Like Father, Like Son – Part II

It was nearly 8 years ago that John Zuberek’s E30 M3 made its way to the homepage of StanceWorks for the first time. Along with it was John’s 1966 Mercedes 250S sedan, and together, they celebrated the his automotive roots, stemming from his own father’s passion for tinkering on automobiles throughout his life. Today, the E30 M3 he affectionately refers to as “Eve” returns to the homepage, and along side it, his father’s latest project: a 1967 Citroen DS21. The duo marks the longest gap to date on a pair of sequential features, but gives a remarkable opportunity to admire both growth in a car and its owner.

If you missed ‘Like Father, Like Son,’ it’s worth a trip back. It’s clear, without question, that Eve, the M3, has gone through some changes inside and out. Beginning with the underpinnings, the car has received an overhaul, with trailing arm and subfame bushings making the biggest difference. AKG Group N motor and trans mounts, and a paired poly diff mount hint to the car’s tightened disposition, which one might argue every M3 deserves. While nothing has changed under the hood itself, the inline-four now screams through a SuperSprint mid-section and an Eisenmann race exhaust, freeing up some ponies and allowing the high-strung four-banger to breathe a bit more freely.

Inside the coupe, John has made some changes as well: namely, a pair of Recaro SPG seats, a 4-point roll bar, a period-correct Italvolanti Formel wheel, and a Rennstall RSKT2 shift knob. The combination of parts matches what goes on beneath the car’s surface: sporty, but embracing, allowing John to feel right at home behind the wheel.

Eve’s exterior has received some new goodies too, such as Group A cup mirrors, euro grilles & smileys, Evo brake ducts, and an Evo 3 front splitter. The most obvious change, of course, is the wheel and tire package. The car now sits atop a set of 17×8.5 et13 BBS RS12s in original spec, a monumental upgrade over the 16″ style fives from eight years ago. The biggest change to the car, though, is perhaps not the most obvious… “Painting Eve was a huge milestone for me,” John explains.  “I put paint on a pedestal and I didn’t want anyone doing it other than JMI. So when the stars aligned I was thrilled.” The paint takes the M3 over the top, closer and closer to perfection and completion, in a sense.

As one project comes to a close – or at minimum, to the end of a chapter – another story begins. Having watched his son build a “dream car,” John’s father Jan decided it was time to build a dream car of his own. Having first become a Citroen fan in 1969 upon witnessing one laying low-slung to the ground, Jan has been enamored with the brand ever since. The Citroen DS has been a quirky car to see on the road ever since it was introduced, but that increases moreso having seen one in a communist-ruled Poland in the late 1960s, when most vehicles were of Eastern European make. Understandably, Jan fell in love, and not long ago, decided to embrace it.

Jan searched world-wide, hunting for the right example, but it was near his home town in Poland itself that the perfect unit popped up. Owned by a widow of a Citroen mechanic, the car had been in great hands for more than 30 years. Without hesitation, Jan made the purchase and planned to ship it home, but not before having the leather inside the car redone. Following that, Jan and his nephew trailer the car to Germany and exported it, shipping it home to Seattle here in the US of A.

Once the car arrived on US soil, the teardown began. Because it had been sitting for so long, the Citroen needed a slew of hydraulic work, as well as a new power steering rack, windshield replacement and windshield repair services from an auto glass replacement service (as there is a visible crack), a water pump, a radiator, and a custom hydraulic hose. In addition to all of this automotive repair, preventative maintenance like rust prevention was performed on the unibody, and following that, things like a new carpet and new air conditioning hoses were installed to bring the car back to life. John sums it up simply: “The goal is to bring the car back to its former glory.” 

Together, Jan and John are chasing their dream-car dreams, and with a bit of motivation, are helping each other along the way. While the  Citroen is quirky and comfortable, perfect for a relaxing Sunday drive, and the M3 is on the harsh side and only comes alive above 4500 rpm, the two have some drives planned in an effort to enjoy their dreams together. Like Father, Like Son. Perhaps, in due time, a Part III?



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