Inside Hi-Tec Automotive’s journey to selling top Porsches

Written by Marqued Staff

Jun 2, 2022

They’re a local institution. Every small-ish town seems to have one—the specialty automotive shop on the corner that inevitably grabs your eye on every drive-by, monitoring which inventory has shuffled, who is getting their car serviced, all enticing you to pop your head in.

For 37 years, Hi-Tec Automotive has been one of San Rafael’s sweet spots for Porsche and Audi service and sales. Founded by Porsche factory trained mechanic Deven Wailes, they’ve built a reputation for fair shakes and great service as members of the Porsche community with deep involvement in the Porsche Club of America.

Deven began his Porsche career as a technician at Porsche Felton Audi, where he proudly drove the very first Porsche 928 off the truck into the showroom when they were being sold new. Later, his family actually owned a 928 which saw over 400,000 miles and became a point of expertise when he founded Hi-Tec.

Feature: Hi-Tec Feature: Hi-Tec

Since, he’s made a point to hire passionate, ‘enthusiast-first’ technicians who treat the cars they service like their own. Fellow factory trained Porsche mechanics, as well as Deven’s brother and air-cooled specialist Dana have joined him in providing mechanical expertise consummate with factory expectations. The results? Some really cool stories. Hi-Tec’s machinist Dave Bonbright made his bones doing the heads on the 356 SL Gmünd coupe that was the first-ever Porsche to race at Le Mans. The same mechanic who owns the very Hudson Hornet Paul Newman’s character was based on in the movie Cars, and was also interviewed and featured on Jay Leno’s Garage.

Feature: Hi-Tec Feature: Hi-Tec

After building rapport with clients focused on maintenance and service, incorporating sales was a natural next step, which is where Sales Manager Greg Maissen entered the picture about ten years ago. When asked about pairing reputable service with the showroom, Greg shares, “We enjoy maintaining and growing relationships from services to sales, and sales to service. We’ve always adhered to a high level of transparency—when we have a car that comes up for sale, we want everyone to know everything about it. We start with a PPI, where any outstanding maintenance that comes up is addressed. You’re buying a high quality car, in high quality condition—and we stand by that.”

Hi-Tec is currently representing a 1989 Porsche 911 Carrera Coupe in One-Year-Only Velvet Red Metallic for auction. “As we say in the Porsche Club of America, ‘it’s not about the cars, it’s about the people,’ and the story of this car, under Georgia’s (the owner) custodianship since 1997, has accomplished everything a Porsche is supposed to do. She’s driven it, enjoyed it, autocrossed it, ‘concours-ed’ it, and maintained it religiously. This ‘89 911 represents what air-cooled Porsche is all out—and is a great example of the emerging category of ‘collectible drivers’.”

Meet the caretaker

Hi-Tec was kind enough to also introduce us to Georgia, the current caretaker of the ‘89 911 who has owned the car since 1997. “I first found the car in a newspaper ad, which I circled and then called up the dealer who described the color combination as a ‘fine cabernet wine over cashmere’ and I was pretty much sold over the phone,” Georgia shares.

Feature: Hi-Tec Feature: Hi-Tec

The rest was history, and the car became her gateway into the Porsche passion, which grew from roadtrips, to autocross, to PCA events. “It became our roadtrip car, we took drives to Los Angeles and Sedona. I love how close you feel to the road, and especially living in Northern California with such great back roads. I hope the next owner will drive it, enjoy it, and continue to maintain it as we have over the past 25 years.”

Hi-Tec Automotive’s current listings on Marqued

Photographed by Frank Harrington

25-Years Owned 1989 Porsche 911 Carrera Coupe

Finished in Velvet Red Metallic over beige, this '89 911 marks the last model year of the G-body 911 with the 'G50' transmission, has been with its current Porsche Club of America caretaker since 1997, and is ready for its next chapter.

More about Hi-Tec Automotive

You can learn more about Hi-Tec Automotive by visiting their website and following them on Instagram (@hitecautomotive).

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