Classics By The Beach – September 2014

Holy cow, we’re getting some beautiful weather! And that means beautiful cars by the bucketload, even on an event like Father’s Day.

Today’s Classics was jam packed and the cars kept rolling in consistently for a good hour or more after I arrived (and there were plenty already there when I turned up). There was a good helping of regular favourites but it’s always exciting to get some new attendees and September 2014 didn’t let anyone down in that respect.

Let’s take a look at some of the attendees with a few favourites at the end.


This BMW 325 had some nice M enhancement and looked the business…..

BMW 325

I’d love some time with this clean, gold 911 in a nice setting. Beautiful presentation.


Parked next door was my mate Ken’s Lotus Esprit turbo. Your first thought might be James Bond (as mine was for a moment) but it’s more Richard Gere and Julia Roberts. Bond had the earlier generation Esprit. In fact, this car has exactly the same colour and trim as Gere’s car in Pretty Woman. That’s not why Ken bought it, though. He’s an out-and-out Lotus guy – this is one of three he currently owns. I don’t know his thoughts on Pretty Woman 🙂



We had bumpered and bumperless Porsche 356’s there today. I love them both. With-bumpers is the classic factory look where bumperless gives it that sporty feel. When I get my Fulvia, it’ll be going bumperless, for sure.



Inside and outside an Alvis – a car I know nothing about at all.



And another car I know nothing about. I didn’t find out who owns this so I have no idea of its build or its mechanicals. It looks like fun, though.



Porsche never made a 928 Convertible but this intake could be referred to as a 928 ‘spider’.


One day I’ll learn to restore/rebuild a car. The Fulvia will be my first. After that I’d like to take on a Mini. Who does’t love a Mini?



The RenaultSport Megane is a genuine future classic in my mind and it was great to see this Blood Orange example there today. Want.



I call this ‘Good Karma’.

Really good karma…..




For the two-wheeled enthusiasts….. those who appreciate the goodness of a Cagiva (which I’m told is really quite good)



Herding Cats

There was a nice spattering of Jaguars at today’s event.

E-Types are always a favourite and this E-Type got plenty of eyeballs, which wasn’t surprising given its amazingly shiny condition.

Click to enlarge…..

This XJS was off to the side so it didn’t quite get the attention it deserved, but it sure was nice.

My personal favourite cat for today was this XK150. I only wish the window was down so that I could photograph the interior. It was magnificent. I love these curvy old Jags.


Fiat 2300

I have to organise a bunch of photo sessions with Tristan. This adorable Fiat 2300 would be just one of them. It had some kiddie seats in the back today so it wasn’t an ideal time, but hopefully this selection will give you a quick idea of just how graceful this mid-size Italian is. Beautiful.


Austin’s Powers

The power to mesmerise with beautiful lines, stunning detail and wonderful finish…. It’s no wonder these Healeys attract good money these days.


MGA Patina

There are a lot of highly polished and/or restored cars at Classics. That’s wonderful. The standard is always amazing.

But this car stood out today because a) it had been driven there, and b) it was obviously so authentic. An unrestored Mercedes Gullwing sold for buckets more at auction than a restored version in the same colour scheme earlier this year. There’s something to be said for authentic patina.



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BMW 2800

I really, really like this early BMW pillarless design. Safety regulations have a lot to answer for with the way they’ve diluted modern vehicle design.

Absolutely beautiful.


Favourite #1 – Alfa Romeo GTV 2000

My first favourite for this month is a debutante at Classics, having been picked up by its new owners just a few weeks ago. It’s a 1972 Alfa Romeo GTV 2000 Coupe fitted with period-correct optional Momo Vega wheels.

There’s plenty that’s wonderful about this car. It’s exhaust note sparkled on start up and all 105 series Alfas look like movie stars.

The real beauty of this car, though? It is 42 years old and 100% original.


Favourite #2 – VW Beetle

This was such a joy.

I’m pretty sure this Beetle was at Classics for the first time, too. My apologies to the owner if that’s not the case. The car drove in this morning amidst sparkling sunshine and the paint looked so deep and lustrous that I just wanted to strip down, dive in and go for a swim.

The owner has had the car for 16 years and first bought it as a beat-up runabout to use around Melbourne. When it started getting a little too beat-up, he figured it was time to put the car away for a while and it sat fir years before being treated to the restoration you see in the photos below.

And what a wonderful job! The 1200 engine has been bored out to 1300, fitted with a 1500 head and then supercharged. The paint was re-done in the original colour, though I doubt a Beetle ever came out of a VW factory looking this good. All-in-all, it’s a sensational custom Beetle that doesn’t go too far visually, but more than delivers on the road.

And best of all, it’s used regularly. As they should be.


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  1. Swade, You’ve done it again. Wonderful photos and comments, almost as good as being there. Did you take your 968 CS ? Are you saving for your Fulvia? Have you got your eyes on one or just hoping one will pop up?

    1. Ran out of time to wash the CS so I took the Brumby and parked it in the stalls, away from the good stuff. I have an offer in on a Fulvia. Local car. Needs everything being done to it. Still waiting for the response.

  2. Wonderful photos, Swade! Feels like we’re walking alongside you… Happy Father’s Day, as well!

  3. I love me some BMW E9, and you’re right about the design compromises.

    The Fiat points up something of the same ilk: even smallish, ‘typical’ cars have been stylish and well-designed in the past. Why are we seemingly mired in the Camry rut these days?

  4. Favourites!! How can you pick a favourite out of all those cars. I have four favourites,all British. I must be a masochist. I can’t go past the Morgan, especially in my favourite colour, yellow. The Alvis, athough a lesser one, is still an interesting car. Some-one said you should own a Jaguar once in your life, and a late model XK150 is a good place to start. A refined XK 120. A big Healey, a 3000 is a must and in red!