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Arizona Concours D’Elegance Shuts Down

Arizona Concours D’Elegance

Last month the Arizona Concours D’Elegance regretfully announced that after a successful four year run, they were discontinuing the show. Held at the beginning of Arizona Auction week in January on the grounds of the Arizona Biltmore, they drew a diverse collection of cars, in unique classes. The grounds at the Biltmore made for a great background for those cars too.

Arizona Concours D’Elegance Accomplishments

Over the years we’ve covered the event and met a great group of car owners and volunteers. The show was able to raise over $300,000 for their designated charity, Make A Wish. So in many measures it was a success. But without support from sponsoring companies with deep pockets, the organizing board opted to shut down the show.

Here are some links to previous coverage

2017 Coverage

2016 Winners and More Coverage in 2016

2015 Coverage

Arizona Auction Week

Arizona Auction Week will be held next year from January 14-21, 2018. Last year seven different companies had auctions in the area. It is hard to imagine but over $260 million of dollars traded hands in one week; buying and selling American and imported metal and fiberglass, with nearly 3,500 vehicles available to buy. These Arizona auctions are highly anticipated; setting the tone for the classic car market for the year.

Here is the text of the board’s notice –

Thank you

We are humbled by the critical acclaim bestowed upon the Arizona Concours d’Elegance over the past four years by the public, the media and our participants. However, the long-term success of events such as the Arizona Concours is built on sustained corporate support. Although the event has been a critical success, it unfortunately has not established the financial foundation necessary to support it sustainably into the future.

There will not be a 2018 Arizona Concours d”Elegance.

Our sincerest gratitude goes to the dedicated Concours Committee, many faithful volunteers, our wonderful entrants and judges, as well as numerous sponsors.

We thank every one of those who have supported us with your investment of time, talent, enthusiasm and resources. You all have been directly responsible for raising more than $300,000 for Make-A-Wish® Arizona, enabling the granting of more than 30 wishes for young people who face the most serious of life’s challenges.

“In the beginning, we set out to achieve a word-class Concours and an event that would positively impact the lives of children in need. The group of people responsible for the Arizona Concours take great pride in what has been achieved and we thank all of those who worked so hard to make this, our dream, a reality. As Dr. Seuss said, ‘Don’t cry because it is ending…be happy because it happened!’” Kevin Cornish, executive director of the Arizona Concours

 

 

Arizona will miss all of your efforts and benefits

 

 

Bugatti Type 57SC Wins Arizona Concours d’Elegance

To the surprise of few, a 1936 Bugatti Type 57SC Atlantic, won the “Best of Show” honors Sunday at the 4th annual Arizona Concours d’Elegance held at the Arizona Biltmore Resort on Sunday January, 15, 2017.Bugatti Front Fender

Bugatti Wins Best of Show

To win best of show, the car first took the honors for its class – The cars of Ettore and Jean Bugatti.  Then the four top class winners were judged again for the Best of Show Award.

The low slung car, capable of a top speed of 122 MPH with a an inline eight cylinder engine with less than 200 ci is quite unique with the body seams joined at flanges by rivets.  Originally it was thought that this prototype used the rivets as the metal ( a blend of magnesium and aluminum) is difficult to weld.  Perhaps the builder was so taken with the effect that he needed up using the same process on the three Atlantic cars built on this design.  This car was originally owned by Lord Victor Rothschild. It later had a supercharger added and it was imported to the states by 1946.Bugatti Rivets on Roofline

Bugatti Background

The car had recently been seen at Los Angeles’ Petersen Museum, but normally is on display at the Mullin Automotive Museum, which makes sense since Peter and Merle Mullin, Bugatti aficionados, are part owners of the car, along with Rob and Melani Walton (from the Wal-Mart clan).  The car has won at other showings, including best of Show at the Pebble Beach Concours in 2003.  The joint owners paid $36 million for the Bugatti.  A different Type 57SC is owned by Ralph Lauren.Bugatti

Arizona Concours d’Elegance

 The entry field consisted of ninety cars, entered in seventeen classes.  The grassy lawn of the palatial Arizona Biltmore was the perfect spot for the show and the proceeds from the show go to Make A Wish of Arizona.  The Arizona Concours d’Elegance kicks off a week of classic car auctions in the Phoenix, AZ region.  In a future article we’ll highlight some of our favorite builds and award winners.  So be sure and sign up so you won’t miss the next article?

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Alumatub by Boyd Coddington Sells at Barrett-Jackson

Alumatub, Boyd Coddington’s third all aluminum build sells at the Barrett-Jackson auction this week.  This was the third in a series of aluminum bodied customs that Coddington produced.  The top can come off to allow for a roadster feel. Alumatub Passenger Side

Alumatub Specs

This one is powered by a Chevy small block 350 and sends power to the back through a Chevrolet TH350 transmission with a quick change rear end.  The body work was done by famed master Marcel‘s Custom Metal and is hard to believe this was hand formed and not stamped out on a press.  Our friends at Hot Rod sure loved it.Alumatub Driver's Side

Alumatub Build

This hand crafted Boyd Coddington build was showcased on his TV show, “American Hot Rod” TV series which can still be seen on the Discovery Channel. After Coddington’s untimely death, it was thought that his builds would increase in value as his output was now finalized. Alumatub Rear End

Alumatub Prices

Alumatub first sold at Barrett-Jackson in 2005 to Ron Pratte with a listed price, including commissions, of $170,500.  He sold it ten years later for $187,000 in 2015.  The current owner is selling this year and it’ll be interesting to see what it sells for.

