More than 20,000 car aficionados flocked to the Monterey Peninsula at the end of August to get their dose of automotive thrills. One exciting event chased the next and the social calendars were bursting with places to be and cars to admire. The highlights of this show that turned the 18th green of Pebble Beach Golf Links in Carmel, California, into the most beautiful and most expensive parking lot in the world, are stunning. Pristine vintage cars, exotics, new models and futuristic concepts presented an exclusive segment of the past and the future of automotive history.
Best of Show
Drum roll for the 1937 Alfa Romeo 8C 2900B Touring Berlinetta owned by retired investment broker and Italian Car collector David Sobrick of Beverly Hills for winning Best of Show at the 2018 event. “It’s the world cup,” said Sobrick, “it’s beyond best of show, it is fantastic.” He describes his exquisite show piece as “a piece of automotive architecture, mounted on a grand prix chassis, and it has top of the line technology for the pre-war time.” There are only 5 cars of its kind.
To reach this top award the Alfa Romeo first had to win in its class and it also won the Charles A. Chayne Trophy and was named the J. B. & Dorothy Nethercutt Most Elegant Closed Car.
To take home his precious Lalique crystal trophy, Mr. Sobrick had to win against a 1929 Duesenberg J Murphy Town Limousine, and a 1948 Talbot-Lago T26 Grand Sport Figoni Fastback Coupé.
Auction sales for this year’s Pebble Beach extravaganza are estimated at a total of $368 million, 12 percent more than in 2017.
Another Duesenberg broke records as the most expensive American collector car and as the most valuable pre-war car ever sold at auction. The 400 hp 1935 Duesenberg SSJ was once owned by Gary Cooper and fetched the winning bid at $22 million.
But that did not put it on top of the auction list. The most expensive car ever sold at an auction was a 1962 Ferrari 250 GTO with $48,405,000. That record was previously held by another Ferrari 250 GTO in 2014 which sold for $38.1 million.
If cars could talk, we’d love to hear both of their stories!
A new player on the lawn of the Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance was the group of Citroën. Sandra Button, chairman of the event said: “Interest in Citroën among collectors has seen exponential growth in recent years. The Concours is pleased to showcase custom coachwork Citroëns that offer the best of French technology and design.”
The legendary Tucker, made immortal by Francis Ford Coppola’s movie, was also part of the show for the first time as were the cars of the Raj, featuring vehicles that were sold to Indian royalty during the British rule.
Electric supercars ruled the concept lawn. The allure of concept cars is that they show true car dreams and the height of creativity of the developing teams unspoiled by the pressures of the market. This is were car makers can show their visions.
Among all the other fabulous others the Audi PB18 e-tron, the Infinity Prototype 10, Automobili Pininfarina’s PF0 and the Mercedes EQ Silver Arrow made jaws drop.
In 2019 the 69th Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance will take place on August 18th and commemorate the centennials of Bentley and Zagato.