London’s premier classic car show

A Capital event second time around, London’s premier classic car show attracts 33,000 visitors the second annual London Classic Car Show, held at London’s ExCel Centre, has already evolved into an admirable celebration of classic and performance cars, and this year attracted more than 33,000 visitors. Its highlight was the Grand Avenue and Turning Circle Viewing Platform, where dozens of cars were seen and heard in action, ranging from thunderous vintage Bentleys, full works rally Audi Quattros and a shattering Matra F1 racer to the snarling Harrods Le Mans McLaren F1.

The show was officially opened by 2009 Formula 1 Champion Jenson Button arriving in a McLaren F1. Its designers, Gordon Murray and Peter Stevens, were also in attendance as the F1 supercar was celebrated with a very impressive seven-car display, curated by Murray.

There was a sprinkling of celebrities, including Sir Stirling Moss, Bruno Senna, rally champion Ari Vatanen and television presenter Suzi Perry on the mike at Speaker’s Corner. As well as the supercars and priceless classics (the collection of McLaren F1s was worth around £50 million alone!) on display and in motion, a second hall was full of displays by numerous classic car clubs, effectively doubling the show’s size and adding real-world interest. The clubs ranged from the Jaguar Drivers Club, the Bristol Owners Club, Quattro Owners Club and Aston Martin Owners Club to Porsche Club Great Britain.

Upmarket dealers, restorers and specialists packed the main hall with a wide range of vintage cars, classics and supercars; many had been sold by the Sunday. Meanwhile, the Six Nations Cup featured classic cars from the six leading car-producing nations and was won by Great Britain (voted for by show visitors), with Italy second and the US third ahead of Germany, France and Japan.

As official show sponsor, Octane had a stand celebrating the Evolution of the Supercar with six machines, from Lamborghini Miura via Countach, Ferrari F40, Bugatti EB110, Porsche 918 and Lord Pembroke’s gorgeous Bugatti Veyron, all of which attracted huge interest.