Backstage at Louwman Exclusive –Wouter Dekker
According to Wouter Dekker he literally has been born in a car. As a son of a car dealer it was inevitably that Wouter chose to work with cars. For some years now he has been the familiar face of Morgan and TVR. Since last year he is also responsible for Bentley and Rolls-Royce at Louwman Exclusive.
You were born and raised with cars. Has there ever been another choice possible?
Not exactly! My father was a dealer of, among others: Chrysler, Jeep, Dodge, Saab and Suzuki. Next to his job he also collected cars, so you grow up with it. First I started to work in my father’s business, then I had my own business in used cars and I also started a Profile Tyre Center. When I decided to finish this after a couple of years, I was approached by NIMAG, dealing in Morgan and TVR. It came to me a bit early but it seemed like fun.
Apparently it suits you well because in the meantime you have been closely linked to Morgan and TVR for ten years.
Yes, but it is quite different from what I’d thought it would be. At that time I was 33 years old and thought: “Cool! I am going to work with TVR and, oh yes, also Morgan!” I was familiar with TVR and not with Morgan. The funny thing is that if you come into contact with a Morgan, it triggers you. You learn about the whole history of Morgan and after you experience that, you will value it too. In the beginning I did not have the plan to buy a Morgan myself but after two years it is really on my list. The Morgan is a real fun car, a different experience and that is what you have to show the customers. First the experience and then the enthusiasm will come naturally.
So we can say that you have the Morgan-virus? Are there people who do not understand the ‘fun’ about a Morgan?
It is not quite an uncomfortable car, we are not used to that anymore. Not everybody can see the charm in that. These are cars which give you the feeling of a classic car, but not the quirks of a real oldtimer, driving between the lorries on the highway at a speed of 80 km/h. Since we moved in 2003 from NIMAG to the showroom at Louwman Exclusive it is nice to be able to bring more people in contact with Morgan. People who never would have known how much fun it is to drive a Morgan 3 Wheeler.
Since this year you are also responsible for Bentley and Rolls-Royce. What is the difference between these two brands?
There is a lot of difference between Bentley, Rolls-Royce, Morgan and TVR but they have their rich history in common. They all are all-British brands, that grabs the imagination. Especially for me it is interesting to develop more knowledge about two new brands and to meet new customers. Morgan and TVR are very familiar to me and I found a new challenge with Rolls-Royce and Bentley.
Did you already buy the Morgan on your wish-list?
No, but it is still on my list. We are involved in the Morgan Club, so I frequently drive a Morgan professionally during events and rallies. I own a historic Ferrari Dino 308 from 1974 which I bought from my father-in-law. So I know the whole history. And I own a Suzuki LJ80, a kind of Jeep to which I am very attached to emotionally. When my father bought it I was eight years old and with that car we went off-road in the UK and travelled through Europe. We really enjoyed it. I have a bond with that car.
During a couple of years the car has been parked at a holiday home in the south of Germany and last year I drove it back to Holland together with my daughter. That also was quite an adventure. The car is now stored in the barn and I will never sell it.
Brand Manager Morgan, TVR, Rolls-Royce and Bentley / Employed since 2015 / Age: 44 / Children: 2 daughters / What keeps him busy outside work: even outside work Wouter is often seen in or with a car.