A pair of classic 1956 Chevy coupes. File photo: Stuart Johnston

Johannesburg - This summer’s edition of the Classic Car Show, on 3 December at Nasrec Expo Centre, south west of the city Johannesburg, is set to be the biggest yet, says organiser Paulo Calisto.

“The classic car scene never ceases to amaze me,” he said. “At every show we hold the turn-out increases, and at each show there are dozens of classics I’ve never seen before.”

Leading the charge in this hotbed of rumbling, snorting, fin-and-flash V8s will be the iconic mid-fifties Chevrolets, an increasing number of them customised in resto-mod style, with near-original bodywork, classic two-tone paint in eye-searingly bright colours, acres of chrome and under the bonnet, small-block Chevy V8s ranging from 289 cubic inches (4.6 litres) to fire-breathing 427 cubic inch monsters (that’s more than seven litres in Eurospeak!)
Think serious power - and even more serious fuel consumption!

“I love the look of those Chevys,” said Calisto, “with their dropped suspension and wider wheels, but still being true to the classic restored philosophy.”

Classic muscle - a mid-1960s Pontiac GTO flanked by first-generation Mustangs. File photo: Stuart Johnston

Sharing the limelight with these early muscle-cars will be a host of 1960s Oldsmobiles (including a few examples of the rare 442, in effect an Oldsmobile Cutlass coupé with heavy-duty ‘police pursuit’ powertrain and suspension), Chevrolet Corvettes and Camaros, Pontiacs, Dodges, Plymouths (including some classic Barracuda coupés) and Fords - especially the iconic 1965-73 first-generation Mustang, now more sought after than ever since the release of the current Mustang in South Africa.

It won’t be all Americana, however; the Cool Quotient of the Volkswagen Type 2 Transporter (or Kombi, as it’s universally known) seems to rise by the month, with genuine first-generation split window and second-generation bay window examples fetching silly money on the collectable classic market. You’ll see as many mint Kombi restorations as you will old-school customs with dropped suspensions and Porsche-replica rims - some of the latter with serious machinery behind that flip-up engine lid at the rear.

Rare VW bus, a cross-over model between a bay-window front and split-screen rear, known as a Brazilian. File photo: Stuart Johnston

Britain will be represented by flock of original Minis, including a large contingent from the Vereeniging area, as well as Dagenham Fords such as the Cortina and Escort, both modified and restored, along with oddities such as the “German Cortina” and the Australian-designed and built Chrysler Valiant.

Right up to the minute will be a special Jaguar-Land Rover display featuring the latest Discovery, the Range Rover Velar and the new two-litre Jaguar F-Type, as well as dozens of stalls selling all kinds of motor-related goods.

The Show will run from 8 am to 4 pm on Sunday; tickets are R60 for adults and R20 for children under 12 from Computicket, or R80 for adults and R20 for children under 12 at the gate.

As always, owners of classic and special interest cars, along with one passenger each, will be admitted free of charge, at Gate 2, while visitors will enter through Gate 5. Please note that no weapons or drugs of any description are permitted, and visitors are not allowed to bring their own foods or drinks, so you won’t be allowed to braai.

IOL Motoring