The Avants event at Chateau Ste. Michelle had some very high end hypercars on display. A Ferrari Enzo or a La Ferrari might seem like they are the best. How about a McLaren Senna? Seems like the best huh? That might be true but the one next to them was the one I really was taken with. I am not a big Porsche fan. I don’t have a problem with Porsches but I have never been taken with them in the way some have. However, I make an exception for the Carrera GT. That is a car that seems to be special and the end of an era of car types. I recall seeing one on the streets in Chicago and being blown away. Consequently, when I saw this one next to the more recent high end creations, I was really excited. It is a great looking car and something more traditional in the way it is designed. It was also super expensive when it was new. Of course, if you want one now, it is even more expensive!
The mid-80s was very different to today when it came to expensive cars. Now it feels like a new super car or hypercar is being unveiled every other week. The market for big cars was obviously a lot smaller back then. One of the cars of that era was the Ferrari Testarossa. It was a beast of a car with conspicuous grilles on the side and, in an early iteration, only one wing mirror on the driver’s side.
When I come across one these days, it is always a nice reminder of my teenage years. There is one that is a regular at Exotics@RTC. It was there on a normal day and returned for the Italian Day along with some other examples. It is a car with a muscular look to it with a very wide and low profile and some flaring at the back to emphasize its features. I still think it looks great. Whether it is a fun car to drive, I have no idea.
The Exotics@RTC team have a number of special days throughout the season and I figured the Italian Car Special was probably one worth taking a look at. I wasn’t mistaken. Unlike the normal meets that take place out in the parking lot, this one was centered in the shopping mall itself. The atrium was filled with Italian cars of many marques. This even included Lamborghini tractors!
It will come as little surprise to know that the prancing horse was on display in large numbers. The centerpiece of the display was a a pair of La Ferraris – one with a roof and one open topped – with an Enzo and an F40. This was quite a valuable selection to have in the middle and it seemed rather funny how so many expensive cars were barely getting any attention as a result of the focus on this foursome. Alfas were also on show and there were some older Fiats that were clearly trimmed for rally activities.
Super cars have come a long way. Now they are ridiculously powerful and also very technologically advanced. A supercar from the 80s has a very sparse feel to it in comparison. Coming across a Ferrari F40 was quite a throwback for me. I saw my first F40 when I was a student. It was parked in a mews street in Kensington near a pub I used to frequent (that doesn’t narrow it down much). I was shocked to see one then and I still am a little shocked now. This one was not getting as much interest as I thought it was due but I was happy not to have it surrounded by people.
When a museum has a wide variety of vehicles to look at, it seems a bit cheesy to spend too much time looking at the modern supercars. It feels a bit like being a kid with a picture of a Countach on the wall. However, supercars are pretty cool and worthy of a look. On the main floor of America’s Car Museum, there were a few pretty great looking cars.
Ferrari were well represented with some lovely looking modern motors as well as a Testarossa. That car took me back to the 80s. An Aston Martin was also there along with a Lamborghini Aventador which was pretty special. Porsche was also well covered. A 918 first caught my eye but I was quickly drawn away by a Carrera GT. This was only the second example I had seen. (The first was actually driving along Wacker Drive in Chicago, something that would make me very nervous in a car that expensive!)
The David Hobbs talk wasn’t the only thing going on at Blackhawk when I was there. Prior to the presentation, there had been a gathering of Ferraris and Alfa Romeos in the parking lot. I didn’t realize that this had been planned so I turned up for the opening hour of the museum and was surprised by the cars outside. I did spend a few minutes wandering around and checking out some of the Ferraris. As an 80s kid, I couldn’t help being attracted to the Testarossa. What a beast of a car. The others were cool too. Many of them look better but something about those side fins is cool. This one had mirrors on both sides. I always loved the large single mirror fit but I guess you don’t see many of those.
I am certainly partial to a modern Ferrari. In recent years, Maranello has turned out some really gorgeous looking cars and I wouldn’t mind having the chance to play with one or two of them if the opportunity were to present itself. However, if you go back in time, they came up with some cars that, for their time, were really quite special. It is this vintage of Ferrari that you find in the Blackhawk Automotive Museum.
The variation is styles is quite marked. Some are simple looking roadsters but you also have some touring cars that, without a badge might not be obviously a Ferrari to those who are not experts of the marque. The choice of colors for some of them is also a little different from what you would see now. There are a number of cars in the main exhibition area but there are also a couple that are in the entrance foyer to the museum. I guess Ferrari is a brand that has earned to be given a prime spot in any collection.
Not a huge amount to say about this. It is just a chance to see some nice cars. The shots are not the greatest but you grab a chance when it is there. There is a car dealership about 10 minutes walk from us that specializes in very high end cars. They have a bunch of Bentleys and rollers but lots of sportier types as well. The odd thing is that they will regularly leave very expensive “motors” out on the street.