A chance for our Approved Partners to share more about who they are, what they do, and what makes them stand out. This week we caught up with William I’anson.
Who is William I’Anson Ltd?
Since setting up the company 8 years ago we have continued to grow in the direction very much led by our combined passion for motor racing and the increasingly active world which surrounds it, whether that be Grand Prix Bugatti, Formula 1, sports racing or rally. Having recently moved into our new show rooms and storage facility deep in the heart of the Cotswold’s Ben, Nikki, Alec and myself continue to strive to provide the best service possible whether it be selling, buying, storing or managing collections.
There is a deep routed love of motorsport among the team here, both historically and in our current pursuits. Ben, Alec and myself all grew up with a motorsport background. My father was one of the leading restorers on Grand Prix Bugatti and I spent my childhood at one race circuit or another.
Who buys cars from William I’Anson Ltd. and why?
We are lucky in that we have a strong following of clients from around the globe. The joy of selling the cars we do, is that they tend to go to people who are excited about using them. That is what these cars are meant for after all.
Why buy from us? – Firstly, I would hope because we have that special car you want. We are passionate about the cars that we work with. This is very important, to get the best results you’ve got to believe and enthuse in the cars you are selling.
Secondly, and most importantly, we work in a very straightforward and open way, we have the trust of a long-standing client base and I like to think we have a strong reputation as such. This is very important to me.
We also go to great lengths to research and present the history of all of the cars. We are endlessly striving to improve and push the boundaries of how we do this. This is what you are paying for.
Finally, we put our ‘money where our mouth is’ so as to speak – we go racing. Ben is currently leading the Historic Formula Ford Championship and is racing with the HGPCA and at Goodwood. I am still very keen on my racing and I am becoming more and more interested in competitive rallying with events like the Modena Centro Ore.
So which classic car should I buy?
My advice is that you should always buy the one you want to use. I spend a lot of time talking to people about what they want, what do they want to achieve with their racing, do they want a single-seater, or do they want a race car they can still be able to drive it to the pub? The question always has to be ‘do I want it, and does it excite me?’
I think you should always buy a car that you want and are excited about, whether that be road or race. If you are excited about it, then you can be sure someone else will down the line. Furthermore, whatever happens to the market over the years it should continue to make you smile. Thankfully the market continues to back that emotional attachment up with satiability of value on an investment front.
What has changed during your time with William I’Anson ltd
I think the biggest change we have seen has been the increasing breadth of opportunity to use the cars. There is so much more you can do with these cars over the last 20 years, Goodwood, Le Mans Classic, Road Rallies and the rise of Concours. The increased availability of great events and track days has had a very positive effect on the area of the market we specialise in.
There is a growing acceptance of moving one’s collection around. That every purchase does not have to be the ‘one big purchase’ forever. It can be, or you can run a car for a couple of seasons and then try something else – the possibilities are endless.
We are also seeing a decline in the number of cars sold purely for investment. Yes, they are very good investments, but the cars we sell are also out there being used. With racing cars, you’ve got to have the passion. If you’re buying a ‘70s or ‘80s F1 car you are going to want to get out there and race it. It is good to see the enthusiast and passionate ‘car guy’ back in the driving seat.
Of the cars you’ve sold in the last few years, which one do you wish was sitting behind your garage door?
I like all of the cars we have had the opportunity to sell. That is why we have them here. The same goes with cars I have owned myself, I have loved using and owning all of them, but I have no regrets in selling any of them. Selling them has allowed me to experience new cars and adventures and that is very much part of the passion for me.
Can I single one out? The very original Ex-Works, twice Le Mans, 1968 Alpine A220 we have recently sold is a car I would very much loved to have had in my collection. The same goes for the 1955 D Type Jaguar we sold and many of the Grand Prix Bugatti. There is always a place in my heart for Bugatti.