Innovative antique: Lancia Lambda glows at Concorso Italiano

Part of the sea of Ferraris at Concorso Italiano | Bob Golfen photos
Part of the sea of Ferraris at Concorso Italiano | Bob Golfen photos

Amid all the streamlined fantasy cars at Concorso Italiano, Steve Peterson’s 1924 Lancia Lambda seemed an ancient relic, apparently the oldest vehicle by far at the celebration of everything on wheels from Italy held Saturday on the Monterey Peninsula.

The Lancia seems boxy and old-fashioned at first, but move in a little closer and the trim, handsome and low-profile styling sharpens into focus, and the technological brilliance becomes apparent. Continue reading

Thousands crowd into Carmel for Pebble Beach Tour d’Elegance

A 1913 Rolls-Royce Silver Ghost lead an  Aston Martin and Jaguar into Carmel-by-the Sea | Bob Golfen photos
A 1913 Rolls-Royce Silver Ghost leads an Aston Martin and Jaguar into Carmel-by-the Sea | Bob Golfen photos

Once a year, the picturesque and upscale village of Carmel-by-the-Sea becomes the absolute center of the known universe for collector car folks, and their friends, families and dogs. Usually a sleepy little burg where local folks and tourists come downtown to eat and shop, that all changes on the Thursday that the Pebble Beach Tour d’Elegance rolls into town.

The Pebble Tour, as it’s known, is the best deal on the Monterey Peninsula during car week, when most of the exceptional vintage cars from the greatest concours in America drive onto Ocean Avenue and park while the drivers and passengers stop for their catered lunch. Continue reading

Porsches reign but Ferrari wins at Carmel Concours

A fleet of Porsche 356 Speedsters attracts a crowd | Bob Golfen photos
A fleet of Porsche 356 Speedsters attracts a crowd | Bob Golfen photos

Porsches, Porsches everywhere. The booming popularity of nearly everybody’s favorite German sports car was powerfully evident Tuesday at the Concours on the Avenue in Carmel, California, an event considered to be the launch of Monterey Car Week.

Definitely the most-represented marque by far, Porsches packed the shady streets of the upscale burg – 911s by the score, including many intriguing customs and all-out race cars, plus an impressive collection of the earlier 356 models, with a gaggle of Speedsters, plenty of coupes and cabriolets, and an absolutely stunning 1951 356 coupe in dark maroon, a survivor from the early days of Porsche. Continue reading

Monterey’s incredible array of collector car events

A 1936 Pierce-Arrow 602 roadster rolls through the Pebble Beach Concours d'Elegance | Bob Golfen
A 1936 Pierce-Arrow 602 roadster rolls through the Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance | Bob Golfen

The week leading up to the Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance is so loaded up with car shows and concours that it’s nearly impossible to attend them all. A great problem to have, considering that each is pretty special and, with few exceptions, could be a standalone event anywhere else.

But Monterey Car Week is the great gathering of the collector car clan, and there is enough interest and participation to maintain this high level of events, and to make them some of the best in the country. Whatever the special niche of your collector car universe, there’s likely to be something here that will scratch that old-car itch. Continue reading

Worm in tequila bottle? Ha! This gin has Harley engine parts

Each gin bottles contains a Harley-Davidson motorcycle engine part | The Archeologist photo
Each gin bottles contains a Harley-Davidson motorcycle engine part | The Archeologist photo

Uwe Ehinger is a German who builds custom motorcycles, often recycling parts he has collected on his pilgrimages around the world to “remote garages, dilapidated scrapyards and dusty backyards for legendary lost two-wheeled relics.”

“Every time I make a find of rare bikes, I wonder how to use every single part — because they deserve to be preserved,” he says on a website that takes its name from Ehinger’s nickname, “The Archeologist.” Continue reading

F1 Ferrari, Indy Lotus among historic racers at Bonhams auction

The 1964 Lotus Type 34 is known as the winningest Indy Lotus of all time | Bonhams photos
The 1964 Lotus Type 34 is known as the winningest Indy Lotus of all time | Bonhams photos

Bonhams, which has dubbed its 2017 California auction “Year of the Race Cars,” has announced two more historic competition cars -– an F1 champion Ferrari and an Indy 500 Lotus –- to its docket for the 20th annual collector car sale at the Quail Lodge in Carmel during Monterey Car Week. Continue reading

Diverse Mecum auction in Denver hits $11.4 million in sales

A 1960 VW 23-window bus was the second-highest seller in Denver | Mecum Auctions photos
A 1960 VW 23-window bus was the second-highest seller in Denver | Mecum Auctions photos

In case you needed evidence that Mecum brings a diverse selection of collector cars to its auctions, just take a look at the five top sellers from the Denver sale last weekend.

The highest sale was that of a modern exotic, a 2016 Ferrari California T convertible sold for $165,000 (Mecum results do not include buyer fees). The Ferrari was followed by a vintage vehicle from the opposite end of the spectrum, a 1960 Volkswagen 23-window Samba microbus that went for $120,000. Continue reading

Italian cars, bikes from J Geils estate to be auctioned by Mecum

A 1961 Ferrari 250 GTE 2+2 is among the J Geils collection | Mecum Auctions photos
A 1961 Ferrari 250 GTE 2+2 is among the J Geils collection | Mecum Auctions photos

Just about everybody knows J Geils as the leader of the rock band that created such popular hits as Centerfold, Freeze Frame and Love Stinks. But not so many know that Geils, who died in April at 71, was a car guy who founded KTR Motorsports in Carlisle, Massachusetts, to service Ferraris and other mostly Italian exotics.

John “J” Geils also was an avid car collector who focused on his passion for Italian cars and motorcycles after the band broke up. In August, eight of the vehicles from his estate will be auctioned by Mecum at its sale in Monterey, California. Continue reading

Posters unveiled for Pebble Beach Concours, related events

The poster for the 2017 Pebble Beach Concour d'Elegance
The poster for the 2017 Pebble Beach Concour d’Elegance

The unveiling of the official posters for the Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance, Tour d’Elegance and RetroAuto are highly anticipated every year for their combination of fine art and fine classic cars.

For the three posters celebrating the 2017 events in California this August, artists Barry Rowe and Tim Layzell depicted a pair of historic Ferraris and a classic Isotta Fraschini set in the scenic seaside landscape of the Monterey Peninsula. Continue reading

Ferrari hits 70 with birthday party set for Pebble Beach Concours

A 1959 Ferrari 250 TR 59/60 Fantuzzi Spyder at the 2015 Pebble Beach Concours | Bob Golfen
A 1959 Ferrari 250 TR 59/60 Fantuzzi Spyder at the 2015 Pebble Beach Concours | Bob Golfen

Ferrari marks its 70th anniversary during 2017, and the North American celebration will be held in an appropriate location: the Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance in California.

Four classes of Ferraris will compete on the 18th fairway of the Pebble Beach Golf Links on Sunday, August 20, including special classes for Ferrari Major Race Winners and Ferrari One-Off Spéciales. At the same time as the Pebble Beach Concours, Ferrari North America will be hosting the Ferrari 70th Anniversary Concours, with more cars lined up on the golf course’s first fairway. Continue reading