Impressions from the 2018 InterClassics Brussels
The 2018 InterClassics Brussels closed its doors a week ago, and this article should provide a brief summary of impressions now that had some time to digest. For those not so familiar with the event, I wrote a summary of last year's edition, as InterClassics 2017 was among my favourite events in 2017.
This year’s event offered two thematic exhibitions and lots of classic cars, as it made good use of a total of four halls of the Brussels Expo.
To give an impression about the size, the first theme is the orange part on the map and it is a road segment diorama with a few dozen cars.
The 60th anniversary of the Brussels World Expo ‘58
The first theme commemorates the 60th anniversary of the Brussels World Expo ‘58. Sixty years ago, the World Expo was held in Brussels, attracting some 42 million visitors, and imprinted as one of the most memorable events in Belgium’s post-war history.
Also as it also marked the birth of Belgium’s foremost landmark, the Atomium. 60 years later, InterClassics Brussels 2018 takes a look back at the Expo 58, by a special exposition summoning a unique collection of cars from the year 1958 in Hall 5.
The stage is laid out as a road, and the cars are surrounded by decoration from that epoch to summon the moments of everyday life of the 50's. The cars are showing a great variety, in category, brands, and purpose, another sign, that the beauty of the Benelux classic car scene lies in the variety of brands.
In the crossroads of Europe, many car nations are represented in all categories, from mass-market cars like Opel, VW and Renault....
...through affordable and luxury exotics like coupés, cabriolets and roadsters as Karmann Ghia, Alfa Giulietta, Lancia Aurelia and Mercedes SL up to the high-end luxury brands like Rolls Royce.
The 70th anniversary of Porsche
The second thematic is dedicated to the 70th anniversary of the first Porsche production car, the 356. The very first Porsche was registered on 8 June 1948; the 356 ‘No. 1’ Roadster was built by Ferry Porsche.
Ferdinand was one of the most brilliant minds of the 20th century he and his work inspired many product lines from agricultural tractors to race cars. Porsche relied intensively on Volkswagen parts in the production process such as the air-cooled Boxster engine, and the mechanical parts including the engine, the shock absorber, and the chassis were all built by Volkswagen, while initially, coachbuilders were also commissioned to create new versions (sometimes called Pre-A models).
The Porsche 356 remained in production until 1965, and between 1948 and 1965, 76,313 models of the Porsche 356 were built. Along with the model, the Porsche company's anniversary year also was celebrated, in this case by an exceptional collection of Porsche 356s on display in Hall 6.
The press releases did not exaggerate, the anniversary stage showcases an impressive set of 356 versions, from A, B, SL, roadsters and even the furious 550 Spyder.
The corner is reinforced by Autoworld’s contribution and a small Porsche Classic car network stage. And that is just the tip of the iceberg.
Porsche models constitute the very backbone of every classic car show in this region, InterClassics is no exception.
Restoration specialists, racers, classic car dealerships bring an immense amount of Porsches.
It was evermore surprising the absence of transaxle models. That might be explained by the fact that I hardly saw any car under 40.000 asking price (even those were part of a larger collection). The four halls are filled with prime stuff. Perhaps one exaption is Hall 7, where car clubs meet and showcase their cherished models with funny decorations. Nevertheless, the beauty of Benelux is the variety and polyvalence, it would not be enough to flash a 911 to show up, when you are up against major auction houses and collectors.
I believe the above impressions could serve as a good intro (I also published a bit more comprehensive article on my personal website), in the next part, I will present some of the favourite elements with a closer look on them. I can tell you already, it's going to be one hell of a carspotting... :)