HomeNews and EventsPetersen celebrates Zora Arkus-Duntov

Petersen celebrates Zora Arkus-Duntov


With the 2020 Chevrolet Corvette finally being unveiled in the mid-engine architecture he wanted decades ago, the Petersen Automotive Museum in Los Angeles plans a two-day celebration July 27-28 of the life and work of former Corvette chief engineer Zora Arkus-Duntov.

The event also will provide people with an opportunity to see one of the 2020 Corvettes in person, the museum said. 

Arkux-Duntov pointed the way toward a mid-engine Corvette

At 6:30 p.m. on July 27, the Sportsman VIP Night reception “will feature an exclusive and unique Corvette display, along with gourmet food provided by Drago Ristorante and one-of-a-kind opportunities to network with Corvette experts and Corvette community VIPs,” the museum promises, adding that those in attendance will receive a special Chevrolet Corvette book.

Beginning at 7:30 a.m. on July 28, the museum will stage the Constellation Rally on a route from Pasadena to the Petersen.  

“Three iconic Corvettes from the Petersen collection will take part in the rally,” the museum said in its announcement, “including a beautiful silver 1961 Corvette which will lead participants on the course. “

At 9 a.m. at the museum, Arkus-Duntov’s life as a racing driver and engineer will be discussed in a presentation featuring Harley Earl III and Corvette Racing team manager Doug Fehan.

Museum cars heading to Monterey Car Week

Ed ‘Big Daddy’ Roth’s ‘Outlaw’ custom will be on the show field at Pebble Beach | Museum photos

The Petersen, and the Mullin Automotive Museum as well, announced the list of cars they will be taking to Monterey Car Week in August. 

The Petersen will showcase seven Hollywood star cars and hot rods while the Mullin will take half a dozen vehicles from its facility in Oxnard, California, to the Monterey Peninsula.

“Monterey Car Week is one of the centerpieces of the automotive world, and its luxurious events are a perfect opportunity to share this group of Hollywood hero cars and timeless customs with the public outside of the museum,” Terry Karges, executive director of the Petersen, was quoted in the museum’s news release.

On August 16, the Petersen will display the DeLorean from Back to the Future, the Batmobile from the 1989 movie, the 1999 Mach 5 Prototype inspired by Speed Racer, the 1998 Volkswagen Bettle “Shagmobile” from Austin Powers: The Spy Who Shagged Me, the Herbie the Love Bug VW Bettle driven by Lindsay Lohan in Herbie: Fully Loaded and the “Greased Lightning” 1946 Ford from the movie musical Grease.

Then, on August 18, the Petersen will display the 1959 Outlaw custom built by Ed “Big Daddy” Roth as part of the Historic Hot Rod Cover Cars class at the Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance.

Bugatti Type 57C Aravis headlines Mullin cars going to Monterey | Museum photos
1950 Talbot-Lago Type 26 Grand Prix

Headlining the Mullin cars going to Monterey are a one-of-a-kind 1939 Bugatti Type 57C Aravis made for racer Maurice Trintingant, a 1937 Delahaye Type 145 Chapron coupe and a 1929 Talbot M75 Million Guiet coupe.

“We’ve selected some of the finest and most unique automobiles in the museum collection to bring to Monterey this year,” said Peter Mullin. “Monterey Car Week is a perfect opportunity to share the beauty and power of these exquisite machines with the public outside of a museum setting. We’re excited for this year’s showcase and hope that attendees of these events will be ecstatic as well.”

The museum will enter two cars — a 1936 Talbot-Lago Type 26 SS Grand Prix roadster and a 1950 Talbot-Lago Type 26 Grand Prix — in the Rolex Monterey Motorsports Reunion that runs from August 14-17 at Laguna Seca. The ’36 version was originally done by Figoni and Falaschi and later was updated by the Chappe Brothers. It raced at Le Mans in 1939.

The museum will display its 1931 Bugatti Type 49 at The Quail event and its 1939 Bugatti Aravis, 1929 Talbot and 1937 Delahaye at Pebble Beach.

Speaking of Monterey Car Week, the California Automobile Museum in Sacramento will stage its annual Monterey Car Week Cruise-In to Pacific Grove on August 13 for the Classic Motorsports Magazine car show.

Steph Jeavons on Rhonda the Honda’s around-the-world adventure | Museum photo

Globetrotting Honda on display at Beaulieu

Rhonda the Honda, the 2013 Honda CRF250L that Steph Jeavons rode on her 74,000-mile, 4-year, solo around-the-world adventure is on display as part of The Motorcycle Story exhibit at the National Motor Museum in Beaulieu, England. 

