this in a fashion that will make our Intermeccanica 356’s more competitive in the UK and European markets. The first of these products will be on the water shortly. Please contact me for further information.
I know that for many of you this has been a long and cold winter, the good news is that spring and all the automotive fun that this season brings is only a few weeks away so if you have been thinking that this is your year to build an Intermeccanica please reach out to me or to Michael in Michigan. We can still get you behind the wheel of your custom built Intermeccanica for this season. If you are looking for pre-owned we can assist you in locating the perfect Intermeccanica for you to enjoy! I look forward to hearing from you and would ask that you forward this note to anyone you know who you think might enjoy reading!
Please see the links below for more photos and details.
As summer finally makes its belated appearance in the North West, the excitement at Intermeccanica continues with interesting new projects underway and great new customer relationships being forged. If you have been driving and enjoying your Intermeccanica, there are now new ways to keep in touch (read on) and if you are still dreaming about your Intermeccanica, this is the time to place your order and make sure you do not waste another driving season dreaming instead of driving!
2011 Intermeccanica Wine Country Tour
Our upcoming Wine Country Tour, Sept. 23 - 25 will be based out of the southern Okanagan town of Osoyoos. I have selected the Spirit Ridge Resort http://www.spiritridge.ca as a home base for our tour’s events. We have secured good pricing on some very nice rooms, starting at $139 for a one bedroom suite. The reservations are now open and can be made either by calling the resort directly 1-877-313-9463 or online by following these instructions: go to http://www.spiritridge.ca , select "rate and availability", fill in your dates, then enter promo code "MECCA".
The format for this year's tour is a change from years past. We will not have an IM BBQ component but rather will focus on drives based out of our hotel. We will include visits and tours to several local wineries as well as some memorable meals. This part of British Columbia is a favourite among both motorcycle and sports car enthusiasts for its great roads and light traffic. If you have time we welcome you all to join us. As per usual, this event is about people so you are welcome in whatever vehicle you wish to drive.
Publicity & Publications
Keep an eye on the upcoming November / December copy of Kit Car Builder. This magazine will be featuring a full article on long time Intermeccanica friends and customers Dale and Michele Bates' beautiful new Audi 1.8 Turbo "Maus". This will be the first press coverage of this exciting new model from Intermeccanica.
The Intermeccanica book "The Story of the Prancing Bull" continues to be a popular seller. If you do not yet have your copy we still have signed copies for sale, makes a great gift for your Intermeccanica fan! $85.00 including shipping. Please email Robert to order your copy.
The 2011 show season has been a busy one for me.
We started the year off with the Vancouver International Auto Show where we exhibited our pearl pink automatic transmission 1.8 Turbo Roadster. This Intermeccanica was very popular and was well received by show goers and the press alike!
The East Coast SOC Speedster/Spyder event at Carlisle PA was once again a great event giving me the opportunity to meet with customers and friends both old and new. My Intermeccanica US dealer from Michigan, Bob Schneider, and I had a new location in the replica building. It was a bit harder to find but eventually everybody made their way by to see our exhibit and Roadster on display. If you did not make it or have never been, this is a show not to miss.
The West Coast SOC rain-soaked get together took place in beautiful Pismo Beach California. I had the privilege to attend this event with Intermeccanica friends and customers Dale Bates and Dave Mitchell, driving with them from the Sacramento area. The So Cal Speedster/Spyder guys put on a great event despite the weather and I enjoyed seeing the diverse look of the Speedsters in attendance.
Intermeccanica exhibited at the Mission BC (Vancouver area) as well as Seattle Historic Races. I plan to return to these events next year and maybe attend more as time and budget permits: our 356's had a great reception at these events!
Website & Social Media
I am proud to announce that in the coming weeks we will be launching our newly revised web site. For those of you who visit our site regularly, you will find the look familiar but with better navigation and better image access. For me what is most exciting about the new site is that the new platform will allow me to update the site more easily so you should see improved content flow.
Intermeccanica has joined the 21st century!
• With the help of our local technical institute summer intern, Intermeccanica now has an active Face Book page so if you think of yourself as a friend of Intermeccanica, "friend" us and in exchange I will promise to keep you all current on our projects with photos!
