Jose Alas

Born in El Salvador, husband, father of 2 AMAZING kids, gear-head, faux mountain biker and ........To Be Continued!

My passion, since a young child, has been cars. I love everything about them, the speed, the noise, the lines, the engineering, the culture and most of all the lifelong friendships I’ve made because of these magnificent 4 wheeled machines.

One of my earliest memories growing up in Maryland was coming home from mass on Sunday and turning on motor racing.  Watching CART cars on TV was mesmerizing.  I’m not sure what it was that drew me to motor racing and fast cars but I loved it.  From there it progressed to R/C cars and to building my own wooden Porsche 911 model complete with whale-tail.  

A few years ago the old wooden toy model was traded in for the real thing. Since my very first car, a 1974 Fiat Spider, to my recently acquired 1992 Porsche 911, I have found ways of infusing my personality into each vehicle. I've enjoyed Audis, Hondas, Acuras, Jeeps and the goal has always been the same regardless of the platform; to make it mine, to enhance the driving characteristics and to make it visually appealing. In one word...clean

Do what makes you happy!  

These words ring clearer to me now more than ever before.  I’m excited to share my passion to help others achieve their automotive vision and enjoy the ride.

 

 

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OJAS PATEL

Lover of motoring vehicles, music, animals, our planet, design, the hustle, and the good life in Austin, TX. 

I’ve been a tinkerer for as long as I can remember. Some of my earliest memories involve discecting small pull-back or motorized toy cars, driven by my curiosity to understand how these magical machines worked.

I don’t know if four year-olds can have spiritual experiences, but I still remember the overwhelming awe when I’d catch a glimpse of the deus ex machina. As I grew up, I had an intense focus on the moment I'd get my drivers license and have my own car to customize and simply enjoy the freedom of driving.

I vividly remember reading about the soon-to-be-released supercar from Honda when I was a teenager. This was when Honda was at the top of their game. It’d be years before I’d come to know about Dieter Ram’s iconic 10 principles of good design. Hondas back then were the embodiment of what I felt was good design. At that time, our 1982 Honda Accord hatchback, approaching 200,000 miles, still served familial duties. It was such a good, well-designed, and fundamentally honest car. And the same guys who made that are building a supercar! I knew the NSX – Honda’s opus – was the one for me. My soulmate. 

This became my obsession, because I never felt I even had a choice in the matter. Financial and other barriers did not stand a chance.

The thing about being a tinkerer is that you tinker with everything. I convinced my parents to buy me an expensive computer (that we probably could not afford), and I became quite good at programming. In my junior year, I joined the computer team at my small high school in rural Kentucky and we ended up winning the state championship the following year.

This proved to be a formative experience and led me down a degree and career in software. I was extremely lucky. This profession was in incredibly high demand as the Internet was becoming mainstream. The pay was good, but for me it was always a proxy to get what I want…the cars. 

My dream came true in 1999 when I took delivery of my first NSX in 1999 – a Formula Red coupe. It was identical to what was debuted at the Chicago Auto Show in 1990. Everything about it exceeded even my lofty expecations. This car introduced me to a simply amazing community of other enthusiasts and took me to tracks in Japan to auto shows in Geneva.

I’ve been lucky to hone my craft in software engineering and witness first-hand how computers transformed from a nerdy curiosity to something that’s ubiquitous, interconnected, and essential to everyone.

However, the time has come to give my other obsession – automobiles – a turn at the wheel. And that’s why I joined forces with José to start Auto Dojo. I’m looking forward to sharing my drive and enjoying the journey with you.

 


@autodojo