Maserati, a marque renowned for its racing greats, road cars, elegance and sporting performance, takes center stage at the 64th annual Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance. The event will be held on Sunday, August 17, at The Lodge at Pebble Beach.
Additional 2014 features range from rainbow-hued Ruxtons and antique steamers to the elegant coachwork of Fernandez et Darrin, innovative Tatras, postwar Rolls-Royce Phantoms and fiery Ferrari 250 Testa Rossas.
“We’re just beginning to vet entry applications, and the range of features promises to be enticing,” said Sandra Button, Pebble Beach Concours Chairman. “I’m also really looking forward to working with Maserati to showcase the very best of their race and road cars.
“The history of this marque is entwined with the history of this Concours. Maseratis were often in the mix in the early Pebble Beach Road Races in the 1950s, and, to the surprise of many classic car enthusiasts, a Maserati Mistral Coupé took top honors as Best of Show at the Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance in 1968. It was the most recent postwar car to do so.”
The Maserati brothers focused for decades on building potent single seaters that could (and did) win races, racking up early victories in fierce competitions such as the Targa Florio and the Tripoli Grand Prix. The marque went on to record the only wins by an Italian manufacturer at the Indianapolis 500 and to garner the world championship in 1957 with Juan Manuel Fangio at the helm of a 250F. Models for regular road use were added to the Maserati lineup in the 1940s, and the marque soon began to pair with designers like Pininfarina and Giugiaro to create luxury cars with great power and finesse.
Other features at the 2014 Pebble Beach Concours include the following:
Ruxton: An innovative automobile born of the dreams of two men — a brilliant engineer and a manipulative business mogul — who sought to bring a revolutionary front-drive vehicle into production at the start of the Great Depression. Of the estimated 96 cars manufactured, just 17 working examples remain, and a record number of them will gather together at the forthcoming Pebble Beach Concours.
Ferrari 250 Testa Rossa: These spirited racecars ruled the track from their introduction in 1957 through 1960, and they are now among the most desired collector cars. They will gather en masse at Pebble Beach before hitting the road on a reunion rally.
Fernandez et Darrin Coachwork: Years before American-born designer Howard Darrin developed the styling cue that became his signature — the Darrin “Dip,” wherein the beltline tapers down across the door before rising with the fenders — he paired with Argentinean-born financier J. Fernandez to create a series of salon-winning creations in Paris.
Steam Cars: Steam power was well developed long before the internal combustion engine was perfected, so many of the earliest cars were steam driven — and steam technology had strong adherents well into the 1920s. Several steam pioneers will take to the show field this year.
Tatra: This Czechoslovakian marque, one of the oldest auto manufacturers in the world, built cars that were unique in look and function. Chief engineer Hans Ledwinka was an early proponent of air-cooled engines, a rigid backbone chassis and independent suspension. Under his guidance, working in tandem with aerodynamicist and Graf Zeppelin designer Paul Jaray, Tatra built the world’s first truly aerodynamic production car, the Type 77, which presaged vehicles like the Bugatti Atlantic and the Volkswagen Beetle.
Rolls-Royce Phantom Postwar: After World War II, the few independent British coachbuilders who remained in business relied on Rolls-Royce and its customers for orders. The first Phantom IV went to then-Princess Elizabeth and the Duke of Edinburgh in 1950, and orders from other royals and heads of state followed. Most agree styling reached its zenith with the Phantom V, introduced in 1959, and by the late 1960s the Phantom VI was the only chassis still made for custom coachwork. In 1991 the last Phantom built, a landaulet, was delivered to the Sultan of Brunei.
Eastern European Motorcycles will also be featured.
A current listing of all car classes planned for the 2014 Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance is posted online here. Entry applications were due in January and are now being vetted by the Concours Selection Committee. The full committee meets in March to determine which cars will be invited to appear on the Concours show field. If you have a great car that you have not yet entered but still hope the committee will consider, please send a brief description of your car to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Go to www.pebblebeachconcours.net for additional information about the 2014 Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance and all of the events of Pebble Beach Automotive Week.