Tag Archives: exotics@rtc

AMG Mercedes Fins and Strakes

I was taking a look at one of the AMG Mercedes cars that was at Exotics@RTC.  This is a road car but it has clearly gone through a lot of aerodynamic development.  The front end of the car is covered in aero treatments with fin and strakes of all sorts.  I have no idea how important this is for driving the car around Seattle but it was really quite something.  I spent a few minutes just looking at them and thinking back to my aero days.

McLaren Elva

This car was at the opening weekend of Exotics@RTC and I have to admit I had no idea what it was at the time.  A couple of days later, I saw a YouTube video about it and realized that it was what I had seen.  The McLaren Elva is a strange vehicle.  No roof and not even a windshield.  Apparently, it is strange enough that they are not selling so well and the production run has been reduced.  I guess the best part of two million dollars is too much for a car that requires you to wear googles and probably a helmet!

Citroen Style

I must not be a typical Brit because I seem to have an affinity for things French.  This is something I have acquired over the years (and may be the reason I was driven from the UK!).  The French do things their own way and it results in some really interesting stuff.  The Citroen DS is just such an interesting thing.  I first noticed one when traveling on a ferry and was fascinated when it started up and the suspension inflated.  I had never seen something like that before.

The looks didn’t appeal to me then because I was used to the more familiar vehicles of the time.  Now I have come to appreciate it for being a stylish looking vehicle.  Sure, it has quirks that might make it a nuisance to own but it certainly looks very swish.  One was on display at Exotics@RTC and I was drawn to it.  It certainly didn’t hurt that the owner had applied hubcaps that looked like some sort of hypnosis device.  What a fantastic addition to the day.

BMW M1

Another supercar at the opening weekend of Exotics@RTC was a BMW M1.  This one was slightly away from the center of things but still in the premium area.  However, I suspect it wasn’t getting as much attention as some of the other cars.  I ended up chatting to the guy that owned it.  He was from Sarf London but now lives out here and was a fun guy.

The M1 came out a while before I went to university and I recall that one of my aero professors had been involved in the design team.  It has the look of a supercar from that era but that doesn’t stop it looking cool.  I was particularly taken by the wheels which were made by Campagnolo – the manufacturer of the group set for my road bike!

Cars like this showing up are what makes Exotics@RTC such a fun event.  There will always be a lot of super expensive cars on show – many of which are brought along from dealers – but there will be some unusual and interesting vehicles that are a bit out of the ordinary.  For someone that knows their cars better than me, it would be a particular treat.

Exotics Starts Its 2022 Season

After two aborts due to bad weather forecasts, the Exotics@RTC season finally kicked off in April.  The first event of the year is always a popular one with both those displaying their cars and those coming out to see them.  I was keen to be there and didn’t have a conflict so got ready early and headed down to Redmond.  It was a full showing.  They had the center of the shopping mall filled with cars as is the case for the special days – normal weekends are confined to the parking lots – and it was interesting to see what cars had a lot of attention.

Some of the more special cars are often there and don’t get so many people looking at them.  I find it strange that a Ferrari F40 elicits so little attention.  Even the Senna wasn’t getting too many people around it.  With so many exotic vehicles, I guess there is plenty to look at.  A few of the cars I saw on this day will get their own posts because they deserve it.  However, this will be a selection of the views and cars available that day.

Multiple Minis

Exotics@RTC has attracted a few Minis during the 2021 season.  Having learned to drive in a Mini and used one a lot in my teenage years, I am always happy to see the original versions.  Sure, the modern Minis are fun vehicles but the originals are more interesting, even if they would not provide much protection in the event of doing something silly.

The one I drove was powered by an 850cc engine.  The 1275 engines were far more exotic.  Coopers were something else.  Here the focus is mainly on the Coopers but that is fine.  Finding one turned in to a convertible was a bit of a surprise.  It is fun to see that plenty of people still find the Mini fun and keep them going and in great condition.

Electric Karman Ghia

The Karman Ghia is a car that is rightfully considered a classic.  People spend large sums of money on keeping them in working order and as close to or better than the condition in which they left the factory.  One I saw at Exotics@RTC had taken things a different way.  It had been converted into an electric vehicle.

The owner had everything open to inspect with the batteries and control electronics fitted in to the available space within the car.  I would imagine that a car as light as a Karman Ghia would, when given the power and instant torque of an electric drivetrain, go like stink!  It was certainly attracting a lot of attention.  Getting a photo of it without people all around it proved impossible.  After a while of waiting, I concluded that the attention was really part of the story so accepted that it should have a lot of people in the photo.

Jaguar Details

During the British day at Exotics@RTC, there were some old Jaguars taking center stage in the shopping area.  I was checking out the grill on one of them and looked at the headlights.  There was a little logo in the middle of the lights that I had not noticed when looking at previous cars.  I guess it is an original feature but it could be an aftermarket thing.  That seems out of keeping with the way these vehicles are maintained so I hope it is original.

Vintage BMW Style

When I go to Exotics@RTC, I just enjoy the vehicles and occasionally know something about them.  Most of the time, I don’t know much about them at all.  Some of my friends are far more knowledgeable about cars than I am and they can recognize what is significant and what is not or even what is genuine and what is not.  I don’t have that knowledge.  Instead, I see something that appeals to me or doesn’t.

German day, earlier this summer, included a vintage BMW.  This car looked like the sort of thing that would have appeared in old movies.  The sweeping lines of the car, the suicide doors, the shape of the windows – all of these just looked really elegant to me.  This was a car that had a certain something and I was drawn to it.  The fact it got a central position in the display must suggest it was not an average vehicle but I don’t know why.  Maybe some of you will instantly recognize it and point out I was looking at something amazing or something decidedly average!

Renault 5 Turbo 2

Exotics@RTC provides cars of many vintages but I always find myself drawn to cars from the 80s.  Since I was a teenager in that decade, they were the cars that I was paying attention to – assuming they were available in Europe at the time.  US cars of that vintage are generally a mystery to me.  The appearance of a Renault 5 Turbo 2 was a really nice surprise.  The Renault 5 was not a particularly wonderful car.  I drove one for a while and, while it could go quite quickly in a straight line, it didn’t have great grip.

However, the similarities between that car and the Turbo version were basically the name and nothing else.  The Turbo was a monster of a vehicle in comparison.  It went like stink and it was so wide, it was basically a different car.  There wasn’t even a back seat because the engine had been put there instead.  The owner happened to open up the engine cover while I was walking by which was a lucky break.  It showed up again at a following meet so I was able to get a few shots of it from various angles.  I was back to being a teenager dreaming of a hot hatch.