We took a trip to the infamous Porsche specialists Paul Stephens, based in Halstead, Essex, for a look around its current stock and to have a chat with the man behind the name.
For those that don't know, what does Paul Stephens do?
We (Paul Stephens) are one of the leading independent Porsche specialists in the UK. Despite being based in Halstead, Essex, you wouldn't believe the number of international clients we have. I would put this down to our customer service, we pride ourselves on that and our sheer knowledge of the Porsche brand and its range of cars. We have a very broad client base, both in the UK and across the world. There is always a huge demand for the likes of air-cooled Porsche 911 models, as well the more-recent GT2, GT3 and RS models, these are the cars we are always on the hunt for.
Is it just Porsches you deal with?
I first learned to drive a car when I was six, and (believe it or not) I was just nine when I got behind the wheel of my first Porsche 911. I took it up to over 100mph on a disused airfield base. Still one of my fondest memories of being a kid, and it's safe to say my love of cars and Porsche began on that very day. I owned my first 911 when I was 21, which was a scruffy 2.4-litre E, that cost me just £3,750. I bought this as I couldn't afford a 911SC at the time. As you may know, times have changed and ironically you could have two for the price of a 911E today! I started my business in 1994, initially specialising in buying and selling different types of sports cars, but the focus soon turned to just Porsche. Some cars are prettier and some cars are faster, but there really isn't another sports car that ticks so many boxes as a 911 does. They have amazing reliability, they come with surprisingly low running costs, given their performance capabilities, and their strong resale values make a nice example an enjoyable car to own and a car we like to have back for resale.
In 2005, we launched our own brand PS Autoart creating bespoke 911s, with a classic style, combined with modern features and performance. 12 years on, we are just launching our Series 2 collection which takes the concept to a new level.
How do you prep your cars for collection?
We prep all of our sales cars and service cars to the same standard. Each car gets the same treatment, the detailing process starts with the initial wash, using products such as Auto Finesse Lather, Auto Finesse Citrus Power and the newly released product from AF, which we love, by the way, Aqua Coat. Following the paintwork receiving a thorough clean, the final finish takes place using products such as AF Tripple3 polish, AF Drizzle, AF Ultra glaze and the Radiance polish. Our project cars that have been specifically built and tailored to a customer's requirements to get a little extra attention, with the use of hard wax.
Favourite AF products? To choose just one, Glisten is great. It's very simple to use and has really impressed us.