You might not even notice it as you drive down North Pearl Street on the Northern end of downtown Albany if you weren’t paying attention, and that is how they like it. Tucked away on the corner of Tivoli Street in the old industrial neighborhood that once housed many textile mills and various warehouses is a former carriage house that once was home to the horse stables for Freihofer’s Bakery.
Today this building is home to a different type of horses, specifically the kind of horses that are kept under the hoods of all types of automobiles made in Germany. Rick Dobush bought the building in 1999 in order to house his expanding auto repair business. Not just any type of auto repair however, as suggested by the name of his shop, R&D Automotive: Bavarian Rocket Science focuses his expertise solely on the makes from Deutschland. While he admittedly prefers Porsches for the race track like his yellow #153 1973 Carrera RS, when it comes to daily drivers he feels nothing beats the quality of vehicles manufactured by Mercedes-Benz, as proven, much to his chagrin, by his trusted, daily driven work horse: a 1989 300E sedan with well over three hundred thousand on the mile counter. Other vehicles in his stable include a 1998 Audi A6 station wagon with nearly five hundred thousand miles, as well as a spritely BMW 528i barely broken in with just under ninety on her and a few other Porsche road and track project cars. With over 30 years of experience working with German cars, Rick is also well known for sharing his knowledge in various enthusiast circles.
In addition for nearly 20 years, he has been handing down his knowledge to his nephew, Tom Dobush. Tom now plays a management role at the shop after honing his skills while studying at RPI and working for companies such as Bentley Publishers and Porsche of Boston. Experts when it comes to restoration and preservation of the classics, like the beautiful early 80’s Mercedes-Benz 560 SL currently being freshened up or the classic 1962 Porsche 356 being brought back to life in the shop, to maintenance and repair of modern daily drivers that are becoming ever more sophisticated in our computer controlled world. If you would like to learn more about what the Dobush’s do at R&D Automotive: Bavarian Rocket Science give them a call, email or stop by and say hello, visitors are always welcome.