Sunday, April 23, 2017
Concours d’Elegance of Texas • 9am to 4:30pm
Richard Greene Linear Park · 1601 E Randol Mill Road, Arlington, Texas 76011
Richard Greene Linear Park
Now in year six and its inaugural season in Arlington, The Concours d’Elegance of Texas will features 125 of the finest motorcars in America. Many of these cars are seldom seen publicly, with many being one-off creations by legendary automotive designers. This is an opportunity to see mechanical sophistication, elegance, and the best in automotive style. The Concours d’Elegance of Texas bill it’s “The Family Concours” with children of all ages welcomed to view these automotive sculptures and learn about the history of the automobile. Best of all the Concours is a registered 501C3 non-profit that supports some great charities:
- Make a Wish Foundation of North Texas
- River Legacy Foundation
- Holy Angels Residential Facility
- Next Gen Education Program
A world-class gathering of selected vintage motorcars will gather on Sunday in a glorious lakeside setting overlooking the Caelum Moor Sculptures. With a lake on its north side, Rangers Ballpark to the east and AT&T Stadium to the west, Richard Greene Linear Park owes its essence as a green way in the middle of Arlington’s famous entertainment district to the Johnson Creek Ecosystem Restoration project. The project, which includes a creek restoration, stream bank stabilization, development of a two mile hike and bike trail, and ecosystem enhancements, was such a success that it not only won a National Park Design Award by the National Recreation and Park Association; it was selected as the site for the Caelum Moor Environmental Sculptures.
There are some truly amazing cars on tap for the discerning automobilist. I’ve shown a few of my favorites below, including three surprising examples from Nissan’s Factory Heritage Collection.
1934 Cadillac Sixteen Custom Roadster
This beautiful Series 452-D has a 452 cu. in. overhead valve V-16 engine of a mere 185 bhp….Many think a V16, should be snorting beast, but Cadillac’s goal was vastly different in the development of the V16. The goal was absolute smoothness and incredible torque. Frequent up and down shifts in those pre-automatic transmission days was quite an annoyance. The monsterous torque of the V16 allowed the driver to slow to a near walking pace in third gear, and then accelerate away smoothly without the bother of a downshift. There is no disputing the beauty of this stunning car.
1937 Bugatti Type 57C Atalante ‘Roll Back’
In the modern world, the name “Bugatti” conjures up images of a highly technologically advanced hyper-car. During the time of Ettore Bugatti’s the imagery was very different, but no less sophisticated for the day. With Coachwork by Gangloff and, one of only Three known to exist, this Bugatti Atalante is considered by classic car enthusiasts to be one of the most beautiful automobiles ever constructed. Bugatti the man was obsessed with getting every detail of his creations as close to perfection as possible. As a testament to the man’s obsession, every part and piece of vintage Bugatti can be displayed individually as mechanical artwork.
1933 Lincoln Brougham V-12
This stunning Lincoln Town Car Landaulette Cabriolet features Custom Coachwork by, BRUNN. During the heyday of the classic era of the 1930’s the moneyed simply didn’t go to a dealer and do something as gauche as “buy off the rack.” Rather one purchased a sophisticated chassis such as this Lincoln V12, and then sent it to a body builder of one’s choice where the final creation was as custom as a Savile Row suit. The term “Town Car” denotes an open chauffeurs compartment, and closed quarters for the Master and Mistress.
1967 Lamborghini Miura P400
Lamborghini’s first Super Car and the fastest production car of its time. This the 54th Miura produced is finished in my absolute favorite color of Pistachio. When I was a wee lad of Wee-Wisdom (kindergarten) age I was given a Lesney Matchbox Muira, which is likely as close as I’ll ever get to owning the real thing. A few years ago, at a Concour event I related this same story to a Muira owner who proudly stated he got the Matchbox one too, and then the real deal about 40 year later, lol.
