Pebble Beach – 20 August 2017
It is my pleasure to provide you with an exclusive gallery of the finest automobiles from this year’s Concours, the 67th in its history. I arrived on scene a little before 7 am where the crowds were already rearing and planted. They were there to witness the dawn patrol that started at 5 am where the cars get unloaded from their trucks and driven to the assigned display spots.
I’ve been waiting patiently for this very special day. This year featured the Isotta Fraschini, Carrozzeria Castagna, and American Dream Cars of the 60s. There was also two Ferrari displays, One-Off specials and Major Race Winners. There was also the 70th Anniversary of Ferrari display consisting of 70 cars, something I found just when I thought the show was over.
I was eager to see the two yellow Ferraris spotted earlier in the week on the Tour d’Elegance, a 1967 206 Dino Competizione Pininfarina Coupe and the 412P Competizione from the same year. Rushing past the concept lawn, I tried to ignore the Mercedes-Maybach Vision 6 Convertible and the Infiniti’s awesome Prototype 9 concept. Didn’t work, I was lured in by the Maybach’s sheer scale and flow, deadly gorgeous.
As I got on the field, I had the pleasure of catching up with some of the cars still driving in that consisted of the Bugatti 101C concept, a special limousine version of the Chrysler Airflow, alongside a 1954 Ferrari 375 MM. This car was ordered by film director Roberto Rossellini for his wife, Swedish actress Ingrid Bergman, and even though she never took delivery of the car, it is still referred to as the “Bergman Coupe.”
The trio of Ferraris built by Boano really got my attention. They are the only three ever constructed, a special occasion to have them here at this year’s Concours. Their unique design and proportions suggested that they were built specifically for the American market, as they were wider and sleeker while featuring wings that echoed the style statement of the time in the United States.
I finally spotted the two Ferraris that hold quite a special place in my life, growing up as a kit. First was the Ferrari Dino of which my father had gifted me a 1:43 die-cast toy specially brought from Japan. I never assumed I would ever see this unique bubbly design with its front wing and El Camino style flying buttresses. Then was the Ferrari 412P, one of the rarest competition specials based on the Ferrari 330 P3 race car that just captivated everyone around it, including the bugs, who are always attracted to the yellow cars at shows.
The winning Ferraris was astounding, just as impactful as the line of GT40s last year. It was a line of the undisputed greatest hits from the Italian manufacturer. On the way out, the 70-years of Ferrari display was as incredible as things could be, as it covered one Ferrari for each of the years that have gone by.
The Isotta Fraschini’s demanded attention and space. Their grandiose scale and special detailing exuded class and distinction. The Castagna coachwork were elegant takes in further personalizing an already great manufacturers work. Carrozzeria Castagna was founded by Carlo Castagna in 1849 in Milan, Italy. They were focused on top-of-the-line coachwork for a very exclusive list of clients that included the pope, movie stars and royalty. They were the biggest coach-builder in Italy at one point.
Wandering over to the far end I discovered more dream cars of the 60s. Ironically, I spotted the Gene Winfield built 1964 Reactor at a hot rod roadster show earlier this year parked casually alongside participants supporting cars, quite a change of scene. The 1967 Gyro-X Prototype was nuts, it used a weighted flywheel to keep balanced on two wheels while stationary. My favorite was the Pontiac Vivant, it did win the class award.
Please enjoy the rest of this final article on my coverage of 2017 Car Week from Monterey, hopefully see you all next year