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Vintage car garage in Westbrook restores classic vehicles from around the world

Customers send their vehicles to Vintage Motorcars in Westbrook from across the country and from all over the world.

WESTBROOK, Conn. — Whitewalls are their wheelhouse; they have been for the past 37 years. Rich Willard, the owner of Vintage Motorcars, began his company in his own backyard and now there is a two-story garage full of classic cars just waiting for restorations.

Customers send their vehicles to Rich and his team from across the country, and, he says, from all over the world.

“It’s beyond just slapping on a quarter panel," Willard said. "It's mechanical, it's autobody, it's upholstery and we have to take it to an artistic level.”

RELATED: Classic car hobby cruising in high gear during pandemic, local experts say

The floor at Vintage Motorcars looks less like an auto shop and more like a museum; everywhere you look there are iconic vehicles getting restored.

Jim Donroe, the VP at Vintage said their work is all about the attention to details. Some projects even take as long as two years to complete.

“Everything has to be addressed, you can’t overlook any aspect of it,” Donroe said.

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Willard said that about two months after the pandemic began, he saw an uptick in business – more people wanted their cars worked on, more were interested in buying a classic car.

“I don’t know if they concentrated more on their hobbies or had more time off but it (business) did increase,” Willard said.

RELATED: Car shortage impacts dealers, consumers in state

He added that his work might be on his customers’ vintage vehicles, but it never gets old: “You have fulfilled dreams for them, and you get a good feeling.”

Willard also said, due to COVID-19, he too is suffering from a worker shortage and is looking to hire auto body experts.

To learn more about Vintage Motorcars and see their picture gallery, click here.

Jimmy Altman is a reporter at FOX61 News. He can be reached at jaltman@fox61.com. Follow him on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.


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