Nathaniel (Nat) has an extensive engineering background as well as a passion for anything powered by internal combustion! After gaining a degree in mechanical engineering, he worked for several years as a Process Improvement Engineer for Timken Bearings, at their Leicestershire based steel rolling mill. Following this he was employed by Metzeler/Schlegel automotive (an automotive sealing systems manufacturer, supplying companies such as Bentley and Toyota) as Engineering Projects Manager. Nat is in charge of the fabrication and engineering side of Retropower, and is more than capable of taking an automotive ‘dream’ and turning it into carefully designed and perfectly executed piece of engineering.
Equally fanatical about cars, Callum (Cal) brings the ‘artistic’ element to the table. As well as being an experienced mechanic he has a history in music production and sound engineering, as well as serving many years on the management team at a large hotel & conference centre, something that gives Cal customer service manners not often associated with the automotive trade! Cal has also always been a dedicated petrolhead, owning and restoring dozens of unusual cars over the years, as well as helping Nat with his projects along the way. Cal is in charge of the design, assembly and wiring side of Retropower, and his eye for detail and vision for that ‘perfect’ combination of old and new ensures our vehicles look as good as they go!
Gaz joined us at the start of 2011 and has a wealth of bodywork knowledge. He has over 15 years experience in the automotive bodywork trade both as a painter and, prior to starting at Retropower, working for a bodyshop products supplier. This has given Gaz an invaluable, in-depth knowledge of paints and bodyshop products. Gaz is responsible for the bodyshop side of Retropower, ensuring every car leaves us with show-winning paintwork!
Tom is the latest addition to the Retropower team having started in the Spring of 2021, and he’s already made himself indispensable through his comprehensive fabrication skills. Tom’s background is metalwork through and through having cut his teeth at Martin Robey Group, one of the UK’s preeminent manufacturer and supplier of Jensen and Jaguar panels. He’s therefore well-versed in the art of tin-bashing, skills he’s already brought to bear on, amongst others, the Jensen CV-8 and the Land Cruiser. We look forward to showing you what he’s capable of in the weeks, months and years to come, so watch this space!
Joining us mid 2012, Stu brings a lifetime of panel beating experience to the table. Stu started his career at Research Garage in 1979 as an accident repair panel beater. He subsequently took a position at Custom Chrome exhausts as a fabricator but later returned to Research until we took him on in 2012. 35 years of automotive metalwork experience combined with a passion for modified classics (Stu’s 4×4 V8 powered Midget is well known in MG circles) makes Stu an invaluable member of our superb team.
A qualified engineer and the individual in charge of the Retropower assembly hall, Adam’s keen eye for detail has proved an invaluable resource in the rebuild of dozens of our projects and has been brought to bear on builds as diverse as the Murray Mk1 Escort and the Chevette rally car.
An old Ford devotee of the most committed sort, Adam owns a Mk2 Escort and a Sapphire Cosworth at present, the former having followed him back from Australia some years ago! Both are exquisitely built and beautifully finished – testament to his aforementioned eye for detail.
James joined his brother as part of our dedicated assembly team in the summer of 2019, which in practice means he’s tasked with finalising much of the custom engineering underpinning all our projects. James comes to us off the back of an extended spell at a specialist engineering firm charged with CNC turning key components for aeronautical giants Boeing and Airbus, meaning he’s well placed to tackle the completion of bespoke ‘Benzes’ and Alfas.
James’s passion for old cars extends beyond the hours of 8am to 5.30pm and if reflected in his own fleet, one entirely in keeping with the Retropower ethos. A Lexus LS400 daily is merely the tip of the daily driven iceberg; James also has his John Hancock atop the V5C of a Peugeot 205 XS and, in line with his brother, a Mk2 Escort, a car soon to be powered by the Zetec from a Focus ST170.
Our junior panel beater joined us in 2017, and despite having a hard act to follow is doing an outstanding job. The star of many of our popular ‘Metalwork Minute’ videos, Scott’s abilities are all the more remarkable when you consider he’d barely touched a welder or a ball-peen hammer before joining Retropower. Those days are firmly in the rear-view mirror nowadays of course, and there really isn’t much in the sphere of metalworking that Scott can’t turn his hand to these days, as evidenced by the Morris Minor’s custom front and rear bulkheads.
It’s probably easier to list the jobs Rich hasn’t done than to compile those he has, though a condensed version must include a spell building boats in the Caribbean and Turkey, a crossing of the Pacific, and perhaps most bizarrely of all, time spent sheep farming on the Falkland Islands. All that experience working with marine composites (including pre-impregnated carbon fibre), not forgetting the general day-to-day engineering that’s part and parcel of any ocean faring voyage, means that Rich is both talented and versatile, more than capable of solving automotive problems as and when they arise.
Steve is the latest addition to the Retropower paint and bodywork team and comes to us off the back of an impressively varied career, one that has seen him tasked with prepping some of the country’s most advanced race cars for paint. Indeed, Steve’s career to this point in time reads like a condensed ‘who’s who’ of Britain’s ‘Motorsport Valley,’ with McLaren, Red Bull and Haas F1 all featuring prominently. Steve has even tasted vicarious Olympic glory through his work, having had a hand in preparing and painting the bicycles ridden to such brilliant effect by Team GB in 2016.
