Former F1 racing champion Nigel Mansell staged an indoor driving exhibition Sunday on the quarter-mile long Grand Avenue within the fifth annual London Classic Car Show at the ExCeL.
A record crowd of nearly 40,000 people were drawn to see some of the best of the 700 vehicles on display paraded along the Grand Avenue during the course of the show, promoters announced.
The similar Los Angeles Classic Car Show is scheduled for March 2-4 at the LA Convention Center, where 1,000 vehicles are expected with featured exhibits of 70 years of Porsche, Citroens from the Mullin Museum, hot rods, lowriders, classic Japanese cars, vintage Jeeps and 4x4s and a Women ’n Wheels panel discussion.
In London, Mansell spun the wheels on the Jaguar E-type-inspired Eagle Speedster when he arrived at the show. Later in the day, he drove a front-engine Dino-powered Ferrari Grand Prix racer from the late 1940s, and then the 1993 Benetton-Ford B193 that was raced by Michael Schumacher.
The show also included a display of Mansell-driven cars, including a 1977 Crossle 32F and his F1-championship Williams-Renault FW14.
“I’ve got to say that I’ve been pleasantly surprised at just how great this London show is,” Mansell was quoted in a news release. “It’s always wonderful to see some of my old racing cars and to meet the fans – and they have been absolutely brilliant. To drive cars indoors was pretty special, too – I’ve had a lot of fun and I hope those who came to see me, and the show, enjoyed themselves as much as I did.”
The highlight of the show Saturday was actor Phillip Glenister “firing up” the Audi quattro he drove in the Ashes of Ashes television series. Glenister curated a gallery of famous “getaway cars” for the show.
Morgan used the show to unveil its latest +4 Club Sport a street-legal racer, and Lister debuted its Thunder, a 666-horsepower supercar.
The show’s special feature is its Grand Avenue, where over the course of the four-day event some 60 vehicles were paraded for everyone to see.
The show was held in conjunction with Historic Motorsport International, an adjacent gathering showcasing the UK’s role in vintage auto racing.
The 2019 London Classic Car Show is scheduled for February 14-17.