Today we’d like to introduce you to John Benton.
So, before we jump into specific questions about the business, why don’t you give us some details about you and your story.
Growing up in L.A. in the 60’s and 70’s, you could not keep from being immersed in the car culture that existed.
Drive through dairies, drive through markets, drive in movies, and car hop diners.
Cruise nights, street drags, and Mulholland Drive crews were alive and thriving.
General Motors, Ford, Uniroyal, and Firestone, had huge Plants nearby.
I remember going on a field trip to the GM Plant in elementary school and then driving home in our family’s Chevrolet.
Spending Saturday riding a bike around town to see what was at the dealerships that lined Firestone Blvd for miles.
However, the cars that drew my attention the most were VW and Porsche cars. Although rare compared to vast numbers of cars available at the time, there were examples within the family circle and around town.
As soon as I could find a way, an early VW Beetle was mine all mine. I was only 15 and had no license, but the mission was on!
The passion was real then and is real now. A procession of old worn out VW, Alfa, and Chevrolet cars eventually lead to a Porsche. A Porsche that I still own over 30 years later.
This car changed my life forever. It was a multipurpose car that was used for transportation, cruising, canyon runs, and club racing.
Working my way up the technical latter at various manufacturing facilities while studying a wide range of mechanical and engineering disciplines gave me a solid skill set.
Combining that skill set and a need to improve my car, lead me straight to where I am today.
At some point, other passionate people wanted to work together on their cars. It became clear to me that I would have to leave the corporate word and start a proper shop.
After working from my house for decades, I started my first shop in South Gate. Soon after a bigger shop in La Habra. After six years in La Habra, an even bigger move to the current location in Anaheim.
I still live in Downey Ca, in the first house I bought. I love the community and its close proximity to DTLA!
The long commute to Anaheim is necessary, as my plan was to be in an area that could service a broader portion of So Cal.
We have clients from all over the globe now. Since 1986, Benton Performance has been hip deep into Porsche service and restoration. Now in 2017, Benton Performance has 7 employees and over 7000 square feet of dedicated to building dreams.
There is a steady flow of vintage Air Cooled excellence moving through the shop. From regular maintenance service to full restoration and race prep, it’s all happening here.
Overall, has it been relatively smooth? If not, what were some of the struggles along the way?
No such thing as smooth in this business. Much like the artists of antiquity, we are here to serve those that want something special. And the numbers of patrons we are blessed to have, fluctuate with the economy and demand for the art we produce.
I would say the hardest obstacle was the banking snafu that finally hit the US in late 2008. That was the first time it seemed like the new normal was an adversarial relationship with banking establishments.
It was tough and many of the shops that were present in my neighborhood disappeared.
You really have to watch the horizon and keep your brand relevant. The landscape changes like the tides. social media has become paramount to success. Combining experience, reputation, and a strong media presence is essential to brand survival.
Benton Performance – what should we know? What do you guys do best? What sets you apart from the competition?
We are a culture based service provider to the Porsche and vintage sports car community.
We commit our resources to building the best possible outcome for our clients.
Caring, sharing, and commitment to excellence is the foundation of our Brand. We are known for building some of the finest vintage Porsche cars, for over 30 years. We have competed at a high level in concourse and vintage racing.
We are a family owned independent shop with a wide range of skills and experience.
A constant journey to better ourselves and increase our exposure to possibilities makes us different to most shops.
The pursuit of happiness is not lost here.
What is “success” or “successful” for you?
Success for me is more spiritual than monetary. Paying my associates well and giving them personal freedom is very important.
Putting everything back into the business is and has always been the way.
Building a culture of sharing and caring is a constant focus.
Keeping everyone on the same plane while maintaining independent thought and discussion about the things we care about as a shop.
Building a community that is sustainable through tough times.
Ultimately, to create something that lives beyond our time here.
- Hourly Rate – 135.00
- Address: 1275 North Lance Lane,
Anaheim, CA 92806
- Website: Www.Bentonperformance.com
- Phone: 714-630-5025
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Instagram: BentonPerformance
- Facebook: BentonPerformance
- Twitter: Fastwrench