The Classic Auto Show brought over 1,000 vehicles to the LA Convention Center this past weekend. Most every classic vehicle niche was celebrated, including domestic and foreign manufactures. Amid the glitz and glam were hot rods, lowriders, vintage racecars, off-road vehicles, and Japanese, British, French and Italian classics. Our necks are still sore from the rubber necking caused by the eye-candy overload that forced us to spin around every-which way in amazement.
Smack dab in the center of the upper level was a row of glorious Lowriders, which continued to the back of the building as far as the eye could see. The urge to bow down to the meticulous details and obvious passion for artistry was irresistible. Every click of the camera shutter was followed by sighs of wonderment.
The Ford Thunderbird “Star Car,” a Michael Jackson tribute drew a large crowd. Fans couldn’t help but bust out their version of the moonwalk to the booming soundtrack.
History At Its Finest
The Peterson Automotive Museum brought pieces of history to the show, such as this flathead V-8 1932 Ford Phaeton. You may not recognize it at first glance, but this is the car that appeared in Van Halen’s 1984 music video, Hot For Teacher.
Gypsy Rose, a legend that now resides in the Peterson Automotive Museum, was parked on the outskirts of the lowriders. Jesse Valdez, the president of The Imperials lowrider club, designed the original in 1960. It was inspired by a famous burlesque singer. This is the third rendition, and approximately 150 hand-painted roses adorn the glasslike exterior.
When Different Cultures Collide
This isn’t just any 1940 Ford Deluxe Station Wagon. The innocent exterior is derived from 90-percent original wood, but under the hood is an LS-1 engine with Inglese eight-stack fuel injection mated to a 700R transmission. It has all of the creature comforts you’d expect from a resto-mod and plenty of get-up-and-go to hit the beaches faster.
Adding to the diverse mix, the show presented an impressive selection of rare Toyotas. Many of these models were driven to the ground as daily drivers early on. Where else could you find a flawless first-gen Toyota Corona?
The Mysterion is one of Ed Roth’s most famous creations, and Jeffrey Jones’ replica mirrors every detail with added perfection. The alien-like features were meticulously molded and reflect Jones’ deep admiration of Roth’s work. As if the presentation isn’t impressive enough, this is the only Mysterion that is fully functional. That’s right: This curious creature could legally cruise on the streets.
Just outside the doors, DriveShare by Hagerty offered opportunities for enthusiasts to get behind the wheel of four choice classic cars: a 1968 Ford Mustang California Special, ‘66 Mustang convertible, a sporty five-speed manual ‘76 Fiat Spider Pininfarina, and a slick silver ‘70 Mercedes-Benz 280SL convertible. After a cruise around the convention center, the participant’s faces beamed with delight, and those who never owned a classic left with a budding addiction.
Whether a new enthusiast or an avid collector, there’s no doubt that every show attendee left the event with a renewed passion for the automobile. It’s hard not to after admiring automotive history and connecting with the people who love it. Browse through the gallery below to take a deeper dive into all that The Classic Auto Show has to offer.