Any guesses?

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Wes Rydell’s 1940 Oldsmobile “Agnes”

1940 Oldsmobile Front viewWes and Vivian Rydell have commissioned some great classic cars over the years.  Earlier this year at the Del Mar Goodguy’s show, their 1940 Oldsmobile “Agnes” was selected for the 2016 Street Rod d’Elegance  Award.1940 Oldsmobile Hood Up

1940 Oldsmobile

This rod had languished for a spell before finally being completed by Rad Rides by Troy.  We took these shots when they displayed it in Scottsdale, AZ at the Spring National Goodguy’s Show. They have won this award twice before, including in 2014 with their controversial 1935 Chevy Phaeton.1940 Oldsmobile Right Side

Madame X

Now we can’t wait for the 2016 SEMA Show, where they will be unveiling “Madame X”, a 1939 Cadillac coupe.  It is a takeoff on a concept design based on a 1935 Cadillac 60 Special Sedan originally designed by GM stylist Art Ross. So this car was never built until Chip Foose opted to take on the build.

SEMA 2016

Of all the unveilings scheduled during the SEMA Show, this is the most anticipated with some sneak peeks offered recently.  Can’t wait to see it in person on Tuesday!

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Classic Car- Drive it or Store it?

2003 Corvette Front EndIt is a continuing dilemma for the classic car market.  You run across a collectible car with ridiculously low mileage.  The car owner may even be asking for a premium for such a low mileage beauty.  The car probably comes with every artifact that came from the factory.  But here is the dilemma.  Do you buy the car and continue to keep it in storage and keep the odometer from rolling up? Or do you say the car was meant to be driven and keep the pedal to the metal, as the numbers on the odometer tick up?

There is an adage in collector car circles, that a car can only be original once.  Similarly the car can only have that low odometer reading once too.  Some fans will argue that to appreciate the car it needs to be driven and enjoyed.  But they acknowledge that by doing so, the value will tank. Others will argue it can be enjoyed while staying intact in the garage.  What to do?

This 2003 Corvette is a perfect example of this conundrum.  The first owner appears to have taken exceptional care of this stored classic.  He says he started the car every couple of months to circulate the fluids and moved the car every 4-6 months, to avoid flat spotting the tires.  He has all the marketing materials and even kept the interior lined in the factory plastic protective wrap. His “Buy It Now” price of $44,900 certainly is a premium to other models that sell with loads more miles showing.

The 2003 Corvette marked the 50th anniversary of the iconic nameplate and was highly sought after.   There is even a registry just for these cars. List price was probably over $56,000 and some dealers were aggressive in marking up these 50th Anniversary Editions.  11,632 of these Anniversary Red metallic C-5’s were made and occasionally you can find one with less than 20,000 miles; but this convertible has only 57 original miles!

So do you buy it and start driving it? After all the posting does say – “Drive it home if you want. It’s ready to go.”  Or maintain it as is, and keep the low miles?

Let us know what you would do if you were the new owner.

Please note images in this post is NOT the car for sale

Silver leaf-a new use

You probably have seen a car, typically a classic, with some gold leafing. You know the look! It is a muddled gold look that still radiates and sparkles. Sometimes painters will use silver leaf for the same look.silver leaf

Well New York artist Dove Bradshaw has come up with a new way to use silver leaf as an art medium. She put silver leaf on a museum wall and has let it stay exposed to the elements. So over time and exposure to the elements, it should change it’s appearance.Art work silver leaf

Now we’ll leave it to our readers to say whether it is art or not. But if you can put it on a car, why not a museum wall? You can check out the artwork information from the Phillips Collection here.

 

Arizona Concours d’Elegance – More Classic Winners

As promised here are some more award winners, focused on Detroit born, from the Arizona Concours d’Elegance. This event was held last month on the grounds of the Biltmore Hotel and helped kick off an eventful week of car auctions in the Phoenix, Arizona region. Glad to see this event helps raise money for a great cause as well.

At this show was an entry from Gordon Apker, a noted classic car collector, who unfortunately died recently and was mentioned here. We’ll miss this class act and a knowledgeable classic car enthusiast.

1933 Auburn Boat Tail Speedster – Arizona Concours d’Elegance Winner1933 Auburn Boat Tail

I just love this marquee and the boat tail is instantly recognizable among classic car fans. The paint scheme on this is just eye catching. This Auburn won a Frank Lloyd Wright School of Architecture Award. The car is a 12-165 Salon Model. Even back then, cars came with over drive like this beauty!

1957 Chevy Bel Air – Arizona Concours d’Elegance Winner1957 Chevy Front View

I wasn’t expecting to see this classic at the Concours, let alone win second for the Post -War American class. It is a traditional convertible and it was freshly restored. Popular paint choice and neat power plant motored this baby along.

1963 Chrysler 3001963 Chrysler 300 Close Up

I was surprised that this didn’t win an award, especially with the focus on the 100th anniversary of the Indianapolis 500. But nevertheless it was brought out from the Martin Museum and was originally offered by Chrysler to commemorate the 62 Indy Pace Car honors. Our friends at Old Cars Weekly recently featured a similar car as their car of the week.

1937 Cord – Arizona Concours d’Elegance Winner1937 Cord Front View

Speaking of Auburns, it makes it hard to ignore this Cord. This Westchester is a rare, low production model and was one of the last made before the Auburn Automobile Company closed down in late 1937.

Hope you enjoyed this review. Which was your favorite?

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