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  #1  
Old 04-02-08
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Default Michael's Motorsports in Millis, MA. Anyone use them?

So I'm driving through sleepy Millis, MA, and I'm stunned by the site of a Lotus Esprit sitting in front of a new shop at the junction of routes 109 and 115.

Days later, driving by the same shop, I notice that they claim to be Lotus and SAAB specialists. YES!

I'm planning on stopping in with the convertible to check them out. Before I do, I thought I'd check to see if anyone knows the shop or is current/previous customer?

http://www.michaelsmotorsports.com/
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  #2  
Old 04-02-08
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never heard of them. maybe they'd be willing to host a meet!?
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  #3  
Old 04-02-08
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I like the cut of your jib, sir!
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  #4  
Old 04-02-08
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Well this is promising... the owner's racing bio:

http://www.clubmotorsports.com/Membe...ly.cfm?NID=215
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  #5  
Old 05-02-08
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So I stopped by Michael's Motorsports this morning to set up an oil change appointment for this coming Friday. Oil changes are my favorite way to check out a new shop. As I pull in Mike's yellow Lotus Esprit, with a yellow #69 on the side window, is sitting in front of the shop. Also out front was an NG900 convertible (I believe it was a 900SE based on the wheels), and an older 9000. Inside the shop was an older Lotus Esprit. Definitely an interesting mix of specialties here.

I spoke to the owner, Mike Fridmann, and explained to me that his oil changes are "expensive" because he only uses full synthetic oil and manufacturer oil filters. Fine by me, because I would've specified at least the full-synth anyway.

I asked him about checking for sludge on the car due to the fact that it's a 32k mile, 6 year old car, and I've only had it for the last 8k miles. Mike says that he can hear if the car has sludge by listening to an oil vacuum line? He's either got a ton of experience in this area or I'm misunderstanding his methods. I'll find out more on Friday.

As I'm leaving, a tan 4 door 9-3, with a Euro shaped vanity plate on the front, was pulling in. That's when I realized that I forgot to ask for a labor rate.

More to come on Friday...
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  #6  
Old 05-02-08
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If you can find out just how "expensive" and how much his labor is, I might have him check out my car too, haha.

But yea, definitely post about your experience after Friday. Always good to have another Saab indy handy.
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  #7  
Old 08-02-08
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So that was a good experience. Mike wasn't kidding about his oil changes being expensive, it ran to $104 for a full synth change. I want to say that I paid $68 or $78 for a full synth oil change at the dealer.

Mike's labor rate is $89/hour, which is better than the local dealer at $108/hour. The oil change came to 0.5 hour of labor and then parts + tax made up the rest. The half an hour labor was purely that, 30 minutes of work that was stretched to more like an hour of us hanging around talking while the car was on the lift!

While the dealer experience is more about comfort, i.e. sitting in a customer lounge while the car is whisked away and out of sight, I much more prefer the ability to get out in the garage and have a peek underneath while the car is on the lift.

During the time when the oil was draining out of the engine, we had a look around at the suspension, checked for any leaks, got a good look at the way the tires are wearing, etc. We also talked about performance enhancements; braces, suspension, ecu flashing, etc. That's the real benefit here, Mike's a performance enthusiast with a shop. Easy to talk to, Mike will happily talk up the good and bad about a car and give you the information that you need to make informed decisions.

I'm going to follow up with Mike about a couple of things, mainly braces at this point, but I also came to find out that Mike's a Jaguar owner ('97 XJR) and he'll perform Jag work at his shop; this is perfect for me as I have a '97 Vanden Plas in the driveway.

End result? I'm going to continue to use this shop. I want to learn more about my SAAB (I'm going to be a SAAB newbie for a while), and I want to start down the road to enhancing it. I don't think I would get the same experience at a dealer, nor do I think I would have the opportunity to talk to a master mechanic while he's working on my car at the dealer, so Michael's Motorsports is my new shop.
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Sean
2002 9
3 SE Convertible | Red/Beige/Black | 5-speed
"I be SAAB'n, mon."

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