1934 Packard 1108 Convertible Victoria
This stunning Best of Show Winner at Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance features one-off coachwork by Dietrich. Packard used to have the best advertising slogan in the business as they confidently stated, “Ask the man who owns one.” Can’t you just imagine some Hollywood Screen idol pulling up to the Red Carpet at Grauman’s Chinese with a platinum blonde riding shotgun after a quick dinner at The Brown Derby?
1934 Rolls-Royce Phantom II Continental Roadster
With one-off coachwork by Thrupp & Maberly this Rolls is a former best in class winner at Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance. “Continental” examples were conceived for a high-speed touring on the European continent. Most contemporary Rolls Royces were often long black limousines, or staid formal sedans. The low-slung windshield and the sporty rake of the doors further attest to the sporting intentions of this PII Continental Roadster.
1946 Chrysler Town & Country Convertible
Want to know why Woody’s of all stripes are so valuable today? Termites! Well actually, it is a bit more complicated than that. When exposed to the elements wood requires careful maintenance and refinishing every few years. Many owners didn’t bother, so within a few years most Woody’s were very deteriorated. Many became dirt cheap, leading many to their popularity as surfer cars. This impeccably restored Chrysler demonstrates the beauty of these cars when new.
1960 Datsun 1200 Pickup (PLG221)
In 1958 the Datsun 220 truck was exhibited at the Los Angeles Auto Show, with American exports beginning soon after. It was the 220 series that established Datsun in the American market.
This Model 221 utilized same platform as the Datsun sedan of the day. The Datsun 221 went into production in October 1958 and finished in July 1959. In response to the American and Australian importers, a more powerful 1200 version was built for the export markets. Only about 346 of these trucks were sold in the USA.
1965 Datsun L320 Pickup
Produced from 1961-1965, the 320 Pickup represented the second generation of truck imported to the U.S. Although this this stylish little truck features a “60hp” badge on it’s fender, low 4.88 gearing made motoring above 60 mph impractical.
A torsion bar independent front suspension replaced the solid beam axle found on earlier models, and this is one of the first trucks to offer a 4-speed floor shift. About 5,500 320 Pickups were imported for Model Year 1965.
1972 Datsun 521 Pickup “Sweet Pea”
The Datsun 521 pickup was mechanically identical to the venerable 510 sedan, sharing powertrain and front end styling with the popular car. The 521 set the stage for Datsun’s major volume breakout in trucks with the 620 And 720 models to come gaining popularity with each upgrade.
Marvin Askew, who lives a short drive from Nissan’s headquarters in Franklin, Tennessee, purchased “Sweet Pea” from Hippodrome Datsun in Nashville, Tennessee on November 30, 1971 for the princely sum of $2,111. In over four decades of ownership, he put just over 150,000 miles on it. Marvin changed the oil every 2,000 miles, each change recorded in his maintenance log. Sweet Pea entered Nissan’s U.S. Heritage Collection in December 2015.
I have a bit of personal history with my sisters 510 she purchased new, and a friend’s 521 Datsun pick-up. In 1981 we used that sucker to move several tons of scrap oil-field pipe, a few sticks at a time. I recall we made more than twenty trips, and the little Datsun never hesitated. Nissan’s new Titan XD with the Cummins V8 elevates things to a level unimaginable in ’72. For us car guys there isn’t a much better rig to pull your car trailer.
1957 Buick Roadmaster Custom
This year the Concours d’Elegance of Texas has a “Custom Class” that will include some incredible custom creations. I’m interested do see this incredible 1957 Buick, built in season 3 of Reality Rides by Carl Meredith. This car has been featured in Hot Rod and featured custom flourishes everywhere you look, or in the parlance of the classic car world, “bespoke.” So yeah, a totally bespoke ’57 Roadmaster that would make the panel-beaters of the ‘30’s swoon with envy.
It’s going to be a great show, and yours-truly will be the announcer on Sunday. Come join us and see some beautiful cars in an equally beautiful setting and lets raise some money for some worthy causes.