Over in Ireland, Porsche fanatic Wayne McCarthy’s forthcoming classic car destination is set to woo the air-cooled crew
Wayne McCarthy’s passion for Porsche runs deep. Growing up working for his father's automotive business, which for 50 years included Ireland's largest Opel dealership, he sold a variety of marques. Yet, despite numerous potential distractions, there’s been one manufacturer that has inspired like no other.
However, the path to Porsche came via the junior entry route, with Wayne cutting his automotive teeth as a teen via the purchase of a VW Beetle. And like many like-minded young Wolfsburg enthusiasts, it was inevitable he was destined to gravitate to Stuttgart.
“Having that Beetle experience opened the door into that air-cooled world, and the history that flows between the two companies,” says Wayne.
“Furthermore, in Ireland, countryman and rally driving legend Billy Coleman raced for both manufacturers back in the day, further spiking that emotional connection.”
Wayne was now playing his part in dad’s business, with used Porsche’s passing through the company at a rate, alongside the official dealership marques.
His first Porsche purchase was a 356 Super 90 in his late teens, kicking off the journey for real. “That was a special car, in fact I held onto it until 2012!”
There’s also been a couple of 924s and 944s along the way, however, like many, there’s one model that stands out.
“My dream car was always the 911," says Wayne.
"The history, the driving experience, that flat-6, there’s nothing quite like it. I’ve probably sold hundreds and been fortunate to have owned a number – SC Targa’s, 964s, 3.2s, cabriolets. They really are my first love!”
After his father passed away in 2015, and with 25 years as a Saab dealer in Cork city under his belt, Wayne decided to take the business in another direction.
Setting up Edgewood Automotive, the focus is now on selling classics, and mainly of the Porsche variety.
“I do a lot of business in the UK with every kind of classic dealer and have numerous contacts in the classic world. We’ve had some wonderful cars pass through from all over the world. Only this week we had a 2013 50th Anniversary 911 arrive with just 88 miles on the clock. The owner actually had two, the other being his regular driver, so I bought that for myself!”
“I’m aiming for a ‘coffee and cars’ experience,” says Wayne.
“Traditionally we sold to private buyers who preferred discretion, however given the popularity of classic Porsche’s we want to engage with the wider community.
Enthusiasm for Porsche in Ireland is at its peak, with a record number of Club members.”
So what is it about Porsche that has driven Wayne’s passion so many decades?
“The history is just so unique. Look at the philosophy of Ferdinand and what he set out to do,” explains Wayne. “His approach, the engineering, the make-up of the engines, it all adds up to a special car. My first love is classic Porsche, so it’s a pleasure to work in this world.”
Style's 'Drive Five'
Most memorable road trip
I drove my 356 from Ireland to the factory in Stuttgart, via visit to my dad in Reading and a couple of VW shows, long with a tour of the VW factory in Wolfsburg.
Favourite Stretch of Road
The Ring of Kerry. I was fortunate to drive with Billy Coleman, who lived locally in Ireland, and we covered that in the famous Rothman’s 911. To hear the sound of that flat six is incredible!
Ultimate Road Trip
It’s already planned! I’m visiting Utah and Omaha Beach in Normandy to see where the D-Day landings took place.
Ideal Porsche for the journey
It would have to be the 50th Anniversary 911 (left).
Dream Driving Partner
My dad, or Billy Coleman, he might just get it! Can you make an exception for two?!