It was the 37th consecutive year yet that the Paris Retromobile show was organised. This year the organiser event booked more space. And the public liked it, over 90.000 visitors from all over the world gathered to see the stands of over 350 exhibitors. It becomes clearer and clear every year, the Paris Retromobile Show is the first BIG classic car event in Europe, and the public enjoys it after a long and cold winter without too much events.
One of the promised highlights of the Retromobile was the presence of the Mullin Museum, one of the 10 largest car collections in the world, and completely dedicated to french cars. The California based museum brought 10 of their most important cars to Paris, including the Bugatti 57SC Atlantic, several Delahayes, some Hispano-Suiza cars and not to forget the Talbot Lago ype T26 Grand Sport 1947. Every vintage car lover heard of this cars, few have seen one of them. Well Paris Retromobile was a great occasion to admire no less than 10 of these great exemples of the french coach building art from the 1930-1940s.
Probably most of the Porsche lovers knew the Peter Auto stand would have the restored Porsche 917-021 on display. And it looked fabulous with its surrealistic colors. The owner , Vincent Gaye, who intends to race the car at the Le Mans Classic and Spa Classic, can really be proud of what he achieved with this no-costs spared restoration. Absolutely great!!.
One of my personal highlights of the Paris Retromobile was the Porsche 550-0131. Not only is the Porsche 550 Spyder one of my favourite Porsches, this car was even more spectacular for me, as it was raced on several occasions by Richard von Frankenberg, whom I admire a lot. Next to von Frankenberg, several other Porsche personalities like Wolfgang Graf Berge von Trips and Edgar Barth raced this car in several important races. The car was in a unrestored condition , with lots of scratches and so on. But that makes it even easier to imagine how this car was used back in the fifties. Lovely, and I hope this car will find a great new home. The same dealer had a barn find Ferrari, and some unrestored Ferraris and Maseratis for sale too.
Several Porsches were auctioned at the Artcurial auction, some of them achieving high but not unexpected prices, like the 1954 Porsche 356 pre A Coupe wich hammered down for 148.920 Euro, or the 1958 Porsche 356 A Cab wich sold for 113.179 Euro. The 1971 Porsche ST recreation based on a Porsche 911S and the 1972 Porsche 911L , converted into a Porsche 3.0 RS prooved what I noticed in other auctions. They remained unsold, which proves that the true collectors prefer the real deal, over spending their valuable money on replicas or reproductions.
Collectors of automobilia ofcourse knew what to do too, with lots of vendors of literature, toys, watches and so on. I really loved the show, and I'm looking forward to the next year's edition. And I hope to see you there !!
Text : Tim Havermans
Pictures : Liebe zu Ihm