Pretoria - The 36th annual Cars in the Park at the Zwartkops racing circuit, organised by the Pretoria Old Motor Club, is expecting more than 2500 classic cars and motorcycles when the gates open to the public at 6am on Sunday 3 August.
Convenor Frik Kraamwinkel said: “We have a special team this year to direct traffic and ensure a steady flow on the R55 - but this show is incredible, you can get to Zwartkops at 6.30am and find a queue of classic Chevs, Chryslers, Mustangs, Corvettes, Ferraris - as well as Anglias, Cortinas and Datsuns - waiting to get in. There is simply nothing else like it in South Africa!”
The pits area will, as usual, be reserved for the club's” Special Vehicle” category and will feature rare vintage cars from before the First World War - which began 100 years ago this week - such as the Ford Model A (the original A, which came before the T!) as well as the Model T and rare examples of American classics from the 1930s such as Alex Duffey's Buick Dual Cowl Phaeton.
This straight-six convertible - which is still in regular use after 84 years - gets its name form its open body with two separate cockpits, a popular style for upmarket American cars in the days when the people who could afford them could also afford a chauffeur to drive them.
From that same golden era between the wars there will be great British marques, led by some superb Roll-Royce and Bentley cars owned by Graham Blackbeard, as well as an iconic 1929 4½-litre Le Mans 'Blower' Bentley, contrasted by mint early Mercedes-Benz examples and classic Italian badges from the 1930s such as Fiat, Lancia and Alfa Romeo.
The post-war American era will be represented by modern classics such as such as Cadillac convertibles, Buick Skylarks and Dodge Custom Royals, including a 1965 Chevrolet Malibu pillar-less coupe. The Malibu was sold in South Africa in the mid-1960s in four-door sedan guise as a replacement for the unlamented Chevy II, but this is a rare special import, tricked out with up-rated Corvette suspension and a 383 “stroker” V8.
There's also a twist this year: for the first time the club has invited a special display of hot rods and muscle-cars into its hallowed enclosure.
The rods include early Chevy and Ford Model A pick-ups customised with huge modern V8 motors, and the muscle-cars will include Pontiac Firebirds, Chev Camaros and Pontiac GTOs.
Another interesting theme will be a Karmann Ghia display of the original Type 1 convertibles, led by a pre-1959 low-light example and the last Type 1 made, also a convertible, from 1974.
But some of the most unexpected gems will be found in the general area, among literally thousands of British, French, German and Japanese classics, customised hot rods, dragsters and motorcycles, Jeeps and classic trucks, as well as hundreds of muscle cars - and a special display by the Mustang Club to celebrate the Pony Car's 50th anniversary.
More than 100 clubs will be represented, while private classics will range from ordinary cars of yesterday such as Cortinas and Datsuns to exotics, including Ferraris, De Tomasos and Lamborghinis.
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There will also be plenty of entertainment for children, including karting on the Zwartkops Kart raceway, and a dedicated play area, as well as a flea market selling all manner of goodies both motoring and not, and an arts and crafts market.
Drivers of pre-1980 classic cars - as well modern classics such as Ferraris and Porsche sports cars - will be admitted, with one passenger, free of charge - the rest will have to pay the standard entry of R80 each; children under 12 will also be admitted free.
The gates for classic cars will open at 6am on Sunday 3 August; spectators will be admitted to the track from 8 am, and the show will be open until 4pm.
For further information contact Frik Kraamwinkel on 083 627 4532.