Talking Vintage Cars with Huseyin Erturk

We’ll admit it — we have a healthy obsession with automobiles. From the newest releases to rare, vintage models, cars are one of our most favorite things to admire…and collect. Needless to say, when we stumbled across the work of automotive photographer, Huseyin Erturk, we were immediately taken. His photographic eye is second to none and he’s captured some of the most stunning cars that he spots around Los Angeles. Recently, we caught up with Erturk to hear more about his fascination with beautifully designed rides and learn about his dream fleet, who he’d most like to see in his passenger seat, and more. Read on, then give us a shout about your own car collection. With wheels like these, coverage is key, and we’ll ensure you get the coverage you need. 

Tell our readers a little more about yourself.
I was born in Turkey and moved to Los Angeles around eight years ago to study graphic design. Shortly after moving, I found myself taking photos of the beautiful cars here in Los Angeles, which led me to become an automotive photographer.

Who would you most like to see in your passenger seat and why?
My dad, since he ignited my passion in the industry. We live very far away from one another, so I cherish the times we can go for a drive. He has been the largest influence on my life and has always had a large collection of automobile-focused magazines that he kept in the house. From an early age, I was inspired by car design and photography.

You capture incredible photos of automobiles, what draws you to certain models from a visual point-of-view?
Thank you! To me, it’s all about capturing the character of the car. There are particular models, such as the Porsche 911 or Jaguar E Type, that really draw me in with their sculptural designs. With that being said, you can also find me taking photos of a ratty ‘70s muscle car if the backdrop complements the car.

What’s your favorite car brand? Model? 
It would have to be Porsche thanks to their relevancy and timelessness. For example, the 911 encompasses all those qualities — regardless of their age, they tend to deliver a memorable experience.

If you had to choose one—vintage or new?
It’s hard to pick, but I’d have to say vintage. I’ve been wanting a beautiful vintage automobile for a long time. I just love the charm, design and even the smell of a vintage car.

When it comes time to purchase a luxury car, what sorts of considerations should our readers take into account?
If it’s the buyer’s first purchase, it’s important to find a dealership that can provide them with the trust and experience that they deserve while purchasing a luxury car. It’s in a buyer’s best interest to establish a strong relationship with a particular dealership for any future purchases or maintenance needs. 

When it comes to used cars, a pre-purchase inspection must be done at a dealership or by a specialized independent mechanic. Seeking service records and a clean car history are essential.

Where would you find service records for a used car purchase? How do you tell if the car history is clean?
Service records can be obtained from the owner or the dealer. Some owners neglect collecting paperwork and that could create some extra negotiating room for buyers. Just like service records, most sellers should be able to provide you the vehicle’s history report as well, but if they are unable to do so, it can be accessed online through companies like Carfax and Autocheck. These reports provide information like title status, registration history, accident reports, and maintenance history. Just be aware that these reports may not always be accurate — some cars are fixed up without insurance companies getting involved, which may prevent certain accident records from showing up on the report. That’s where the pre-purchase inspection comes in handy.

How do you maintain a luxury car? Any insider tips our readers should know?
Following the car’s maintenance schedule is essential to keeping your car in good shape, mechanically. In terms of the appearance of the vehicle, paint protection films and ceramic coatings are great ways to preserve your paint.

A ceramic coating provides an extra layer of protection from oxidation and corrosion of your paint. They last about two years. A lot of places offer this service nowadays, but I think it’s best to get it done at places that have an expertise in paint protection. I recently used a company called Cilajet — they specialize in ceramic coating and I’m very happy with the result. 

Paint protection films, on the other hand, provide an even higher level of protection. It’s basically a layer of clear vinyl that can even protect you from rock chips and small dings. It’s a more expensive application and, because of that, some prefer to apply it only on particular parts of the car such as the front bumper where most paint damage would occur. 

Which cars tend to hold their value over others?
Rare cars will typically hold their value. If you also take into consideration brand value and character, then you will most likely end up with a car that could appreciate in value.

How do you determine brand value and character in a car?
As with any industry, car brands need to have a strong set of values that set them apart from the competition. Looking into a brand’s heritage can determine its core values. For example, Ferrari has been present in Formula 1 since the 1950s — they’re the only manufacturer to have done so. Legacies like this influence customer perception, which then continues to improve the brand’s market value. 

Character in a car can be determined by its uniqueness and the particular experience it can provide to its driver. For example, Porsche’s flat-six engines create a particular sound note that other cars don’t possess and Rolls Royce’s dream-like ride quality can’t be matched by any other car. 

What car should a beginning collector look out for?
It all depends on taste and budget, but it’s always wise to buy a car that you can genuinely enjoy without placing too much importance on its potential long term value. 

Finding a clean example of a ’90s or a 2000s enthusiast’s model (like the BMW M3 or Honda S2000) can be a great start. Production numbers on these models may not be low, but finding a clean and unmodified version will get more difficult as time goes on.

If you could curate your dream collection, which cars would be in it?
A Mercedes Benz 300SL, Porsche 911 ST, Lamborghini Miura, Ferrari 250 SWB, and Ferrari 458 Speciale. 

The Mercedes 300SL is regarded as the first-ever supercar by many. It is also known to be way ahead of its time in terms of ingenuity and speed. With its Gullwing doors and striking, unique styling, it’s one of the most important cars in automotive history. 

There are so many variations of classic Porsche 911s to pick from. To me, the 911 STs stand out with their racing pedigree and also with their wider fender flares.

The Miura is special in so many ways. Lamborghini not only created one of the most beautiful cars in the world, but they also became a very big influence on sports car manufacturing thanks to the mid-engined Miura. When it first came out, Ferrari didn’t offer any mid-engine road cars. 

Ferraris from the 1950s and 1960s are the pinnacle of car design in my opinion. Many car enthusiasts dream of being behind the iconic wooden steering wheels from that era and my pick would be the 250 SWB. It’s the model that perfectly combines elegance and speed.

Lastly, the 458 Speciale is the last naturally aspirated mid-engine car that was produced by Ferrari. They will likely never produce another car like this again due to emissions. On top of that, the Speciale was the more hardcore version of the 458 Italia model which makes it even more sought after.

Anything you should do differently in terms of insurance when it comes to luxury cars of a certain age or caliber?
Leave it to an expert!

A vintage car you drive every once in a while needs much different coverage than the luxury sedan you drive every day. Find a broker you trust, one that understands the insurance for high-end cars, one that understands your passion for your vehicles, and let them advise you on the best coverage. There are certain features high-end insurers offer that are must-haves for auto enthusiasts. If anything ever happens, I want to choose which body shop does the repair. I need to know they aren’t using knock-off parts. It’s a lot to think about. The key is to find a broker you trust.

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