The concept of cars and coffee has been growing fast, catching on from city to city throughout the modified car scene and fuelled by social media.
Sydney’s Zen Garage has adopted the idea and this chilly Sunday morning was the debut of Cars-Zen-Coffee. Inviting car enthusiasts from every corner of Sydney’s car scene to drive their pride and joy out to meet like-minded motorheads and grab a cup of coffee (or two) and chat cars.
Now I think everyone who is enthusiastic about their car can all agree on one thing. Taking it out on an early Sunday morning is one of the purest forms of pleasure behind the wheel. Cars-Zen-Coffee just puts the icing on the already tasty cake.
Upon arrival to the Bella Vista hotel I was greeted with the familiar smell of petrol, mixed with fresh car wax, and coffee.. lots and lots of coffee.
Taking centre stage was this Nissan R32 GT-R, and rightly so. It is certainly one of the cleaner examples of this Japanese icon getting around Sydney.
While it may be tame on the outside, the interior was stripped of anything not needed then braced with a Cusco rollcage, fitted with bucket seats, and a custom centre console unit to hold all of the necessary gauges.
Not to mention the forged Rays CE28N wheels with massive AP Racing brakes tucked behind each one, I think it’s safe to bet the engine would have been equally as impressive.
Making my way past the crowds to get a much needed coffee, I learned I wasn’t the only one with that idea. While the wait may have been long, it provided a good opportunity to get talking to other car people and get an insight to their style of cars, Which only helped build the anticipation of what lay waiting outside.
With camera and coffee equipped I headed into the first car park, and Sydney sure did deliver. There was a large presence of cars fitted with Airex suspension, and the owners really took the opportunity to slam their cars down almost resting on the concrete itself.
They sure weren’t lacking in performance either. This Dixcel sponsored Toyota ’86 was packing some eye catching upgrades beneath its carbon fibre hood, as well as an impressively tasteful interior.
Due to large crowd, it was nigh impossible finding the owners of the cars, which left me at the end of the day with too many questions and nobody to ask. I’m sure all of the cars had their own backstory and modifications that you would never guess just from looking at them. But it’s these backstories that make the owners incredibly interesting if you do manage to track one down.
Feeling satisfied with what the first car park held, I decided it was time to check out what lay waiting for me on the other side. I was planning to cut through and grab another coffee, but I guess you could say I got distracted by a rather special car that had showed up.
I don’t know where Sydney has been hiding all of these Porcshes, but sure enough here they all were. Each one more interesting than the next. I can’t say I did much talking in this car park, there was just way too many cars stealing my attention.
It was great seeing kids everywhere, struggling to contain their excitement, and sometimes just silently watching as if they couldn’t believe their eyes. It really goes to show that cars are for everyone, not just for the race drivers and mechanics. Anybody no matter how old or how young can still find a little something they love about cars.
This Porsche GT3 Cup Car in full race trim wasn’t something you’d ever expect to see at a coffee house, It certainly had no trouble pulling a crowd once the throaty engine was revving and warming up.
As the morning came to an end, and people had places to be on their Sunday, cars started leaving one by one.
Even then I was still seeing cars I hadn’t seen yet this morning, like this Ford Mustang which growled its V8 down the street.
Then the time eventually came for me to leave too, with all my unanswered questions still flooding my mind. I though back to my original question.
Was Cars-Zen-Coffee a success? It most certainly was, and it was for everyone. I didn’t see a single person unhappy that morning. It was a great highlight to my weekend and I encourage anybody, whether they own a nice car or not to go check it out, and meet some great people over a coffee and some cars.
Story and Photos by Archie Brown