In addition to being a dedicated paint pro with a keen eye for detail Steve also suffers from that most endearing (and laudable) of petrolhead afflictions, namely an inability to stop himself buying retro cars! A pair of Vauxhall Chevettes, a Bedford CF camper with a ‘snap-off’ clutch cable, an Isuzu Trooper and a Land Rover Discovery (both suitably attired with hard-won mud), a ‘drifty’ S14 and a Nova: all have Steve’s name atop their V5s at the time of writing, and all are modified to some degree.
Adam is the latest addition to the Retropower team and joins us fresh from a spell working for a certain, well known international car maker – though we’ll leave it down to you to guess which one! A talented engineer with a proven track record for building cars, Adam has already demonstrated his ability to turn his hand to pretty much any automotive task going, and as such you’ll already find his handiwork in builds like the Ford Mustang ‘fast back’ and the running gear for Minor Threat, our custom, Zetec-powered Morris Minor.
A keen club level motor racer, Adam has dabbled in everything from bangers and short ovals to the one-marque Fiesta XR2 challenge, a competitive CV which underscores his ability to derive petrol-powered joy from almost anything so long as it’s getting on a bit. He’s presently in the process of buying a (non Cosworth) Sierra, or perhaps a (non-XR or RS) Mk3 Escort, so it’s not hard to tell where Adam’s petrolhead loyalties truly lie!
George’s arrival at Retropower constitutes a step up in our capabilities and with it the service we’re able to offer our customers. A dedicated Designer and CAD engineer of some talent, George learned his craft at Coventry University and graduated with a First class with honours in Automotive and Transport Design. His input has already proved instrumental, and you’ll find his work on projects as diverse as Project Utah and Project Vader, as well as the series of BMW E30s we’ll be producing under the ‘REDUX’ banner moving forward.
A car guy of the purest sort, when not interrogating bevels, chamfers and fillets for Retropower’s benefit George can often be found in a barn working on his own pair of projects. The first is an Audi 80 Avant, a car which George describes as being “a bit of a Frankenstein creation, with lots of 80, S2 and RS2 parts smashed together to create something quite unique.” The second is a Mk2 Escort, very much his pride and joy and a riot of orange and black. It’s also shod with a plethora of custom parts of George’s own design, and is underpinned by a hot Crossflow soundtrack that’s as beguiling as it is effective.
‘Bobby’ Boyan Primov
A whirling dervish of engineering talent, Bobby joined Retropower in the Autumn of 2022 and has wasted little time in making himself an indispensable member of the team, both in the Metalwork and Assembly phases of the build process.
A time served engineer with vast experience on which to call, Bobby’s automotive origins trace to his native Bulgaria and the tuning and repair business he founded many years ago. This eventually led him to design, produce and market a selection of chassis tuning parts for a number of cars (most notably the Peugeot 306 and 406), including polyurethane bushes and associated suspension componentry. These have since been sold across the globe, from central Europe to Australia.
Since joining Retropower Bobby has demonstrated a knack for turning his hand to most any engineering task you care to mention, and his handiwork can already be found in projects as diverse as the Project Stravaig (the Chevrolet Camaro) and Projects One and Kuma (a pair of ‘sister’ Mk1 Escorts).
Perhaps surprisingly given his fastidious eye for detail Bobby’s personal project of choice is a Nissan Navara, a truck he’s since stripped and rebuilt, shod with elongated suspension for increased travel and improved camber control, and set about using it for ‘green laning’ and associated ‘mud-plugging’ fun.
The arrival of Sam at Retropower lends the team a truly inter-continental affair, with the young metalworker having opted to up-sticks and leave his home in New Zealand to come work on restomod projects in the English East Midlands!
Fortunately for all concerned Sam has proved to be an invaluable member of the burgeoning Retropower family. Thrown in at the deep end by being tasked with the marshalling of the final metalwork stages of Project Kuma, one half of our Mk1 Escort ‘double act,’ Sam has risen to the challenge, and in fact positively thrived. He’s since demonstrating a keen eye for detail and an uncanny knack for metal-shaping and honing, skills we’re sure he’ll continue to make impressive use of on Retropower builds in the months and years to come.
When not working on Retropower banner builds Sam works on projects of his own, chiefly a phase one Peugeot 106. This car, now adorned with a retina-singing array of Hella spotlights, has been making the slow transformation from shopping conveyance to near road-rally weapon – at least if reports of his early morning commute into work are anything to go by!
A Retropower returnee, Marc worked within the dusty depths of our bodyshop for many years before moving to rural France some five years ago. A hankering for automotive sanding (and perhaps a decent Full English breakfast) drove him back to these shores last year, and within months he was back where he undoubtedly belongs, ensconced within the Retropower bodyshop!
Marc’s time served, practised eye for spotting and correcting potential paint defects before they come to fruition has already proved its worth, and we look forward to having him back, onboard and a key fixture of the Retropower family for many years to come.
