Every day sees a constant stream of press releases and pitches to my e-mail inbox, many of which are diverted straight into my deleted items folder without much thought. But when one containing the phrase “the world’s greatest cars” in the subject line flashed across my screen, well, that got my attention.
The outfit doing the honoring of said greatest cars in the world was the Salon Privé Concours d’Élégance (you know it’s a fancy event when it has that many accent marks in the name). Held for the past 15 years on the grounds of the of Blenheim Palace, a World Heritage Site northwest of London, Salon Privé bills itself as the U.K. ‘s most exclusive motor show. Given the cars on hand for last week’s event, which included 77 stunning machines from more than a century of motoring, it’s hard to argue with them. And far from being a super-snobby prewar parade of obscure marques you’d have to dust off a history book to know, this year’s 13 car classes (the show also features motorcycles) ranged from Classics of the Future (Post-2000) to new Milestones of Endurance Racing classes as part of the concours field, which was a socially distant affair given the current pandemic.
So are these really The World’s Greatest Cars? That’s as subjective a title as they come and you could argue that until the cars come home. But, man, this is one heck of an eclectic slate of class winners, thick with Ferraris and lots of British iron as you’d expect from a U.K. event, but with a few surprising cars thrown in for good measure.