Jeavons became the first Briton to ride a motorcycle on all seven continents. She visited 54 countries during her tour.

The two-wheeler “wears its battle scars with pride, still bearing the stickers from its epic journey and a stone guard bearing the names of all of the countries it has visited,” the museum noted. “The journey took in some of the longest and highest roads and tested the Honda’s reliability to the limit. 

“Yet despite its light weight in contrast to the heavier, larger capacity motorbikes usually favored for long-distance adventures, the 249cc Honda proved to be very reliable. Steph suffered from just four punctures in four years, with only a broken sub-frame in Indonesia and a faulty starter relay in Tanzania to slow her down.”

As for Jeavons herself, she “politely refused six marriage proposals” during her ride.

Indy museum sets Schumacher shop tour

Registration remains open for an Indianapolis Motor Speedway Museum road trip on August 20 when the museum’s Shop Tour Series visits Don Schumacher Racing, the winningest team in National Hot Rod Association drag racing history. The shop is located in Brownsburg, Indiana, some 20 minutes west of the Speedway. 

There will be two tours, one at 9:30 a.m. and the other at 2 p.m.

To sign up, email [email protected].

1964 Studebaker took second place in 2019 Great Race | Museum photo

Great Race runner-up at LeMay

With the Great Race 2019 finishing recently at LeMay – America’s Car Museum in Tacoma, Washington, the museum made arrangements for the runner-up finisher in the expert division to go on display through January 2020.

The car is a 1964 Studebaker Daytona coupe owned by Steve and Janet Hedke who, with their daughter Allison, have been Great Race participants since 2000.

Special events this weekend

It’s Drive-In Movie Night from 7:30 p.m. until 11 p.m. at the California Automobile Museum in Sacramento, where the featured film is Homeward Bound.

The Petersen Automotive Museum has opened a new exhibition, “Uncompromised Design,” featuring mid-engine Porsche vehicles. The exhibit runs through March 31, 2020.

Del Boy’s Reliant Regal | Museum photo by Samantha Cook

Also recently opened is a special exhibition of TV and film cars at the National Motor Museum in Beaulieu, England. Among the vehicles included are the Jaguar XKR from Die Another Day and the 3-wheeled Del Boy’s Reliant Regal Supervan from Only Fools and Horses. 

The Simeone Foundation Automotive Museum in Philadelphia features “The Stevens Trophy — American Performance” as the theme for its Demo Day from noon until 3 p.m. on July 27. Cars taking part will be a 1928 Auburn 8-88 boat-tail speedster, 1928 Stutz BB Black Hawk speedster, 1933 Auburn V12 12-165 speedster and 1929 dePont Model G speedster.

It’s the 31st annual Mopars at the Red Barns car show and swap meet, July 27 from 9 a.m. until 4 p.m. at the Gilmore Car Museum in Hickory Corners, Michigan. 

The AACA Museum in Hershey, Pennsylvania, hosts a special presentation by Larry Clark, “Tucker Talk — The Tucker Business Model: Why the Feds Went After Preston Tucker (and why they failed), from 1 p.m. to 2 p.m. on July 27.

Starting at 5:45 p.m. on July 27 and running until 8 a.m. the following morning, youngsters ages 10-13 can spend the night at the BMW Museum in Germany. Among the activities scheduled will be moviemaking, with the young visitors shooting their own short films with the help of a stop-motion app, and then they’ll watch their flicks on a big screen while enjoying popcorn and beverages.

The Britain’s National Motor Museum at Beaulieu celebrates the 50th anniversary of the Nissan GT-4 and the 30th birthday of the Mazda MX-5 at its Simply Japanese cars how on July 28.

Mark your calendar

A celebration of life remembering the late Kenneth Behring, founder of the Blackhawk Museum, will be held at 4 p.m. July 31 at the museum in Danville, California. The museum will be closed that day prior to the memorial.

LeMay – America’s Car Museum in Tacoma, Washington, hosts “Cars & Cigars Miami Nights” on August 2.

Book cover

Autobooks-Aerobooks in Burbank, California, hosts George Levy, author with Pete Biro of F1 Mavericks: The Men and Machines that Revolutionized Formula 1 Racing from 10 a.m. until 2 p.m. on August 2.

