About Classic Importsin New Buffalo, MI

Honest, Exceptional Auto Repair & Service

My name is Mikail Pinette. I came into this profession honestly… Let me explain. My father and my father's father were both in the auto profession before me. My grandfather had an auto dealership in the 1920's and 1930's. My father used to race Hudsons and after he returned from Europe (World War II) he opened up his own repair shop.

Before I was even born, my father was collecting Hudsons and working on them. By the time I became old enough to go to school, my family moved to Alaska. My father worked on vehicles, heavy equipment, and airplanes, and I started in high school doing the same. I worked at the airbase motor pool for my sophomore and junior years, in an apprenticeship.

During my senior year, I worked for an air charter company called Peninsula Airways. They had a fleet of over 20 prop engine aircraft all ranging from single engine, twin engine, wheeled, amphibious landing, etc. I apprenticed under highly skilled airframe and power plant technicians.

During this time, I watched and helped my father with his projects as much as possible. When I graduated high school, I took a job with the U.S. National Park Service for three years, maintaining all of their vehicles and boats used at the camp.

In 1981, I moved to Michigan and started my career repairing import cars in St. Joseph, Michigan. From there I moved to South Bend, Indiana and for many years I worked for several dealerships, advancing to Mercedes Benz technician.

In 1990, the economy dipped into a prolonged recession, and work was thin at the Mercedes dealership. I started my own repair shop, Classic Imports, in late 1990 in Berrien Springs, out of my garage. Within a year, I moved the business to Union Pier, Michigan. I was slowly growing until I took classes from Mike Lee, who taught me the business side of running an auto repair business. This changed my entire operation into what has now become—one of the most professional auto repair facilities in the area.

The main areas I have always focused on are:

  • Honesty
  • My clients’ needs
  • Advancing technology

I keep training, quality, and personal service as my top priorities. We are a family-owned and operated business and hire only high-quality, professional employees. Our clients have responded with wondrous praise to our efforts. Just take a look at all of our testimonials and you'll see for yourself...

Customer Reviews

Our Goals

  1. To become the premier auto repair facility in the tri-county area
  2. To provide the highest level of customer service
  3. To have the most courteous and knowledgeable staff
  4. To have the cleanest, most modern-equipped facility
  5. To provide the highest quality parts at a fair price
  6. To exceed our customers’ expectations
  7. To educate our customers about their vehicles, creating loyal clients

Meet Our Expert Auto Repair Crew

Mikail Pinette

Owner of Classic Imports, Inc., ASE Master Automobile Technician, ASE Advanced Level Specialist, ASE Machinist, ASE Collision Repair, Michigan State Master Auto Mechanic license plus pre-1973 vehicle and Michigan State Collision Repair and Structural Mechanical Repair license.

Brandon Pinette

Shop Foreman, ASE Master Automobile Technician, Bosch Master Technician, Michigan State Master Auto Mechanic license (has been a Michigan state licensed technician since he was 14), shop foreman and son of Mikail and Renee Pinette. Brandon is the father of 2 children, ages 9 and 13, and enjoys spending time with his family, horseback riding and many other outdoor activities.

Renee Pinette

Owner, accountant, management, office manager, records, marketing, assistant shuttle driver, resident IT person. Before coming full time with Classic Imports, Renee owned her own small business accounting service. As the shop grew, demanding more time and energy, she found others to take over the accounts so she could focus on the needs of Classic Imports. Renee enjoys spending time with her family, gardening, Bible study and church family activities.

Sean Collins



Service Writer.