The Rodeo Drive Concours d’Elegance in sweet Beverly Hills. Home of “swimming pools and movie stars”… and a lot of really cool cars… especially on Father’s Day!
So, we hit the 26th annual event that’s grown into a multi-generational outdoor viewing automobile extravaganza that’s somehow getting bigger every year.
“Enthusiasts from all over California come to proudly showcase their cars with over 35,000 visitors a year.”
For instance, the Rodeo Drive Concours is the largest public event held annually in Beverly Hills. Enthusiasts from all over California come to proudly showcase their cars with over 35,000 visitors a year.
The automobiles were lined along the iconic Rodeo Drive in the heart of Los Angeles and displayed for auto-enthusiasts of all kinds to appreciate up close.
We had the chance to talk with some of the stars of the show, including Dana Graham from Palos Verdes, California.
The 1932 Chrysler Imperial at the Rodeo Drive Concours d’Elegance
iDriveSoCal: Dana, what brings you out here today?
Dana Graham: Oh it’s my favorite show. It’s great too because it’s not a “judge” show. It’s just people who are interested in cars, and you get to talk to them. You would never have the chance to see some of these cars if it weren’t for this show today, so it’s really nice.
iDSC: And what are you showcasing at this fine event today?
DG: This is a 1932 Chrysler Imperial.
iDSC: Very nice. What makes this car special?
DG: Well, it’s a very rare car. There’s only five of them in the world, and this is one of them.
iDSC: Only five of them? Why is that?
“Most of them were melted down and made into bombs during World War ll.”
DG: They only made 157 of these, which is not many at all. Most of them were melted down and made into bombs during World War ll.
iDSC: Wow, that’s incredible. So this one managed to stick around.
DG: Yes, and it was restored in 1974. It was originally owned by MGM studios. I think they used it to take the movie stars around to different shooting locations.
The 1966 Baja Beetle at the Rodeo Drive Concours d’Elegance
As we continued to walk around the Rodeo Drive Concours d’Elegance, we saw cars of all kinds- those that probably once did chauffeur around celebrities, to cars that look like they could be in a summer blockbuster, like Raul Contreras’ Beetle.
iDriveSoCal: What brought you out here today, Raul?
Raul Contreras: Bruce Meyer, who owns The Petersen Automotive Museum actually called me and asked me if I would bring my car and another vehicle.
iDSC: I can certainly see why. Tell us about your car here.
RC: This is Roxanne from the Zombie Patrol. It’s a 1966 Baja Beetle that I’ve converted into a Zombie killing machine.
iDSC: Wow! This is very cool. What gave you the idea to do this? I imagine it turns some heads…
“There’s no other car like this. Nobody else has VWs with machine guns on it.”
RC: It just came completely from my imagination. The cool thing is that there’s only one of these. There’s no other car like this. Nobody else has VWs with machine guns on it. The reception and the number of people that seem to love this car have been really amazing.
The 1961 Chevy Parkwood Station Wagon at the Rodeo Drive Concours d’Elegance
While some participants went for the Hollywood theatrics, others just did some good old restoration to a classic, like Keith Gurnick from Beverly Hills.
iDriveSoCal: What are you displaying for the folks here today, Keith?
Keith Gurnick: This is my 1961 Chevy Parkwood Station Wagon.
iDSC: And what makes this car special?
KG: Absolutely nothing. I can’t even believe they let me be in this show. There’s nothing special about this car except we put in air conditioning, power steering, power brakes, bigger wheels, custom wheels, bigger engine, bucket seats, center console, mirrors, and it now has a new beautiful paint job.
iDSC: It’s a beautiful car and a great addition to the show. What do you like best about this car show?
“Well number one, the money from this event goes to help the fire and police- so that’s awesome.”
KG: Well number one, the money from this event goes to help the fire and police- so that’s awesome. I also live and work close by, so I thought it would be fun to go. I’m seeing a lot of people that I know here, which is really fun.
The Bentleys at the Rodeo Drive Concours d’Elegance
So, this year, the event also celebrated 100 legendary years of British marque Bentley, which is world-renowned as one of the foremost builders of luxury grand-tourers and SUVs. It showcased some of the rarest and most historic Bentley vehicles in the world.
Rodeo Drive Concours d’Elegance certainly did a wonderful job of rolling out the (figurative) red carpet and giving these cars their well-deserved moment in the spotlight.
Therefore, if you are at all a car enthusiast and looking for a great car show to attend, we highly recommend that you go next year to the 27th Annual Rodeo Drive Concours d’Elegance.