НАША ИСТОРИЯ

ELEGANCE CAR: История трех поколений.
“Автомобильный звездный час“

Все началось с рождения Жоржа Лефевра в июне 1900 года. Увлеченный механикой и прекрасными американскими автомобилями с самого детства, Жорж открыл свой собственный гараж в 1924 году и стал одним из первых дилеров General Motors в Бельгии. Так, будучи официальным дистрибьютором брендов Opel, Buick, Chevrolet и Cadillac, «Гараж Лефевра» стал успешным.

“Спа-Франкошам“

В 1950 году, на волне блестящих исследований, его сын Луи Лефевр стал его преемником. Обладая всепоглощающей страстью к автоспорту, Луи участвовал в соревнованиях в 1953 году и в том же году выиграл свою первую гонку за рулем Opel Kapitan на легендарной трассе СпаФранкошам.

В 1955 году, на автомобильной выставке в Париже, Луи заинтересовали немецкие автомобили Borgward, и в том же году он получил статус дилера этой торговой марки. Помимо своей работы, он продолжал участвовать в гонках и выиграл Чемпионат по подъему на холм по трассе дорожного типа в 1957 году, который проходил в Бельгии, за рулем Borgward Isabella. Он также одержал несколько побед touring car «Grand Prix» , опередив своих потенциальных соперников - Lucien Bianchi, Fritz Jüttner и Bill Blydenstein . Опираясь на репутацию выдающегося водителя и механика, «Гараж Лефевра» завоевал почитателей международного уровня.

“Третье поколение“

В 1982 году родился Фредерик Лефевр. Он изучал сферу торговли автомобилями в очень юном возрасте со своим отцом, которого считали «волшебником автомобильного дела». Впитав всю семейную страсть к автомобилям, Фредерик унаследовал богатый опыт в сфере механики, работ с кузовом и торговли автомобилями. Несмотря на страстную любовь к ремеслу, Фредерик заметил, что среда механики, в которой он рос, претерпела значительные технологические изменения с появлением электроники. Автомобильное ремесло утратило свою индивидуальность, что, в свою очередь, заставило Фредерика «отступить от дела» и начать осуществлять еще одну свою мечту - путешествовать.

В 2009 году он провел 12 месяцев в путешествии по американскому континенту, отправившись в путь длинною в двадцать тысяч километров. Это путешествие вдохновило его и подтолкнуло к рождению Elegance Car.

По возвращению во Францию, друг и давний клиент выразил свое разочарование в качестве обслуживания при покупке автомобиля.Он чувствовал себя так, будто и он - просто номер в списке ожидания на покупку модели с точным набором характеристик. Клиент желал, чтобы машина «походила» на него самого, соответствовала натуре эстета, любителя, а не потребителя! Фредерик был обеспокоен. Он тщательно изучил европейский рынок, и, таким образом, начал выбирать лучших поставщиков, чтобы иметьвозможность как можно быстрее реагировать на самые требовательные ожидания клиентов.

ELEGANCE CAR: Everything starts with a Cadillac 49
"From an American journey to the birth of Elegance Car"

After four months at the University of Vancouver to improve his English, Frederic travelled across Canada and arrived 4800 km away in Brockville, a small town in Ontario on the St. Lawrence River where he met his old Quebec friend Rejean, an epicurean who introduced him to the Thousand Islands region on his boat and spoke about his dream of owning a Cadillac Coupe Deville 49! Frederic realized that Rejean was talking about a rare model that his grandfather Georges had had and which was the pride of the Garage Lefevre. That coincidence gave him a new idea.

"My friend has a dream about Cadillac, I want to achieve it for him"

From Quebec to Mexico via Detroit, New York and the famous "Route 66" Frederic stopped at the most unusual garages and most extravagant dealers and encountered fans like himself where all models were subject to discussions, including the famous Cadillac 49. As a hunter of rare models, Frederic made friends and contacted collectors, owners and organizers of classic car rallies across the country who provided him with many ideas but ultimately no success in finding the specific model.

After 3 months in Mexico to learn Spanish, Frederic took the road up to the north towards the last frontier of the United States: Alaska. On the Californian roads through Los Angeles and San Francisco, he saw some Cadillacs which had suffered because of time and which were ready to end up in the Texas cemetery of the Cadillac Ranch. A thousand miles away, he arrived in Astoria, a small town in Oregon that looked like one of the most remote places on earth. He stayed in the most unique B & B of the region, at Clementine’s, who mentioned a small car museum amongst the local attractions. He went there and found a place where time had stopped. A tiny museum of just fifteen cars full of history amongst which was nothing less than the old 1924 Charlie Chaplin Packard! Frederic opened a conversation with another visitor called Josh who was the only other person present and who coincidentally turned out to be a big fan of classic cars.<:p>

The two men got along well and decided to go for a beer. Frederic shared his adventures and talked about the Cadillac 49… Josh was astonished, saying:

  • I know this model! A friend of mine in Seattle has one. “A convertible”

Frederic’s heart missed a beat... Surprised and excited by the story of this passionate traveler, Josh called his friend Bob and an appointment was made.

“Seattle“

Frederic discovered Seattle, starting with the legendary Public Market before his appointment with Bob at the Whisky Bar. Bob was a very nice guy with whom he discussed classic cars restored in his family workshop, including a unique American model of a 1939 Studebaker Commander convertible that evoked the dream of his friend Rejean. Then Bob told him the story of his Cadillac and invited him to discover it by adding:

  • I’ll like to show it to you, but not to sell it...
  • Thanks Bob, I appreciate it, “replied Frederic with a smile” but let me tell you that a Cadillac convertible like yours is not made for a region like Seattle where it rains more than 200 days per year. Personally I think that she would be better in Ontario not far from her hometown: Detroit.

Arriving at a beautiful property Bob opened the door of the garage to proudly reveal the Cadillac,

  • This is my Baby!

Frederic couldn’t resist his instinct to inspect it: Sound Body, healthy engine, the venerable lady was in superb condition. With a small ignition timing set and a change from 6 to 12 volts it would be perfect. Frederic decided then to share this wonderful moment with Rejean and called him,

  • Guess where I am? “Says Frederic“ I’m sitting in “your” 1949 Cadillac Coupe Deville with Bob its proud owner.
  • Are you kidding? I must have it!
  • Don’t get carried away! Bob has not decided to sell it yet, but he told me he would be happy to meet a bon vivant like you, an amateur of Cadillac’s, cigars and whisky... I’ll pass him on to you !

The two men got on very well on the phone and invited each other to meet when Rejean quipped:

  • I'll tell you Bob, it's been two years since my wife nagged me to take some vacation near Seattle on Vancouver Island. What would you say if I asked her to pack immediately?

Frederic continued his journey towards the north with the certainty that the two men will meet and find a way. It is just a matter of time.

From Alaska to France

Frederic joined a friend in Alaska aboard his sailboat. From Skagway to Vancouver Island via the ancient Russian capital of Sitka, he enjoyed it immensely before returning to Europe.
A few months after his arrival in France, Frederic received a call, it was Rejean.

  • Frederic! Guess where I am?
  • In Seattle I suppose! With Bob?
  • How did you guess? She is sublime ... I’ll pass you onto Bob, he'll tell you!

Bob agreed,

  • Frederic! And yes you were right, the Cadillac will be better in Ontario, at the home of my new friend Rejean!

Frederic had created his method: a good relationship, a bit of patience and instinct. But he still had to find the name of his company which became...

ELEGANCE CAR
 
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