The Amelia Island Concours 2018: A Photo Gallery

Jim Motavalli

Jim Motavalli | Mar 14, 2018

AMELIA ISLAND, FLORIDA—Elo. He goes by only one name, with bases in Florida and in London, where he owns an auto museum that specializes in supercars. Once one of Britain’s best-known male models, he invested his money in cars instead of, you know, whatever models buy.

Elo with the only Maybach 57S coupe in the U.S. (Jim Motavalli photo)

Elo brought one of his cars over from England to the Amelia Island Concours D’Elegance, driving it up from Miami (where he has an art gallery). The concours celebrates the exotic and unusual, and Elo’s car fits—it’s a two-door 2010 Maybach 57S Coupe, as customized by Xanetec. They cost $985,000 new, and the one in Florida is the sole example in the U.S.

A fashion show went along with the cars, including this one-of-a-kind Chrysler Thunderbolt. (Jim Motavalli photo)

Just about everything on the Ritz Carlton lawn was very special in some way, and many were unique.

Dogs were welcome at the Concours. This French bulldog was named Wilson. (Jim Motavalli photo)

Here’s a photo gallery of some breathtaking cars I thought were a kind of visual candy, plus a few of Ed “Big Daddy” Roth’s wilder customs—united at Amelia Island for the first time:

A glorious 1951 Ferrari was a movie star. (Jim Motavalli photo)

This beautiful early Ferrari, a 1951 212 Export Barchetta, is one of only seven made. It won several races, and was seen in the film The Racers, starring Kirk Douglas. The current owner relocated the original body and commissioned a two-year restoration in Italy.

A practical Ferrari? Why not a wagon? (Jim Motavalli photo)

Ferrari never actually built a station wagon, alas. This one, a 1972 Daytona, was designed by Luigi “Coco” Chinetti, Jr. (son of Ferrari’s importer) and Gene Garfinkle. With a 4.4-liter V-12, it’s capable of 173 mph, and will also get your groceries. The “bread van” Ferrari has less than 4,000 miles on the odometer.

Arise from your long sleep, oh Jaguar. (Jim Motavalli photo)

 This Jaguar 150S convertible was parked with just 42,000 miles, and slept for decades, before a Greek enthusiast found it and got it back on the road. Its current Connecticut owners commissioned a full restoration. It was a Amelia Island class winner.

Elvis drove one of these. (Jim Motavalli photo)

One of the most beautiful cars ever built, the BMW 507’s $10,000 cost (in the 1950s!) doomed it in the marketplace. Only 252 were built, and Elvis Presley had one in Germany. This other one at Amelia Island was equipped with a rare hardtop, as well as knock-off wheels.

The Cobra's one-off ancestor. (Jim Motavalli photo)

John Tojeiro styled some race cars that bore a strong resemblance to the Ferrari 166 MM Barchetta. He sold a version of his design to AC for the car that became the Ace, and then the Cobra. So was Ferrari responsible for the Cobra, or was John Tojeiro?

Racing aerodynamic needs created the sleek form of this early Ferrari. (Jim Motavalli  photo)

This is an actual Ferrari 166 MM Barchetta, with body by Oblin. Does it look like a Cobra?

What a crime! Only three made! (Jim Motavalli photo)

Only three Cisitalia 202 SC convertibles were made by the Italian coachbuilder Vignale, and here’s one of them, powered by a tiny four-cylinder, 1.1-liter engine.

This stylish convertible was ahead of its time in 1949. (Jim Motavalli photo)

The Kurtis convertible was the brainchild of Frank Kurtis of Glendale, California. Just 17 were built before the company crashed and burned. A Kurtis was Motor Trend’s first cover car in 1949.

Not  the most beautiful Porsche, but one of the most winning. (Jim Motavalli photo)

This 1961 Porsche/Abarth 356 Carrera came first in class at LeMans in 1961, and second in 1962. Carreras were being celebrated—the only 356 customized by George Barris was also present.

And now for something completely different, a Rolls-Royce hunting car. (Jim Motavalli photo)

“Shooting brakes” were wood-bodied hunting cars. This 1926 Rolls-Royce Phantom I is now resident at a ranch in Mineola, Texas.

Do you remember the Ed "Big Daddy" Roth model kits? This "Outlaw" started them all. Jim Motavalli photo)

“Outlaw” was the first “Big Daddy” Roth custom, with a fiberglass body and a 1949 Cadillac engine. Believe it or not, the 1957 “Outlaw” began life as a 1929 Model A Ford.

You'd cook under that canopy. (Jim Motavalli photo)

From 1961 comes the “Beatnik Bandit I,” built on a 1949 Oldsmobile chassis. The bubble top is clear acrylic, and undoubtedly turned the car into an oven.

Mysterion had not one but two side-by-side T-Bird motors. (Jim Motavalli photo)

Two years later, Roth built “Mysterion,” powered by two side-by-side 406-cubic-inch Thunderbird engines. It also had two FMX transmissions. This isn’t the original; it’s a replicar built by Galpin Motors.

Is it worth sitting through Bikini Beach to see this surf-friendly car? (Jim Motavalli photo)

“Surfite” was right in time for the surfing craze, and was featured in the movie Bikini Beach. It was sedate for a Roth car, with a 60-horsepower four-cylinder engine. Roth signed the car, praising the restoration.   

A commuter car for the very brave. (Jim Motavalli photo)

And finally, this tiny thing, seen with owner Jeff Lane of the memorable Lane Motor Museum in Nashville, is a British-made Peel. In one seater form, it's the smallest roadgoing car ever made, but this is the limousine-like two-seater. Ripley's Believe it or Not loves these microcars.


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