Gasoline Juice: Inside the new car culture hot spot created by a former Jaguar designer

by Nik Berg
17 February 2023 2 min read
Gasoline Juice: Inside the new car culture hot spot created by a former Jaguar designer
Photos: Nik Berg

“Gasoline is the juice that fuels our passion,” says Cesar Pieri. The former Jaguar designer is standing next to a wingless Cesna aircraft in a stylish garage-meets-art gallery of his own making that he has named Gasoline Juice. It takes cars and coffee in an unexpected, and entirely likeable, direction.

There’s a fuel pump, a couple of custom motorcycles and Pieri’s Fiat 124 Spider parked carefully alongside vintage leather sofas and an upright piano, with more aircraft parts hanging from the rafters. On the walls are British, American and Brazilian flags – the latter his homeland – and Pieri’s own artwork on various parts of the Jaguar Project Seven he designed. (In case you don’t remember, the Project Seven was launched in 2015 as an ultra-hot, 567bhp, limited edition version of the F-Type sports car.) These pieces all chart Pieri’s professional journey from his home to the US and the UK where he has set up his independent design consultancy Pieri Design.

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It was while looking for a suitable studio space that he came across the former Royal Ordnance Depot in Weedon Bec, near Northampton. The site dates back to the Napoleonic Wars when it was used to house Britain’s arsenal of cannon and small arms, but now its canal-side warehouses are given over to antiques, a yoga studio and more than a few automotive businesses.

Gasoline Juice: Inside the new car culture hot spot created by a former Jaguar designer

Pieri has reserved about a third of his unit for his design studio with rest being the gallery space that he put together by hand.

“I wanted to create an automotive hub where you can find artworks, have events, meetings, and all sorts of different car related stuff,” he explains when we visit. “I’ve always done artwork, and I’ve been designing since 20 years ago. These things have coexisted for a long time. So I thought that now was the time to celebrate it all, and get them together with this space.”

During his time in the USA Pieri amassed all manner of auto and aeronautical pieces, which he shipped to the UK in a 40-foot container. Gasoline Juice finally gave him the chance to display them and act as a showcase for his artwork and the creations of others.

Working with curator and editor Renata Fernandes who devised the annual Sleeping with Art show, the goal is to use the space to host automotive art exhibits and occasional car meets, such as those organized by Lewis Warren of Takona to drive mental health awareness.

With ample parking on site and arrangements in place for local coffee, food trucks and a brewery to provide catering Gasoline Juice joins a growing number of cool car community hangouts such as Stratford upon Avon’s Caffeine & Machine, Fuel Coffee House near Brighton, London’s Ace Café and the soon-to-open Hagerty Club House at Bicester Heritage.

As far as we’re concerned, the more places we can meet like-minded car enthusiasts, the better. The great thing about Pieri’s venue is that it offers a few unexpected twists and turns that make it worth the drive.

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