Cadillac was the honored marque at the 2017 Hilton Head concours d’elegance held last weekend as the culmination of the Hilton Head Motoring Festival, a two-week celebration that includes vintage races in Savannah, Georgia, and a club-day car show the day before the concours.
Cadillacs filled three of the concours classes in a fine display of the great history of the brand. Not surprisingly, Best of Show honors went to one of those Caddys, a 1934 Cadillac Victoria convertible coupe owned by Steven Plunkett of Ontario, Canada.
There were other great cars at the concours as well, including the Chairman’s award-winning 1967 Ferrari 275 GTS/4 NART Spider shown by the Rare Wheels Collection of Windermere, Florida, as well as a stunning class-winning 1938 MG TA Pickford drophead coupe owned by Jim and Sue Wulf of Doylestown, Pennsylvania; a wonderful 1965 Iso Rivolta; a unbelievably rare 1957 induction-option Chevrolet Corvette; and a 1910 Thomas 670 Flyabout owned by Jim Grundy of Grundy Insurance.
Among such amazing cars, my favorite was the 1965 Mustang Fastback owned by Lawrence and Tees Booth. Why a Mustang? It turns out that this Mustang is, in fact, the very first production fastback constructed. The car had all original panels and was restored to a standard I have never seen on any Mustang fastback that was not a Shelby model.
Motorcycles are also a part of the Hilton Head Concours and this year included some of the rarest around. The standouts for me were the class-winning 1937 BMW R17 owned by Ted Main of Cheshire, Connecticut, and the Preservation class-winning1957 NSU Max owned by John Sandstorm of Norcross, Georgia.
The Saturday Car Club day at Hilton Head was by no means weak in its offerings. This is an innovative idea that Hilton Head started at concours events a number of years ago and that many other events have adopted. It makes the weekend more inclusive. My favorites were a Jensen Interceptor III and one of the finest 1970 Porsche 914/6 cars I have seen. This example was perfect in Signal Orange paint with ultra rare Mahle “Gas Burner” wheels.
To tie into the racing end of car collecting, Hilton Head also had a display called Life For 24 Hours. This was a display of Le Mans and Daytona race cars and was just fabulous. The two cars in this display that were standouts for me were the 2001 BMW M3 GTR that raced at Daytona and the Aston Martin International that raced at Le Mans in the 1930s.