Part of our Assembly-Engineering team, Ant joined Retropower in the Spring of 2023 and has already proved an invaluable member of the team, just as adept at proffering inventive solutions to build-dilemmas as he is at selecting the perfect old school punk playlist for the collective mood of the workshop at that particular point in time.
Ant’s passion for cars began in the depths of childhood, when alternate purchasing of Custom Car and Volksworld magazine engendered a love for all things old school, ideally with V8 propulsion. Indeed, Ant professes that he learned early on that, much as he loved the appearance of air-cooled Beetles and buses, he hated their engines, and while he’s yet to find time to mate the two together himself, he has well and truly scratched his V8 itch by building a truly sensational Ford Pop hot rod.
The ‘rod’ in question came into Ant’s ownership well over 20 years ago, and he’s spent the ensuing decades first bringing it back to life, then tailoring it to suit his own tastes. Thus what began as a down-at-heel ’56 car with scruffy bodywork and an Essex V6 has evolved into a true Brit-rod icon, complete with air-suspension, a Powerlock back-end and a V8, specifically the 302 5.0l from a ’79 Mustang, shod with a reground crank and three-way ported heads.
The finishing touch was inspired by Ant’s time served as a main dealer Peugeot mechanic, namely the paint, the Pop having sported a coat of ‘Blaze Yellow,’ the sort of deep-gold metallic most often associated with 306 GTis. It was a brave choice, and one many of Ant’s peers cautioned against, but he’s since been more than vindicated – not least as his ‘rod’ is now one of several sporting an identical colour palate!
The addition of Alex to the team brings to Retropower a new and exciting capability, namely advanced ECU programming, software development and modification and wiring loom manufacture and rationalisation. As such he constitutes another string to our company ‘bow,’ helping to ensure that there really is precious little in the sphere of automotive development that we’re not able to offer in house and on-site.
Perhaps more pertinently Alex’s engineering credentials are second to none, a legacy of a career spent working for some of the UK’s foremost tuning powerhouses. A Higher National Diploma in Motorsport Engineering functioned as springboard, first to a role at QED – or Quorn Engine Developments, then Ridgeway Racing Engines as a Project Manager.
From there Alex moved to DTA, soon becoming one of the firm’s most trusted development engineers charged with installing and refurbishing dynos, plus the development of new ECUs, housings and wiring loom harnesses for applications of all types. A spell at JE Engineering, where he was entrusted with the tuning of automatic gearbox and associated software, was Alex’s final ‘stop’ before joining the Retropower team early in 2023.
As for Alex’s own, personal car selection, variety is very much the order of the day, which is why you’ll find projects as diverse as an S12-shape Nissan Silvia (“one and a half Nissan Silvias, actually”), an Audi S6 V10 (not bad for a daily driver), and most impressively of all, a mid-engined Fiat Coupe 20v Turbo project. The engine for this car looks set to be quite the power plant, replete with custom cams, Omega pistons, Robson Engineering con-rods, Jenvey throttle bodies, titanium valve spring retainers, 3mm oversized valves and a DTA ECU.
Another new recruit to the ever-growing CAD department, Luke joins Retropower having just completed a degree in Motorsport Engineering with a focus on component design, development and testing.
Luke has already proved to be an invaluable member of the design crew, a collective ensconced within an area of the mezzanine affectionately known as ‘The CAD Loft,’ with some of his early work destined to ultimately adorn Project One (the first of the Mk1 Escorts) and Project Lucky Strike, the first of a pair of Austin Allegro-Honda Integra hybrid creations. Evidence of Luke’s keen eye for design detail can also be seen under the bonnet of the ’69 Chevrolet Camaro, Project Stravaig.
In common with everyone at Retropower, Luke is an unabashed and unapologetic car obsessive of the best sort. A childhood spent watching TV shows like ‘Discovery Turbo’ were responsible for instilling in Luke a powerful interest in automotive projects of all sorts, a passion that only increased in potency once he graduated to YouTube and the wealth of truly immersive car culture the site plays host to.
An adolescent interest in rallying in general and Suzuki’s Super 1600 programme in particular (yes that’s right, Luke really is that young) did the rest, and before long Luke was wedded to the idea of owning a Swift Sport of his own, an ambition he achieved prior to joining Retropower. The Swift in question has since been taken on a dedicated fast-road development path with the usual prerequisites for such a tuning route already in place – think lowered suspension, uprated brakes and an induction kit, though whether Luke continues down this route rather depends on his ability to get his hands on his actual, real-world dream car – a Peugeot 205 GTI.
Jamie cut his teeth working on the editorial staff of Classic Ford and Performance Vauxhall magazines, followed by a brief freelance career writing for the likes of Motor Sport, Fast Ford, Retro Cars and Pacenotes. A spell at an automotive PR firm followed, before Jamie joined the Retropower team in June of 2018. His tasks consist of social media, website upkeep, PR and various written tasks, meaning he’ll almost certainly wax lyrical about your own particular project should you opt to entrust it to Retropower. Jamie is also responsible for shooting, editing and producing the weekly ‘Retropower Uncut’ video series.