BEDFORD, Va. -

It's not a car you see on the road very often, but the Bricklin SV-1 has some big fans in Bedford County.

"Everything about it is cool," said John Lodge, a car enthusiast who lives in Bedford.

Bricklin, a Canadian sports car with gull-wing doors, was only in production for two years in the mid-1970's.

Terry Tanner was the company's manager of engineering.

"There is nothing paralleling it in the industry, then or now," said Tanner, who loves the Bricklin so much that he's been repairing and restoring the vehicle for almost 40 years.

"If you can make a living doing what you love, there can't be a better deal than that," Tanner said.

His business, Bricklin Parts of Virginia, is a full-service repair operation located near Route 460.  It's a small shop with a client list that spans the globe.

"We've got customers in New Zealand, the Philippines, Germany, and France," said Lodge, who works for Tanner as his shop supervisor.

Bricklin owners come to Bedford for one reason: Tanner has almost every part they need.

After Bricklin went bankrupt in 1976, Tanner bought every piece of the car he could find.

"Over the years, wherever any parts showed up that were appropriate for the car, I bought them," Tanner explained.

He built up the world's single largest collection of unused Bricklin parts.  Tanner and Lodge work on around six vehicles every year.

"I'm the only one in the world that does what I do, to the level that I do it," Lodge said.

Like any rare item, the parts are starting to out.  Tanner and Lodge are now forced to make modifications.

"We do that because we have to, to let the car be alive," Tanner said.

They refuse to change too much, because they believe the original was perfect.

Bricklin, they say, didn't go out of business because the car wasn't popular.  They say it was mismanagement of the company that forced the vehicle out of production.

Many of the 2,800 Bricklins that were made are still on the road today.

"That ain't bad for a 40-year-old car," said Tanner.

Thanks to Tanner's collection of parts, the Bricklin is proving that a car can live on, long after the company shuts down.