Concours of Elegance 2017: Opening this week
This Friday 1 September, the Concours of Elegance kicks off at Hampton Court Palace with more incredible cars and amazing features than ever before.
The main Concours display brings together nearly 70 of the rarest cars ever produced, this year including the 1928 Bentley 4.5-litre Victor Broom Drophead, which is one of only eight examples built. Originally manufactured in 1928, the car was purchased for £280 in 1962 by a teacher, Stuart Wallace, who quickly realised that he couldn’t afford to run it, so began a process of stripping and restoring it. However, he never finished the job and when he passed away, his daughter brought in specialists William Medcalf Vintage Bentley, who were tasked with preserving it. The trouble was Mr Wallace had spread parts of the car throughout the house – with an engine block found in the entrance hall, a clutch on the stairs, a headlight under the bed and components in the garden. William Medcalf tracked down all of these original parts and meticulously preserved the car.
Guests will also be able to see the Tatra 77, launched in March 1934, which is not only the world’s first series production aerodynamic design (the work of Paul Jaray, ex- Zeppelin), but it also featured plenty of other innovations. Most notable among them was the compact three-litre air-cooled V8 behind the rear axle to which used Elektron, a lightweight aviation magnesium for the crankcase and gearbox casing. Capable of nearly 90mph, the 77 was very quick for having just 60bhp, and very quiet thanks to its impeccable aerodynamics. This fine example was one of the first Tatra 77s in private ownership.
Outside of the main display, the Concours of Elegance 2017 will host a 60th anniversary celebration of Jaguar’s legendary 1-2-3-4-6 finish at the 1957 Le Mans 24 Hours race. All three podium finishers will drive in convoy, alongside two further Le Mans-raced D-types, into the grounds of Hampton Court Palace for the duration of this year’s Concours of Elegance.
Visitors will also be treated to a selection of the world’s most incredible modern supercars. Curated by founder of the YouTube channel of the same name and evo magazine, Harry Metcalfe, ‘Harry’s Garage’ will bring together models from Pagani, Koenigsegg, Lamborghini and more.
Among the line-up is the totally unique Koenigsegg Agera RS ‘Naraya’ With a body made of blue-tinted carbon fibre and highlighted by genuine 18ct gold leaf, both inside and out. With Koenigsegg’s 1160hp twin-turbo V8 underneath the bonnet, the ‘Naraya’ is one of the most powerful cars on the road.
A new central stage will be a focal point for the weekend, hosting moving displays of vehicles across the weekend, adding a new dynamic element, which brings more of the sights, sounds and smells of some of the most incredible cars ever produced to the guests of Concours of Elegance 2017.