Guest contributor: Becki Chernoff and JG Francis of Mercedes Motoring
We wanted to do a feature on Mercedes Motoring because 1) their photos are awesome, 2) the cars are awesome (is there anything more bulletproof than an old Merc that’s been properly maintained?), and 3) their story is compelling (young guys sniffing out barnyard finds and lovingly restoring them like Old World master craftsmen- an enviable livelihood). As you will see, the results speak for themselves, and are obviously a labor of love. Without further ado, here’s Becki Chernoff for Mercedes Motoring.
JG Francis of Mercedes Motoring is my friend, mentor, and oh yeah, my boss. Sometimes while flipping through his Flickr I have to remind myself that I’m not looking at a brochure for classic Mercedes-Benz diesels. As an avid auto enthusiast, I’ll tell you up front— Mercedes-Benz was not my first love. I am a mechanical engineer living in the Motor City and I was raised on American steel. That said, since I began working for JG I have come to greatly appreciate the particular era of M-B diesels he restores, and agree that they are undeniably some of the best cars ever made.
I’ve met plenty of passionate people in my time (many of them car enthusiasts), but I’ve never met anyone who was as committed to giving his customers the finest original condition classic cars as JG. He is continually refining his restoration process to deliver even better cars, but he isn’t doing it just to satisfy customers; he’s doing it because he loves it, he thrives on it, and quite frankly, because he’s great at it.
The qualifications for the classics he chooses to restore are many. It’s a constant search across America for the rare few that still hide behind barn doors or under a cover inside a garage.
JG’s love for Mercedes-Benz diesels is tied only with his love for the open road. More often than not he flies to his new acquisition and drives the car back to Mercedes Motoring’s base in Los Angeles. The car might be in North Dakota or North Carolina. The longer the drive, the greater the bond that develops between JG and the car. He documents his road trips on camera and video, the results of which are often inspiring.
He works every day and loves every minute of it. Who wouldn’t love a job where they get to see hawks flying above while cruising over the rolling hills of this great land in an amazing classic car?
Here is a selection of beauties that JG has lovingly restored. Enjoy.
(JG enjoying the spoils of his labor- Ed.):