Mean feat by motor men


Motor enthusiasts’ heaven: Mean Machines managing director Neville Friedman and founder Wenley Andrews in a Corvette Stingray 72. They are opening a cinema, bar and restaurant with a decidedly singular theme.  Picture: Andrew Ritchie        www.communitypix.com.au   d451136
Motor enthusiasts’ heaven: Mean Machines managing director Neville Friedman and founder Wenley Andrews in a Corvette Stingray 72. They are opening a cinema, bar and restaurant with a decidedly singular theme. Picture: Andrew Ritchie        www.communitypix.com.au d451136

But that’s just the start of a multi-million dollar project in Perth by two unlikely partners: a prominent lawyer and a motorcycle customising whiz nearly 40 years his junior.

Neville Friedman, of Dianella, and Wenley Andrews, of Mt Hawthorn, are the men behind Mean Machines, which will move from its current premises in Rudloc Road in Morley to a much more spacious site diagonally across the road later this year, where the Mean Machines Emporium will be housed.

“It really will be an emporium,” Mr Friedman says.

“Apart from exotic motorcycles and cars, we will have entertainment – a 112-seat cinema – plus weekend cabaret, a coffee shop, a restaurant and a retro furniture store. There will also be a moto-centric art gallery, with works from the celebrated Ashley Jones.”

More than a place for local enthusiasts, it has been two years in the making and could become an international drawcard.

Mr Andrews said securing a liquor license was the trickiest part of the process.

“When we started we had nothing; it took a good 10 months to find the most appropriate location. The City of Bayswater has been supportive,” he said.

Mr Friedman, a South African-born lawyer now semi-retired, sourced several of the cars from his home country.

They include a few VW Karmann Ghias, a Renault Caravelle, a VW Kombi, four Bertone X1-9s and several others, plus many more acquired in Australia and the US. Then there are the custom motorcycles, all unique creations by Mr Andrews (27), who arrived from Mauritius with his parents when he was eight.

His Mad Max machine figured among the world’s top five custom motorcycles, which immediately made him an international celebrity in the two-wheel world.

Like most of the others he built, the Mad Max runs on Triumph 900cc power.

Some have a lot of modified Harley-Davidson bits in their make-up and, like the cars, are all for sale.

The spectacular bikes with their stunning paint and engineering excellence each take about 300 hours to build and command prices in the vicinity of $50,000.

Mean Machines is operating now but its official opening will be later this year.