Tihomir Kuvalja (68), a retiree, former athlete and sports worker from Banja Luka, is returning life to old timers for decades, and one of his last projects was a Rolls-Royce from 1964, “the silver princess”, in which the famous actors Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton got married.
The love for old cars was “passed” onto him by his late friend Dragan Samardzija, who persuaded him to buy a “Mercedes” about four decades ago. After that “Mercedes” came the second one, then the third, several other cars, “Opel GT”…
His son found “Rolls-Royce”, at which he is currently working, on the Internet, and since Tihomir Kuvalja never had a “Rolls-Royce” before, he wanted to buy this one from America.
“It was in a bad condition, which means cheap. We usually buy cheap things because we have cheap labor and work, and we invest a lot more work and less money in order to achieve what people in the West have,” said Kuvalja.
Besides the “Rolls-Royce”, he currently has Mercedes 450 SL in his garage as well, and it is also from America. It was produced back in 1975 and has air conditioning, as well as electronic windshields that are completely working. “When it comes to that kind of cars,” stated Kuvalja, “there is always something to be done.” He can work all day when he is in the mood, but if it is not going, he gets his hands off the job after half an hour.
According to him, “to work with an old-timer, you need a lot of love, some money and time.”
“It cannot be done if a man is not into the job. It is a strange job and not just a simple mechanics. Simply, it happened to me that I started doing something that simply wasn’t going well, and I would just leave it for a few months. Then, I got my will back and I started from the very beginning,” stated Kuvalja.