Victours offering something unique to Jamaica
Even though Victor Dixon did not have a lot of resources while growing up in Mandeville, he did not let it stop him from developing a love for cars at a tender age. "Back in the days we had to carve out lumber or any rubbish we could find to make things that look like cars. Even though we did not have money to buy a lot of toys, we were happy with our makeshift toy cars," Dixon said.
Throughout the years while going to Manchester High School and the University of the West Indies, Dixon maintained his love for cars. At first, the only thing he could do was admire many of the vehicles he liked, as he was not able to purchase his first until 1999. "The first vehicle I had was a 1971 Rover P6. I remember my father used to laugh at me and ask, 'what you doing with that old car in the yard?' But I had a vision at the time; it's actually the moment I started loving antique cars."
To showcase the special bond he has with this vehicle, Dixon still has it, in pristine condition, parked in his garage. After buying this car, Dixon waited four years to purchase his next vehicle and from then he has not stopped collecting them. Somewhere along the way, he bought the 1960 Chevrolet Apache 10 which was owned by one of his college batchmate's father.
"I always heard about the truck when we were studying, but never saw it, because her father had the truck in Spanish Town. However, years after we left university I called her one day and asked if her father still had the truck and she said yes," recollected Dixon.
This sparked an interest immediately in Dixon's mind and his next plot was to figure out how he was going to get it from Spanish Town to his home. "When I went to look at the truck it wasn't a pretty sight, but I looked at the truck as how it would look when it was finished. I had to put it on wrecker, and surprisingly, even in its rusty state people were stopping the wrecker to take pictures of it on the recently-opened Highway 2000," Dixon said.
Despite having a strong initial interest in the vehicle, the restoration process took 11 years, which is much longer in comparison to his other restorations. Dixon expressed that he was not happy with the finished product from the first job, along with the duration it took to source some of the parts. "It took a very long time to source the windshield and when it finally arrived in the island, it was the wrong one. Overall it was just an on-and-off project. I really didn't love how the restoration was coming along so I kept doing other projects in between."
For Dixon, restoring the vehicle to the original condition did not look as great as he would have hoped. "After we brought it back to its original condition, I didn't like it, so my team and I pulled it apart and came up with a different plan. This time we decided to do a 'restomod' where we used a different engine, sports suspension and a new interior."
This outcome delighted Dixon as it kept some elements of the original vehicle, while adding some modern features that make it a pleasure to drive. With the new look, Dixon said everyone is eager to take a picture with it. "When I go to the classic car club shows, the young people love it, even my wife has declared it her favourite truck," said Dixon.
With such an uncanny ability to restore classic vehicles to pristine conditions, Dixon has now developed his business, Victours, where he rents his vehicles for special events. "A lot of persons have rented the various vehicles for weddings, birthday parties and photoshoots. Even companies have been using them for their special parties. Once I realised that this was happening so frequently, I started to take it serious as a prosperous business.
Factors that determine price: While all vehicles are in driving condition, they are towed from parish to parish to avoid wear and tear.
What events to use an antique car for: Photoshoot, premium party, corporate social event and music video.