3 min read

One July Sunday, in between the rain showers LAM member Bob Maurer hosted a visit to his outstanding collection of cars and bikes. Bob did his IAM motorcycle test with LAM in the nineties and has kept up his membership ever since as he wants to continue to support the organisation’s objectives. He originally joined IAM by passing his car test in 1973.

His current collection occupies an industrial unit in Surrey. It comprises:

  • A 1959 Rolls Royce Silver Cloud – the original toolkit looks untouched.
  • A 1965 Jaguar ‘E’ Type Series 1 4.2 in Primrose Yellow and with a specially built 5 speed gearbox.
  • A 1973 Citroen DS Pallas 2.3 EFI in an intriguing shade: Blanc Carrare – it appears white in sunshine and apple green when cloudy!
  • A 1988 Aston Martin Lagonda – yes a four door: you could get Nan and Grandad in the back! These very angular cars are referred to in ‘Astonspeak’ as wedges – hence the number plate F1 WEJ.
  • A 2007 Ferrari F430F1. Guess the colour!

But that’s enough of the cars. Bob also has:

  • A 2005 BMW K1 1200LT – yes the one with an armchair on the back and a mere 3k on the clock. Bob comments: ‘When this bike was launched, main dealers were invited to attend the German launch and ride one back to UK. My dealer friend found that he could set the cruise control, slide back into the comfy rear seat and smoke a cigarette. I don’t suppose this is a technique you teach these days!’
  • A 1953 MV Augusta Pullman – this is an interesting post-war Italian 125cc 2 stroke commuter bike with leg shields and running boards. Bob bought this at auction and has had a job to source its idiosyncratically sized tyres. It was also a challenge to register the bike in UK. The previous owner brought it into UK as an ornament. No paperwork. Getting that sorted was a learning curve! It’s now road legal and running well.
  • A 1969 Vespa Rally 180 - in bright orange but fortunately no ‘Mod’ adornments.
  • And the pièce de resistance: a 1957 Douglas Dragonfly, one of the few 500cc models made, complete with Steib sidecar – attached by a substantial network of struts.

Bob’s fingernails are clean: he believes in buying classic vehicles with the work already done as far as possible. Some of his acquisitions have come with eye-watering bills from previous owners and he has good relationships with a network of marque specialists.

Although the condition of all these vehicles is outstanding they are by no means museum pieces, they’re all regularly used by Bob and his wife – and all the cars have to be able to accommodate his dog. He drives defensively and doesn’t worry about the odd stone chip.

Bob said: ‘My wife and I have always enjoyed bikes and cars; mostly by looking at other people’s treasures. In later life we’ve been lucky to be able to indulge our passion and now it’s a pleasure to share our collection – especially for charity. We belong to ‘Sporting Bears’, a charity that offers dream rides at many events around UK in return for a donation. Drivers pay all their expenses and a subscription which covers the administration costs of the charity so every penny raised goes to the designated charity. So far funds raised exceed £2 million. Some of the car clubs we have joined have designated charities and it has been a pleasure to be a tiny part of supporting Shooting Star Children’s Hospices through one of them.’

John McNally

 


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