DAVID BARKER has had a passion for cars as long as he can remember, but the moment he first experienced a Range Rover stands out vividly…
“In 1974 when I was 17 my friend and I were given a 10-year-old Renault 8 Gordini. My friend’s father had just sold his business and treated himself to a brand new Range Rover. Although the car was new, he allowed us to drive it around a field towing the Renault in an effort to start it. The Renault never worked but from that day on I aspired to owning a Range Rover.
26 years later I was able to buy myself a second hand P38A, and ever since my daily driver has been a Range Rover. I’ve lost count of just how many I have had, but I never owned a first generation Range Rover like I drove in that field. Until 5 years ago, that is, when I decided to buy a Range Rover as a restoration project. After many months of scouring adverts and auction lots I managed to secure a winning bid on a 1981 Range Rover Convertible.
Range Rover Convertibles are now one of the rarest versions of this icon and genre-defining vehicle, with only a few examples surviving globally. My car was commissioned by Roger Taylor of Queen and sold to him through Rapport International of Mayfair, London. At the time the cost was more than double the list price of a standard model, over £200K at today’s prices.
The car was in a pretty poor state when I bought it, and had been badly modified and messed with over the years. After a long and problematic restoration, the car is now back to its original condition.
It looks fantastic and, following a full RPI Engineering engine rebuild and upgrade, drives like new!”