On August 3, the British Motor Museum will be the site of the Classic Mini Mosaic world-record attempt that is expected to draw more than 600 classic Minis. The following day, the museum will be the site of the National Metro & Mini Show.

Electric supercars will be featured August 3-4 when the National Motor Museum at Beaulieu hosts its Supercar Weekend. EV Evolution will be a new feature at the show, which also expects several hundred petroleum-powered exotic machines. 

The Gilmore Car Museum in Hickory Corners, Michigan, stages its annual Red Barns Spectacular car show on August 3. More than 1,200 vehicles are expected, including special displays by the Tin Can Tourists and of antique boats and bicycles, as well as 380 swap-meet vendors.

For the final day of its microcars exhibit, the California Automobile Museum in Sacramento will offer free admission from 10 a.m. until noon on August 4.

The BMW Museum in Germany offers special tours of BMW Group Classic daily except Mondays from August 6-30. Normally closed except on Saturdays, the Classic section will be open for guided tours at 2 p.m. (in German) and at 4 p.m. (in English). 

August 9-11 is VW T Chill Weekend at the National Motor Museum in Beaulieu, England, where VW Transporter owners will be camping out in their vehicles. The weekend includes a cruise to Buckler’s Head and other family-oriented activities.

David Hobbs and Will Buxton will take part in the Demo Day scheduled for August 10 at the Simeone Foundation Automotive Museum in Philadelphia. Hobbs will sign his book, Hobbo: Motor Racer, Motor Mouth and Buxton will autograph his My Greatest Defeat, a collection of insights from 20 racing drivers.

Team O’Neilll rally car

As part of its Rally Car exhibit, the North East Motor Sports Museum in Loudon, New Hampshire, will host Tim O’Neil, rally champion and founder of the Team O’Neil Rally School, who will discuss the history of rallying, talk about how to become involved and will do a walk-around featuring a rally car from 1 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. on August 11.  

August 14 is the deadline to submit a pledge toward the effort by the Studebaker National Museum in South Bend, Indiana, to bid on the 1931 Hunt-Jenkins Special Indy racer that will be offered for sale at Gooding & Company’s Pebble Beach auction. Pledges can be submitted by email to [email protected].

The AACA Museum in Hershey, Pennsylvania, stages its Cars 4 Critters show on August 17 from 8:30 a.m. until 10:30 a.m. featuring sports and exotic cars and raising money for Speranza Animal Rescue.

The National Motor Museum at Beaulieu, England, hosts its inaugural “Simply Mercedes” on August 18.

The British Motor Museum stages its sixth “Buses Festival” on August 18, with visitors exploring around 100 restored, vintage and modern buses, even riding on routes around the Gaydon area.

The National Corvette Museum Motorsports Park in Bowling Green, Kentucky, celebrates its fifth anniversary August 19-20 with special high-performance drivers education programs.

The California Automobile Museum in Sacramento stages a launch part for its “British Invasion” exhibition from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. on August 22.

The National Corvette Museum in Bowling Green, Kentucky, inducts racer Briggs Cunningham, Corvette designer Tom Peters, and Dollie Cole, Corvette enthusiast and widow of former GM president Ed Cole, into its hall of fame on August 30.

The Indianapolis Motor Speedway Museum hosts the second act of its “From Dirt Tracks to the Brickyard” interactive panel discussion on September 3. From 4 p.m. to 6 p.m., Mel and Don Kenyon, Chad Boat, Michael Pickens, Chris Windom and historian Pat Sullivan will discuss U.S. Auto Club racing history and current storylines.

“Golden Oldies” will be featured September 7-8 at the International Autojumble at the National Motor Museum of England at Beaulieu. The category is open to pre-1970 classic and vintage vehicles. This is the first time such cars will be featured at the jumble. 

Vintage trucks at Gaydon | Museum photo

The British Motor Museum at Gaydon hosts the ninth annual Retro Truck Show on September 7-8 and expects around 400 classic and modern trucks produced between 1970 and 2000 to be displayed

“Legends of Speed,” a showcase of nearly two dozen historic racing cars, opens November 2 at the Phoenix Art Museum.

Does your local car museum have special events or exhibitions planned? Let us know. Email [email protected].

Larry Edsall
Larry Edsall
A former daily newspaper sports editor, Larry Edsall spent a dozen years as an editor at AutoWeek magazine before making the transition to writing for the web and becoming the author of more than 15 automotive books. In addition to being founding editor at, Larry has written for The New York Times and The Detroit News and was an adjunct honors professor at the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication at Arizona State University.


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