Start-up stories: BTG Performance

Start-up stories: BTG Performance

What do you get when you cross a mechanic and a racing driver? A performance car garage! Jordan Smith explains.

Tell us about your business, what does it do?

We are a performance car garage providing prestige and performance car owners a quality alternative to main dealers. We offer servicing, repairs, diagnostics, 4WD rolling road tuning, power runs, custom remaps, upgrades, suspension set up, hunter wheel alignment and engine building. 

Our team are talented performance car technicians who are either factory or main dealer trained to deliver the highest quality work. Our state of the art 7,000 sqft workshop is fully insured and has 24 hour onsite security. We have a comfortable customer area with a TV, race simulator, refreshments and wi-fi. We're based just off the A19 in the Tyne tunnel trading estate, Newcastle Upon Tyne.  

What did you do before you started this business?

Lewis Couley and I became associates in 2013 when I started using the Lotus garage lewis managed to maintain one of my cars.

I have been building and tuning cars for motorsports for over 10 years and race myself. I’m currently preparing to race in the Time Attack UK series for 2018.


Lewis is a time served technician for Lotus and Ford motor company. He was trained at the lotus factory and was previously head technician for Lotus in the North.  Lewis is also passionate about motorsport and races at an amateur level.


What inspired you to start up?


We often discussed that there was a lack of performance car garages in the area and knew many people who were frustrated at having to travel a considerable distance to have work carried out on their performance cars. They both felt this could provide a great business opportunity. I was personally travelling to Blackburn and back to have work carried out on my cars as there wasn’t any suitable garages local.


How would you describe your business to your grandma?

We build, and maintain performance cars for the road and race track.


Where do you get advice, support or help?


Transmit Start-ups helped with both business planning and funding for the garage.



Finance is one of the most common barriers to starting up. How did you access the finance you needed?
As above.



What has been your biggest achievement so far?
Our biggest achievement so far must be all of the positive feedback we have had from happy customers. We’ve only been open a month a have already had 50+ positive reviews on our service.


How do you differentiate your business from others?
We have a motorsports background and apply that level of attention to detail to road cars also.
We have a 7,000 sqft workshop which is big enough to work on up to 15 cars at once meaning customers can be seen to quickly and not have to wait for weeks for space to become available. We offer a min dealer quality service but for a much lower price. We are also the only garage in Newcastle to have a 4 wheel drive rolling road to measure cars power and perform custom engine tuning.


What’s it like to be your own boss?
Hard work but rewarding. As we have been busy since launch neither me or my business partner have had a day off both working 7 days a week but being busy is a nice problem to have s we are not complaining!


Where do you see your business in 5 years time?
We plan on expanding into car sales in the near future and we are starting our own race team. We have experience working with electric and hybrid cars and are already working on tuning a hybrid demo car so we believe this will be a big part of our future.



What advice would you give to aspiring entrepreneurs?
Go for it!t