A man of many talents
Trying to capture the true essence of Iain Tyrrell in a few sentences is not easy:
One of the world’s foremost classic car experts, respected technical authority, restorer and historian, Iain is also an accomplished creative performing artist; blessed with more than his share of talent. He is constantly in demand both for his expertise and knowledge of classic cars, having been called upon from all corners of the globe, and for his talents in performing arts.
Virtually anyone involved with the world of classic cars will be familiar with Iain’s name, the depth of his knowledge of the classic car industry and the exceptional quality of his work. He is the quintessential classic car expert, and is now a ‘go-to’ reference for some of the world’s most coveted car manufacturers.
Iain has had a deep passion for all things car-related all his life. His real turning point from enthusiasm to profession happened when he was 19. He got a phone call out of the blue inviting him to work as a trainee mechanic at a (then) Rolls-Royce and Bentley service centre. When he was 21 years old he set-up his own company, Tyrrell Engineering, to service, tune and restore prestige and high performance cars, specialising in overhauling and setting up cars for optimal enjoyment and reliability on road and track.
Iain was contracted by Rolls Royce Motors in the early 1990’s to carry out warranty work, on their behalf, on new Rolls-Royce and Bentley cars at their customers’ request. This was a unique and unprecedented arrangement; he was the only person thus qualified outside the factory/dealer network worldwide. In 2004 Iain founded Cheshire Classic Cars in the UK. The business was shaped and directed by Iain and his business partner until early 2018, when he then established Iain Tyrrell Consulting.
Iain has also undertaken major restoration work on several significant and high value classic cars, including the Ferrari 250GT “Tour de France” that won the Mille Miglia Rally and is featured in the book “Ferrari 250GT”. Other notable projects include: a full ground up restoration of a 1964 Mercedes 600 Pullman including a number of bespoke features; a full engine overhaul and upgrade on a 1937 Rolls Royce Phantom III, including reinstatement of hydraulic tappets; and for example more recently several award-winning full restorations of Lamborghini Miuras.
He has been called on as an expert witness in several high profile cases involving cars of very significant value, including representing Lloyds of London in the Lord Brocket case. Amongst the more amusing jobs he has done is tuning Police Interceptor powerboat engines! It’s true to say there’s hardly a make or model of top-end car produced in the last 70 years that he has not worked on and driven extensively. His particular speciality remains tuning of complex and demanding engines.
He has been called upon as a Technical Reference Judge at highly prestigious car Concours events across several continents.
One of Iain’s calling cards in recent times has been the unearthing and authentication of ‘the’ iconic Lamborghini Miura from the 1969 classic film The Italian Job, which was widely reported in the world’s media. Iain has now been voted as Technical Officer of the Lamborghini Club UK as at June 2019.
Iain’s passion for the performing arts stretches all the way back to 1979 when he started out doing amateur dramatics. Following years of study and live performances, Iain is in demand for a range of work, from charity concerts to TV programmes and voice-overs. He was professionally operatically trained in voice discipline during the 1990’s.
No stranger to high profile performances, Iain was once contracted to sing with American jazz legend Ben Tucker and his band in the U.S. Ben’s band accompanied Iain at venues in the Southern U.S. and live on NBC TV. Other artists such as Ravi Coltrane also performed with Iain and Ben at this time. Tucker openly referred to Iain as ‘the Frank Sinatra of Europe’ – high praise indeed! Another car aficionado Ben played with was Miles Davis.
After unearthing ‘the Italian Job Miura’ in 2015, as a bit of mischief Iain returned to the studio with his friend, blues guitarist and composer Steve Wright, and they recorded their own version of the song that is forever linked with the car; On Days Like These. All Iain’s and Steve’s proceeds from this recording go to charity. Downloads are available from iTunes, Amazon music and Spotify.