What to look forward to in the collector car world in 2022

WORDS: ELLIOTT HUGHES

Call us näive, but we’re feeling optimistic about 2022, even as the Omicron Covid variant continues to cause disruption across the globe. But if the past two years have taught us anything, it’s that we have become adept at dealing with disruption – and that where there’s a will, there’s a way. 

But before we get into the litany of fantastic events scheduled for 2022, it’s time to take a look at a few important automotive anniversaries taking place this year – chief among which is the 60th anniversary of the fabled Ferrari 250GTO. Ferrari has lined up a series of exhibitions at its museum in Maranello, Modena, to showcase some of the most important examples of its famous race-bred GT car. An exciting inclusion confirmed for this is the legendary 1962 250GTO Breadvan commissioned by Count Volpi di Misurata.

Another car celebrating its 60th birthday this year is the Alpine A110. Alpine has confirmed that it will mark this milestone at the Goodwood Festival of Speed by bringing together some of its most revered models for the first time in the venue’s Formula 1 paddock. An original 1955 A106, the iconic A110, the 1978 Le Mans-winning A442b and the A450b currently competing in the FIA World Endurance Championship (WEC) are all confirmed to be in attendance. There will doubtlessly be other celebrations planned, too.

Audi, Cadillac and Opel are all also marking important birthdays, celebrating their 90th, 120th and 160th years respectively. More announcements about anniversary celebrations are sure to make headlines in due course, but now it’s time to look forward at what 2022 has in store – even if the dates get shuffled around a little.    

An exciting year of automotive events kicks off with urgency in January with the splendid Cavallino Classic on January 20-23 and Arizona Auction Week on January 22-30. The former can only be described as the ultimate Ferrari event, with hundreds of the world’s finest examples descending on the Breakers Resort Hotel in Palm Beach, Florida, for tours, track sessions, parties, seminars and a renowned concours that is judged to the highest standards. Arizona Auction Week will see almost all major auction houses hold high-profile sales of some of the finest collector cars on the planet, highlighted by the gargantuan Barrett-Jackson auction.

For many of us in the UK and Europe, the eclectic Rétromobile in Paris is the usual season opener, but with travel restrictions still in place and some exhibitors pulling out, it’s likely that this year’s show will be quieter. This year’s takes place February 2-6.

The informal and eclectic Concours in the Hills will open proceedings on February 12 in Arizona, but it’s the ICE St Moritz on February 26 that has us really excited. The event has been cancelled for two years in succession now, so here’s hoping that the third time’s a charm and we will get to see the stunning spectacle of supercars sliding across the frozen surface of St Moritz Lake for the first time since the inaugural event in 2018.

Amelia Island Concours d’Elegance, now revamped and rebranded ‘The Amelia’, returns to Florida just one week later on March 3-6, accompanied by sales from several of the major auction houses. The quality of this concours in 2021 was as high as ever, embodied by the winning duo of a 1926 Hispano-Suiza H6B Cabriolet and a 1974 Shadow DN4. It will be fascinating to see which car takes the crown in 2022. In Australia over the same weekend, the exclusive Sydney Harbour Concours also takes place. A month later, the Goodwood Members’ Meeting is back to its springtime slot, on April 9-10.

California’s La Jolla Concours d’Elegance will welcome in the warmer months on April 22-24 and brings the year’s season of automotive events into full swing. In the UK, the new Salon Privé London event takes place April 21-23 on the lawns of the Royal Hospital Chelsea. A week later, there’s Donington’s Historic Festival’s exciting two-day celebration of eight decades of motor sport on April 30 to May 1, and the Monaco Grand Prix Historic takes place two weeks later on May 13-15. Last year’s increased coverage of the Monaco Historic Grand Prix (and Jean Alesi’s much-publicised crash in an ex-Niki Lauda Ferrari 312) means enthusiasm for the event is greater than ever.   

Major events come even thicker and faster in June. In the US, the ever-growing Greenwich Concours takes place on June 3-5. And then comes the legendary Le Mans 24 Hours , on June 11-12. The second year of the Le Mans Hypercar class should give Toyota much sterner competition this year, and it will be intriguing to see how Peugeot’s innovative, wingless 9X8 LMH performs. 

We are particularly excited to be holding our inaugural Concours on Savile Row in London on June 15-16 in conjunction with RM Sotheby’s, several leading car manufacturers and, of course, the Row’s world-famous tailors. The concours takes place on the iconic street of Savile Row, which will be completely closed to traffic for the duration of the event, allowing visitors to discover the very best from the worlds of tailoring and classic cars. 

Meanwhile, Italy will see hundreds of classic cars drive from Brescia to Rome and back again for the 2022 edition of the legendary Mille Miglia, on June 15-18. The intrepid and challenging event has gone from strength to strength in recent years, complementing the alluring spectacle of the traditional event for cars from 1927-57 with the Mille Miglia Green for cutting-edge electric and hybrid vehicles.  

It would be impossible to write a preview of what to look forward to in 2022 without mentioning the Goodwood Festival of Speed, which is scheduled for June 23-26. Details around the world’s greatest celebration of motor sport are thin on the ground at the moment, but we think you already know what to expect: a colourful, intoxicating, vast and unmissable event set in the beautiful parkland surrounding Goodwood House in West Sussex. The spectacle of cars streaking up the famous Hill and getting perilously close to that iconic flint wall is always something to savour.  

