For lovers of history, heritage, celebrity, controversy and oh yes, cars, the perfect event is heading your way in London this week. Kicking off this Thursday, the London Classic Car Show will run at the ExCel in Royal Victoria Dock until Sunday 21st February.
The opening will see well-known faces from the world of motoring in attendance. Jenson Button, the 2009 F1 champion, will join host Suzi Perry for the first day while Rally legend Ari Vatanen is scheduled to open the show on Friday.
One of the highlights of the show will see a four-day debate aiming to determine ‘which nation has produced the world’s best cars’. To bring the debate to life, ten exceptional cars have been selected to represent the British, French, German, Italian, Japanese and US motor industries. Thursday night’s opening ceremony will be the only time visitors will see all six teams together. Thereafter the nations will be pitched into head-to-head heats on Friday and Saturday building up to a grand finale on Sunday afternoon.
While the presenters will open the debate, ultimately it will be up to those in attendance to make the final decision. With over 30,000 expected to attend, this could be the biggest ever poll to answer the question: ‘where do the best cars come from?’
Other highlights will include a tribute to the McLaren F1 motor car. Five F1s will be displayed (worth a combined £50 million) plus many other items related to the birth of the last road car to win Le Mans.
And if supercars are your thing, their evolution is traced and demonstrated through, amongst others, the likes of a Ferrari F40, a Jaguar XJ220 and a Porsche 918 Spyder.
Classic cars clubs will have displays around their favoured marques. Among those represented are Aston Martin, Jensen, Mercedes-Benz, Jaguar, Bristol, Gordon-Keeble, Audi, BMW and Chevrolet. Indeed the Aston Martin Owners’ Club display includes one of two original Mark II 4-seaters from 1935 plus the 1970 DBS as used by Roger Moore and Tony Curtis in the TV series The Persuaders.
Stroll down Memory Lane (quite literally) and there you will have the opportunity to buy affordable classics from dealers and private sellers. Amongst the offerings will be a Daimler once owned by Sir Winston Churchill and a Jensen Interceptor owned by Eric Morecombe.