The second annual Arizona Concours d’Elegance, which will feature a special class dedicated to the Cars of Frank Lloyd Wright, has announced the entry for the January 11, 2015, event of a rare piece of motoring history from the intriguing life of the famed architect
The 1937 AC 16/80 “Ace” roadster that was owned and driven by Wright will make its post-restoration debut at the 2015 Arizona Concours after being out of the public eye for more than 40 years. A classic, upscale British sports car of the pre-war era, the AC will appear just as it did when owned by Wright, down to the signature Cherokee Red paint hue that the architect favored for nearly all of his cars.
The AC has a strong Arizona connection since it was used by Wright during winter stays at his Taliesin West home and architecture school in Scottsdale. He purchased the sports car in 1948 and immediately had it repainted Cherokee Red. Period photos show Wright with his wife, Olgivanna, bedecked in sporty fabric helmets and goggles enjoying the AC at Taliesin West.
The AC has been owned by a Texas couple since 1974, and it has been undergoing a total restoration for the past two years. The car is fully documented as the AC used by the architect and owned by the Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation through 1969.
The AC roadster will be among a collection of Wright’s most-interesting cars that will appear at the Arizona Concours at the historic Arizona Biltmore Resort. The Cars of Frank Lloyd Wright class was inspired by the architecture of the Arizona Biltmore, which was heavily influenced by Wright, who served as a consultant for the design of the Phoenix luxury hotel that opened in 1929.
The Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation has been an enthusiastic supporter of the efforts to bring together the class of his cars, and one of the special events for the 2015 Arizona Concours is a tour for concours entrants to Taliesin West the day after the concours.
Three other featured classes also are being organized for the 2015 Concours: pre-1965 competition Ferraris; classic American luxury brand Pierce-Arrow; and the cars of Carrozzeria Ghia, the Italian design house that celebrates its 100th anniversary during 2015.
The Arizona Concours also has determined the full class list for the 2015 show and competition, with 17 specialty classes for entries ranging from antique and full classic to sports cars and exotics.
The Arizona Concours d’Elegance benefits Make-A-Wish Arizona, the founding chapter of the national organization that grants wishes for children facing life-threatening medical conditions.
For tickets, vehicle entries and more information about the Arizona Concours d’Elegance, see www.ArizonaConcours.com.