Le garage de Félix
Motorbikes: an affair of heart and soul
Garage de Félix was born out of my passion for bikes and fine objects. I’ve always been attracted to motor sports. Bikes, cars, on dirt or on a track, competition, as a group or staggered starts, fine mechanics, modern, but most of all old, have always held me spellbound. Classic machines have this extra soul that differentiates them from current production. For it really is a question of soul! Of the bikes – but of Félix too.
So just who is Félix?... He was the one who taught me everything, who made me what I am, who instilled in me the taste for hard work and a job well done. He was both my father and a very spiritual man. This is undoubtedly why he continues to inspire me.
Inspiration and creation rather than restoration – that’s what we base our activity on! We don’t restore, we create (or re-create) new machines, putting a little of our soul and a great deal of our heart into them. The bikes coming out of Garage de Félix only bear a very distant resemblance to what they were. They return to the world, as if transposed, reflecting an obvious modernity. Newer than new, but stamped with authenticity. They are a perfect fusion of present and past. Each one is a unique work that we certainly wouldn’t be able to duplicate.
I say we, as, even though I have an overflowing imagination for re-creating bikes from another era and making them into ultra-contemporary machines in the spirit of the times, this would be nothing without the almost religious input from Patrick. I write the melody, he scores and orchestrates it with consummate skill. Patrick is a true Mechanic – in the noble sense of the term, one might say. He worked for long years as a semi factory mechanic for endurance races – undoubtedly the most demanding discipline in motor sports, such is the extent to which the machines have to be both high-performance and also withstand 24 hours flat out, at a time when engines died more often than they were supposed to.
He’s really clued up about what it is that makes a machine efficient and reliable. But over and above his technical skills, it is his mastery of all things mechanical that makes him an exceptional bike builder. Not content with selecting and assembling the finest parts, he is capable of creating them if the need arises. He dismantles, shapes, welds, files, finishes, refits again; he adjusts to the millimetre until he obtains a result that verges on perfection. And to achieve that, time is a valued ally. We don’t count our hours. It is our love of things well done that presides over everything we do here at the “Garage”, not the clock.
Don’t expect an antiquated, old-style workshop covered with oil-stains. Our productions are made using elbow-grease and precision equipment. We operate in a secret location, ultra-modern, both spacious and as clean as our bikes are well finished.
You will have realized the bikes from Garage de Félix are not only pleasing to the eye or the ear, they are created for running for a long time and offering their rider the pleasure of riding an exceptional machine, with no second thought to its reliability.
When an engine comes to life again after long weeks in our lab/workshop, a little bit of Patrick’s heart beats within it — and Félix’s too… And if you are spellbound by our creations, even if only for a moment, by their purity, then that means we’ve done a good job.
Antoine Florio / Founder of and inspiration behind Garage de Félix