• If you need your Intermeccanica fix more regularly you can follow me on Twitter too! or search @intermeccanica.
• If you have always wanted to see more images of Intermeccanica products and found our site a bit lacking, we have an answer for you, our new Flicker account! We have loaded our current inventory of images from our web site as a start but as we move forward I will be loading in-process and completed project photos so that all of you can follow along as we construct our special projects!
I hope you have a chance to check out these new ways of interfacing with Intermeccanica and please drop me a note if you see things you like and also if you have suggestions on how we can improve what we offer.
Headstart Speedsters and Roadsters
In response to this past spring's marketing study, we have developed Headstart Speedsters and Roadsters. This is a selection of predetermined "package" 356's matching the best combination of mechanical and body options into Speedsters and Roadsters that you will want to own, fully specked out and at a set price point. You will of course have a full selection of exterior and interior colours to choose from, but the all important details that make an Intermeccanica all that it can be have been pre-selected for you, streamlining the order process. This is not to say that we have dropped the option for any of you to truly specify your Intermeccanica down to the fasteners, but now you do not have to: let Intermeccanica help you with this!
This past spring's sales have resulted in a great blend of projects moving through the Intermeccanica shop. We have had the pleasure of building an unusual number of Ultra HP traditional air cooled 356's, including one very special Outlaw/Carrera inspired Speedster featuring a CB Performance 180HP 2332cc. This is an amazing engine with great depth of performance and is a real kick in the pants to drive.
On the liquid cooled side of production we have two very exciting new Subaru powered projects. These build on our experience with the Audi powered liquid cooled projects but with a unique twist. I am very excited to see how these power plants perform and sound in comparison to the in-line 4's that we are familiar with.
Rounding out our current order book I am thrilled to be working once again with an old customer Mike W. for whom we custom built the 911 powered Speedster that was covered by Excellence magazine in 2003. Mike's new project builds on his experience with his Intermeccanica plus a few developments and is sure to be another unique top line Intermeccanica. If your travels bring you to the North West I hope you make time to stop by Intermeccanica for a visit!
If you have spent this driving season thinking about a new Intermeccanica, this is the time to plan for a new 356! Fall is the right time to get together with me so that next spring you will be the first on the road driving a Roadster with timeless style and performance - that you can’t buy off the rack! Please drop me a line at (604) 872-4747 [shop] or (604) 219-2586 [mobile].
If a visit to Vancouver is not possible please contact Bob Schneider at Intermeccanica US Ph: (248) 304-9091, web: Intermeccanica US, and for our Canadian friends outside of BC, contact Ron Leonard at Intermeccanica Canada Ph: (604) 220-4141, web: Intermeccanica Canada.
We are at your disposal and look forward to working with you to turn your 356 and even Kubelwagen dream into reality!
IM Across The Pond
I am thrilled to announce the establishment of Intermeccanica UK headed by Mr. Ian Smith of St. Andrews, Scotland.
Ian has successfully undertaken the task of bringing our liquid cooled Intermeccanica into UK IVA compliance and is now setting up sales and distribution for the UK. Ian will be showing his new Intermeccanica Speedster at several events in the UK. Drop him a line if you are interested in making an Intermeccanica part of your stable! For our numerous continental European fans, I am planning on using the UK beachhead as a starting point for further expansion into Europe. As information becomes available I will keep you posted.
This summer has seen brisk movement in the pre-owned Intermeccanica market with most available Intermeccanica's selling quickly. Whether you are looking for a US or Canadian titled pre-owned, keep an eye on our site or even better drop me a note and let me know what you are looking for. There are some very good Intermeccanica's available and inventory changes every month so if a new IM is not for you right now give a pre-owned serious thought. I am always ready to take one back in on trade when the time is right for you to move to a custom build! If you are looking for a quality pre-owned Intermeccanica or if you are thinking of listing yours for sale please give me a call (604-872-4747) or send me a note at firstname.lastname@example.org.
I hope that 2011 has been a great year for you and your family so far and that if you have been dreaming about an Intermeccanica, you make 2011 the year that you allow me to make your 356 or Kubel dream come true!