The London Concours gets underway just two days later on June 28-30 at the opulent grounds of the Honourable Artillery Company in the centre of the UK capital. The event kicked off a condensed events season in June in 2021, and the quality was staggering despite the limitations presented by the pandemic. We’re confident it will be even better this year as the world increasingly gets a handle on the situation.

June 30 is marked by the return of the Le Mans Classic, which runs until July 3. Created in 2002 by Peter Auto, the race is a retrospective of Le Mans’ storied history and attracted 195,000 spectators when it was last held in 2018. The crowds had plenty to keep them occupied over three days, with 600 historic racing cars taking to the Circuit de la Sarthe, complemented by the display of 8500 classic cars.  

Mid-July is punctuated by several important US concours starting with Copshaholm on July 9 and Misselwood on July 15-17. Copshaholm is a relatively new event hosted by the Studebaker National Museum, and will showcase 70 of the world’s finest cars in the splendour of Copshaholm Mansion’s grounds. Misselwood’s Boston North Shore ocean-front setting has been a popular destination for concours enthusiasts for the past 12 years, and combines fashion shows, live music, great food and test drives, with elegant cars and motorcycles.  

Germany’s Schloss Dyck Classic Days kicks off August in style at the 11th century Schloss Dyck moated castle. The event takes place from August 5-7 and is unashamedly inspired by the Festival of Speed, albeit on a smaller scale. So, expect exciting demonstration runs, a concours and car club displays. The quality and rarity of cars on offer is something to behold, too. 

Another headline event takes place in Germany a week later at the fabled Nürburgring for the AvD Oldtimer Grand Prix on August 13-15. More than 60,000 people attend the Nordschleife each year to see grids of up to 50 cars take on the entirety of the twisting 12.9-mile ‘ring, making for perhaps the most challenging historic motor sport event on Earth.  

But the world’s eyes will undoubtedly be focused on the consistently spectacular Monterey Car Week in California from August 12-21. The dizzying array of events deserve an article in their own right, but as ever the highlights are the wonderful Concours on the Avenue on August 16, the massive Rolex Monterey Motorsports Reunion at Laguna Seca on August 19-22, The Quail, A Motorsports Gathering on August 19, and the bonkers Concours d’Lemons on August 20. Then there’s the jewel in the crown of the entire Car Week and global concours calendar: the magnificent Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance on August 22. Will a post-war car take Best of Show this year after the Ferrari 365P ‘Tre-Posti’ came so close in 2021?   

As Monterey Car Week nears its end, the lesser-known Rømø Motor Festival in Denmark gets underway on August 20-22, paying tribute to the Scandinavian country’s history of beach racing with pre-WW2 bikes and cars racing across the sand to relive motor sport’s glorious, pioneering past. 

Back in the UK, people will be gearing up for the Silverstone Classic, which with over 20 races and 1000 entries is the largest Historic racing festival in the world. With more than three decades of success, and machinery that ranges from historic DFV-powered Formula 1 cars to pre-war racers and classic GT, Touring cars and Sports Cars, you’ll want to keep your weekend open on August 26-28. 

August comes to a close with one of the UK’s most prestigious concours events, Salon Privé, which has already announced it will mark its 14th edition with a special celebration of the Ferrari 250GTO’s 60th anniversary. It will be fascinating to see what the event can deliver on August 31 to September 4.

Salon Privé shares a healthy rivalry with the Concours of Elegance Hampton Court, which is held over the same weekend on September 2-4. It’s open to the public on each of its three days, with a world-beating selection of cars in attendance and several new attractions promised. Both Salon Privé and Hampton Court Concours can attest to being the two finest events of their type on UK shores at the moment.

You can make a strong argument that the Goodwood Revival is the greatest classic car event in the world. It really does have it all: the most iconic historic racing cars in fierce wheel-to-wheel competition piloted by star drivers, awe-inspiring demonstration runs, period dress and a famously joie-de-vivre atmosphere. Last year saw Formula 1 world champion Jenson Button make his historic racing debut at the Revival in a fearsome Shelby Cobra and svelte Jaguar E-type, alongside the likes of Jochen Mass, Jean Eric Vergne, Brian Johnson, André Lotterer and Rowan Atkinson. Who knows what the Duke of Richmond has in store this year, on September 16-18?  

The Audrain Newport Motor Week and Concours on the US East Coast rounds off the month, taking place September 29-October 2, with its mix of top-end concours, rally, cars and coffee, and social events.

The Paris Motor Show on October 17-22 will usher in the final act of the 2022 events season, followed by London Motor Week and its grand finale of the London to Brighton Veteran Car Run on November 6. The two events couldn’t be more different. The Paris Motor Show is a typical indoor modern expo, albeit one of the largest and most important ones of the year, particularly with the unfortunate cancellation of the Geneva Motor Show.

Those who enjoy revelling in the past more than looking ahead to the future will feel much more at home at the world-famous London to Brighton Veteran Car Run, which commemorated its 125th anniversary last year. The event is a re-enactment of the renowned Emancipation Run of 1896, and involves driving antiquated pre-1905 motor cars 60 miles from London to Brighton in a non-competitive regularity rally. Certainly one for the bucket list – even if there is a strong possibility of a breakdown or two… 

So, plenty to look forward to already – and that’s only scratching the surface of what the year ahead has in store. We can’t wait to hear what’s announced in the coming months and to experience for ourselves some of the events mentioned.

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Photography: Newspress, Cavallino Classic, La Jolla Concours, Mille Miglia, Le Mans Classic, AvD Oltimer Grand Prix, Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance and Goodwood Revival

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