Picking up a couple of exotics

Words & Photos by Henry Phull

 

I hadn’t planned on doing much last Saturday, but that all changed rather quickly after I received a call on Friday evening from my friend Nick Sahota (If you frequent the website, you might’ve heard of him. He owns the E30 M3 and E34 540i that we recently featured, along with a large collection of cars). “I’m picking up the Testarossa and Diablo tomorrow, do you want to come with me?”. Well, what would you have done? This did, however, mean a very early start for myself. I left mine at 6:15am, to get to Nicks in Southampton for 7am. The day started, almost catastrophically, with me aquaplaning twice along the A31 because the rain was so bad. Luckily, after doing a maximum of 50mph down the motorway, I made it in one piece to Nicks, where there were two commercial trailers waiting to be hitched up. The tow vehicles of choice were Nick’s X6M (his daily driver) and his friend Dean’s Nissan Navara pickup, with Chris and Steven piloting it. Still dark and pouring with rain, we connected the trailers and hit the road again for a 250-mile drive up to Bradford.

 

 

The weather throughout the drive was still dire, but the X6M made the journey a breeze thanks to the 4wd system, and with every optional extra ticked it was certainly the most comfortable BMW I’ve ever had the pleasure of being a passenger in. It turned out to be an ideal towing vehicle, too… Nick had to keep reminding himself that there was a trailer behind us as it was that unnoticeable. With a breakfast stop and a couple of toilet breaks, we finally made it up north to the luxurious A Kahn Design headquarters, the dealer which Nick purchased the cars from.

 

 

The Bradford branch is one of three Kahn dealerships (the other two in Leeds and London) and the main headquarters, full of some incredibly rare classic supercars including some of Kahn’s personal collection. These are the sort of cars you just don’t see, so walking upstairs into this first-floor showroom took my breath away.

 

 

After half an hour of wandering around and admiring these exotic beauties, we were led downstairs into the workshop, where Nicks new cars were waiting for him. The first car being a 1994 Lamborghini Diablo VT with just 29k on the clock. A Japanese import, the car has some questionable modifications, but fortunately, they’re mostly just badges, LED’s and old-school ICE that will be promptly removed, Nick assures me. The original Lamborghini teledial wheels were sourced too, so these will also be swapped over eventually.

 

 

The second car (because why not buy both, right?) is a Koenig Specials 1989 Ferrari Testarossa, again with a few trinkets (yes, more LEDs) that need removing, but a solid car with just 29k miles on it, like the Lambo. Nick has sourced a set of OZ Futuras to rebuild for the Testarossa which should totally transform it from the BBS wheels currently fitted.

 

 

With the cars checked over, it was time for the fun part… getting them on to the trailers. We were now super-worried that neither of the cars would fit, as they were so much wider than what we’d anticipated, especially the Lamborghini. Typically, Nick hadn’t actually measured anything prior to leaving. This made for an unforgetful experience.

 

Nick eyes-up the trailer

 

The Diablo VT patiently waiting to be loaded up

 

 

The problem we had was that the trailers Nick had brought were far from ideal. One trailer had sides and end poles that could not be removed on site, so it took numerous maneuvers to get the Testarossa onto the trailer properly. None of us really had any idea what we were doing so the whole debacle took some two and a half hours, mostly spent trying to get the Testarossa out of a sticky situation. It had become so late in the day, that we were starting to worry about it getting dark.

 

 

 

Being a Saturday afternoon, 90% of Kahn’s staff had gone home, so we were left with just one very helpful mechanic who went the extra mile to help us out. Getting the Diablo loaded was much easier, considering the other trailer had no protruding sides to get in the way, although it was still a tight fit. We finally managed it, although we’re probably on the internet elsewhere making fools of ourselves… I imagine any videos posted would be titled along the lines of “How not to load a supercar” or similar. In hindsight, it must have looked rather funny to anyone passing by.

 

 

We stopped half a mile down the road in the nearest petrol station to check whether the cars were comfortable on the trailers, and to fuel the tow vehicles for the long road home. All was good, although we took it a lot slower this time. Amazingly, Nick still didn’t even notice he was towing anything, even with a Diablo onboard. If you’re looking for a tow-car, I can’t recommend the X6M enough! By the time we hit the motorway it was already getting dark, which made for an extremely boring, and utterly stressful 5-6 hour drive home. We received plenty of thumbs up and people losing their minds once they spotted the cars though!

 

 

We made it back to Southampton with no issues and stopped to refuel one final time so that the new cars were ready to drive. Unloading the cars back home in near total darkness was also rather interesting, but after the earlier messing around, we were more confident with unloading.

 

 

Being up, close and personal with these cars was an unreal experience. These were the two cars that most of us dreamt of during our childhood. Does anyone else remember driving them on the old Need For Speed games? I never thought I’d be this close to either of them, let alone sit in them. It’s nowhere near the same as experiencing a modern-day supercar, as these two are simply iconic. Congratulations to Nick for finally adding two of his dream cars to the garage. I can’t wait to see him put his touch on them… I’m trying my best to convince him to put one of them on air, so who knows…

 

 

The next day, and with Nick being Nick, the Testarossa got some use straight away!





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