— Drive with Passion —
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Katrin Rau, from Touring Garage, shares her passion with us and reveals current and future trends in classic cars.

W e would like to follow up on our previous issue of Legends Magazine, which was dedicated to women.
This time the magazine invites you to meet an equally interesting woman who continues the family business with great success. Katrin Rau runs the Touring Garage company based in Oberweningen in the Zurich hinterland. Touring Garage is one of the most important classic car garages in Switzerland and its history dates back to 1977, the year it was founded. In 2011, the daughter took over the company from her father Peter Rau and managed the sales and the internal workshop, together with the experienced mechanic Mario Niffeler and the third person of the group Yvonne Marchesi, who took care of administration and sales.

Collector cars, whether youngtimer or oldtimer, are closely linked to fascination and passion.
Ms. Rau has that enthusiasm and it is wonderful to speak to her about it.

LEGENDS MAGAZINE: Grüezi Ms. Rau, thanks for giving us the time for this conversation, how is the Touring Garage doing?

KATRIN RAU: We are doing very well. We are very satisfied with the commercial results of this year and we have weathered the “Corona crisis” well. We are happy to see that vintage vehicles are still in high demand. As we have a very wide and varied range, we can always rely on a segment of the market. In our extensive exhibition, you will find a Topolino or an old Beetle as well as Porsches, Aston Martins and Ferraris. The assortment generally includes 50 to 70 vehicles. You can find new vintage cars there almost every day. Our clients, of all ages, are therefore also very diverse and are spread over a large geographic area.

LEGENDS MAGAZINE: Mrs. Rau, who says vintage car, says she has a very particular passion for the automobile. What is your best moment in such a car?

KATRIN RAU: For me, the best part about a vintage car is when you drive it through the countryside. A classic car has its place on the road – that’s what I think. We find the classic sound of the engine, we are again very close to the mechanics and the driving experience is great. We also decelerate automatically and enjoy the driving and the scenery. Of course, maintenance is also a part of it and personally I am always fascinated by the stories behind such a car.

LEGENDS MAGAZINE: Mrs. Rau, who says vintage car, says she has a very particular passion for the automobile. What is your best moment in such a car?

KATRIN RAU: This car has been in our family for over 15 years. About 2 years ago, I was able to get it back from my father. So we have already done a lot of great trips and rallies with this 356. This car always reminds me of my father. He has since bought another roadster, but a BT6. This car was restored, baring the chassis, many years ago and is still in excellent condition today. Its shape, its simple mechanics and its reliability make it an ideal product for me. Quite simply a great classic.

LEGENDS MAGAZINE: Let’s talk about the future of the classic car. What is the current development of youngtimers and oldtimers and who are the current and future customers?

KATRIN RAU: We’re in the midst of a generational change and it shows. The older generation tends to decrease and this leads to a stronger arrival of these vehicles on the market. Vehicles from the 1940s, for example, are extremely difficult to sell because there are fewer and fewer customers as they go missing (they die or can’t take care of them anymore). This will be less the case for special vehicles, for example iconic vehicles. But with four-door sedans, for example, it becomes more and more difficult. Instead, the younger generation is suddenly buying cars from the 1980s, or even the early 1990s. For the older generation, these are not classic cars, but for the “new” clientele, they are.

LEGENDS MAGAZINE: What do you think of the transformation of classic cars into electric vehicles?

KATRIN RAU: Right now it doesn’t mean anything to me. Too many emotions would be lost. I need the sound of the engine and also the smell of gasoline and oil. It’s all part of the very definition of a classic car. But it’s completely understandable that some people are already converting their vintage cars to electric cars. We will likely see more such cases in the future.

LEGENDS MAGAZINE: Which car do you recommend for a youngtimer enthusiast and which for a classic oldtimer enthusiast?

KATRIN RAU: First of all, we clarify the needs of the customer. For example: two or four seats, convertible or closed, manual or automatic, etc. and then we can advise him exactly on his needs. The budget also plays a role. It is very important that everyone buys a car according to their needs. You should feel comfortable and safe, only then can you drive your car. Having a vintage car at home, in the garage, is less fun.

LEGENDS MAGAZINE: Finally, since classic car demonstrations have resumed, what is the event that you enjoy the most?

KATRIN RAU: For me it’s obvious: the classic demonstrations reach their peak when the vehicles are in action. Therefore, these are the rallies that interest me the most. Of course, exhibitions are also important for Touring Garage, as they allow us to connect with new customers and meet many people from the industry. At the end of October, we will be present at the antique car and spare parts market in St. Gallen. And from November 4, Touring Garage will also be present at the Zurich Classic Car Show.

“A classic car has its place on the road. »KATRIN RAU

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