The Second Annual Celebration of Automobiles at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway hosted over 160 cars for opening day of the 96th running of the Indianapolis 500. The Vintage and Historic Car Show featured automobiles produced by manufacturers participating in the Indianapolis 500 during the 1920-1970 era and other significant manufacturers. around the Pagoda Plaza area.
1920 ReVere Tourer
Copyright ©2012 Dennis E. Horvath
The cars around the Pagoda Plaza were some of the best from the collectible car universe. A broad selection of Indiana-built autos ranged from a 1920 ReVere Tourer Phaeton to a 1961 Studebaker Lark VI. This ReVere, one of the approximate 247 produced, was an excellent example of this Logansport built car. The Studebaker Lark represented the other end of the Indiana manufacturing spectrum. Chrome trim on this model Lark ran above the natural front fender contour line with pin striping below for an interesting contrast.
A broad range of other domestic-built cars spanned from a 1920 Chevrolet FB Baby Grand touring car to a 1970 Oldsmobile 442 Indianapolis 500 Pace Car. This Chevrolet offered a great idea of the type of automobile that appealed to the ordinary driver of the era. I can still remember this white Olds convertible with twin broad black stripes and scoops pacing the race.
1970 Oldsmobile 442
Copyright ©2012 Dennis E. Horvath
Non-domestic autos ranged from a 1928 Bugatti Tipo 40 Torpedo Speedster to a 1966 Ferrari 300GT 2+2 coupe. This blue Bugatti featured 2+2 seating for sleek open touring. The Ferrari red Pininfarina-designed coupe served as outstanding example of Italian styling of the era.
The Emerging Tech Showcase showcased the Purdue Collegiate evGrand Prix, in which students from colleges and universities race their electric-powered karts on a course next to the IMS Hall of Fame Museum. Since electric motors make no noise, only the squeal of skidding rubber could be heard as these electric karts zoomed around the race track. These collegiate competitors provided a glimpse into our automotive future.
The new Automobile Festival featured current and late model vehicles displayed inside Turn 2. One interesting offering in the festival was the DMC Electric, featuring remanufactured electric DeLorean Motor Cars, which can accelerate from 0 to 60 m.p.h. in 4.9 seconds and have a top speed of 125 m.p.h.
This year’s Celebration of Automobiles featured three events in one-track wide celebration. The Celebration expanded on the original mission of the Speedway to be a showplace for the American automobile. Mark your calendar for next year’s event. You won’t regret it.
Great news! The Indianapolis Motor Speedway recently announced that the Celebration of Automobiles is expanding for 2012. Everyone I know thoroughly enjoyed the celebration last year. This year’s event will feature three events in one track wide celebration. The celebration scheduled for Saturday, May 12, expands on the original mission of the Speedway to be a showplace for the American automobile.
The Vintage and Historic Car Show, last year’s inaugural event featuring cars from 1920-1970, continues as the keystone Celebration of Automobiles event. Another existing May event, the Emerging Tech Showcase, is integrated into the celebration. The new event is the Automobile Festival, featuring current and late model vehicles, plus automotive performance and accessory companies.
The Vintage and Historic Car Show will gather 200 automobiles produced by manufacturers participating in the Indianapolis 500 during the 1920-1970 era and other significant manufacturers around the Pagoda Plaza area. The cars around the plaza should be some of the best from the collectible car universe. If it’s anything like last year’s event, this will be the chance of a lifetime to see many of these autos.
A Jackson Touring Car and a Stutz Bearcat on view
at the Celebration of Automobiles
Copyright © 2011 Dennis E. Horvath
The Emerging Tech Showcase features activities showing the future of automotive sustainability. Events inside the showcase are the Purdue Collegiate evGrand Prix, which students form colleges and universities race their electric-powered karts on a course near the IMS Hall of Fame Museum; the EV Rally, which allows owners of electric cars to participate and drive a lap around the track; and the Electric-Powered Manufacturer Ride and Drive, where interested customers can take these cars on a lap around the Speedway.
The new Automobile Festival features hundreds of current and late model vehicles displayed inside of Turn 4. Domestic and import sports, muscle, and pony cars are scheduled for display. Automotive aftermarket and accessory companies will display high performance autos in the car corral.
This year’s Celebration of Automobiles promises to be an event for all to remember. The event takes place from 9 am to 6 pm, on May 12, Opening Day for the 96th running of the Indianapolis 500. I know that with all of the great cars around the plaza, it will take some planning to experience the other events around the speedway. So, start planning your experience now. Who knows? Maybe I’ll see you there.