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Turkey’s largest auto and motorcycle museum is located outside Izmir: the KEY Museum displays over 170 models, from the 1886 Benz motorcar to modern super sports cars. Each vehicle is restored to its original factory condition before it is put on display. Each vehicle is restored to its original state before being displayed, and they rely on products and technical knowledge from Standox.
With around 150,000 residents, Torbalı is no small town. All the same, for many visitors to Turkey it´s an unknown quantity – due mainly to the resplendence of the nearby metropolis of Izmir, just a few kilometres away.
Nevertheless, for about three years now there has been a very good reason for car enthusiasts to plan a side trip there: the KEY Museum, which opened in Torbalı in 2015, houses a unique collection of historical cars and motorcycles throughout its 7,000-square-metre location
On 7,000 square meters, the KEY Museum shows more than 170 vehicles.
Fascinating highlight: The rare US classic "Kaiser Darrin" (1950s).
One of the largest car dealers in Turkey
The museum was founded by the brothers Murat and Selim Özgörkey (the museum was named after the last syllable of their name).
The two classic car fans and collectors run a conglomerate based in Izmir that’s also active in the automotive sector: The E. Özgörkey Group is one of the leading car dealerships in western Turkey for BMW, MINI and several other brands, and it runs authorised repair shops.
Selim und Murat Özgörkey.
One of them is based in Izmir, and it prominently attests to the company’s commitment to quality: the company’s representative showroom has the complete line of current BMW and MINI models.
Customer service includes repair services, tyre service and vehicle exterior and interior cleaning. The workshop is state-of-the-art.
In the paint shop: Standohyd Plus mixing machine.
The same is true of the paint shop, with its modern mixing system that uses Standohyd plus. “Careful colour matching is very important for us”, says Ersin Arslan, head of the branch´s paint shop. “So we’re right in line with BMW’s latest gloss finish.”
Although the BMW sales and the museum are operationally separate in the E.Özgörkey Group, the affinity with the Bavarian car brand is also evident in Torbalı: The museum particularly houses lots of BMW classics.
BMW 503, 1957
Rare classic: Frazer Nash BMW 319 from the middle of the 1930s.
Like the Dixi, the first car to come on the market with the BMW logo, at the end of the 1920s. Or the Model 328 (and its British twin, the Frazer Nash) from the thirties, that established the brand’s racing reputation.
BMW Isetta 300, 1957
Post-war models like the 501 and 503 are just as much in evidence as the legendary Isetta compact car and representatives of the so-called “new class”, including as its centrepiece an elegant silver BMW 2000 CS Coupé from 1968 (see photograph). The selection goes all the way to include the M4 GTS from 2016 that can reach 100 in under four seconds.
Museum director Efe Uygur relies on the support of Standox.
But the KEY Museum isn’t limited to just one brand. “We select our exhibits based on their importance, value and uniqueness in vehicle and motorcycle history”, stresses Efe Uygur, curator of the museum.
130 cars and 40 motorcycles are currently on display, beginning with an authentic replica of Gottlieb Daimler’s “Reitwagen” (1885) and Carl Benz’s motor car (1886), through to carriage-like vehicles from the turn of the century and the dream cars of the thirties and forties, with their generously curved wings, to the ultra-slim Italian sports cars of today.
BMWs are especially popular in the KEY Museum - from the Dixi to the super sports car M4 GTS.
Spectacularly staged: an orange Lamborghini Diablo from 1991.
Eye-catcher especially for the kids: the Batmobile, as it was to be seen in a TV series of the 60s.
Extensive paint restoration
All the vehicles on display in Torbalı are in first-class technical and visual condition. The museum sets great store by this, and invests accordingly.
Fifteen employees, all qualified specialists, care for the vintage cars in the in-house workshop. “Every car that leaves our workshop must look like it did on the day it was built”, Uygur says. This applies especially to the paint job. "We always strive to match the original colour of the vehicle.”
This isn't always easy: faded or weathered paint, deviations from standard factory paint jobs and attempts to match the original paint or repainting make the task difficult.
The museum normally researches the original manufacturer’s documents. “But acquiring these documents is a very complicated business,” Uygur explains.
“Especially in the case of vehicles from the first half of the twentieth century, many documents have been lost.” Like a 1925 Renault 40 CV that the museum wanted to restore. “A particularly expensive and time-consuming project”, Efe Uygur recalls. “But we were very pleased with the results.”
Standox supplies paint and know-how
When there are no more documents to be found, you have to find some other way to cope. And the painters from Torbalı regularly turn to Standox for this.
The paint provider doesn’t just supply paint, but precise data on original historical colour tones for many car manufacturers, thanks to a well-stocked colour database.
In other cases, the painters utilise the capabilities of modern painting technology. Uygur: “Whenever we find a spot on a vintage car with the original paint, we use it to reconstruct a colour. The Standox Genius spectrophotometer is a very helpful tool for this.”
Modern products are also used in painting. “We use Standox exclusively in our shop, for example with the VOC System Filler, Standox Basecoat and Standocryl VOC Xtra-Clear Paint”, Uygur explains.
The decisive factor is not just the premium quality of Standox products, but also the good service they provide. Our colleagues at Standox have often helped us to match an old colour”, Uygur says. “And they also support us in the repair process.”
Technical data: BMW 2000 CS Coupé
|water-cooled four-cylinder inline
||88 KW / 120 hp
|Acceleration 0-100 km/h
|Length x width x height
||4530 x 1675 x 1360 mm