HomeCar CultureRoth ‘Rat Fink’ exhibit extended

Roth ‘Rat Fink’ exhibit extended

Our weekly roundup of car museum news and notes


Because the National Corvette Museum was closed for nearly 3 months by the coronavirus pandemic, it has announced that it will extend its “Cartoon Creatures, Kustom Kars and Corvettes: The Art and Influence of Ed ‘Big Daddy’ Roth” exhibit through April 2021.

The exhibit was co-curated by former Chevrolet Corvette chief designer Tom Peters, who was influenced in his design work by Roth’s creations, and showcases the automotive revolution that took place from the late 1950s into the mid-’60s and inspired a generation of car enthusiasts, Peters among them.

The exhibit also will be featured August 20-22 when the East Coast Rat Fink Reunion is scheduled to take place at the museum.

Granatelli exhibit opens at Indy

One of the most endearing moments in the amazing history of the Indianapolis Motor Speedway occurred in 1969 when car owner Andy Granatelli greeted 500-winner Mario Andretti in the Winner’s Circle with an exuberant kiss on the cheek. 

On August 1, the Indianapolis Motor Speedway Museum opens its next exhibit, “Granatelli: Larger Than Life” to share the story of “racing’s most colorful promoter.”

“The Granatelli brothers were a true rags-to-riches, ‘American dream’ story,” the museum notes. “Andy, his older brother, Joe, and younger sibling, Vince, grew up in a tough Chicago neighborhood, yet the trio were automotive entrepreneurs before their teenage years, providing service on cold winter days.

“The brothers soon would promote races at Chicago’s Soldier Field, barnstorm across the Midwest fair circuit with an auto thrill show, and eventually build the family business, Grancor, into a multimillion-dollar powerhouse.” 

Andy Granatelli also would turn STP, as in STP Oil Treatment, into a popular product and major motorsports sponsor.

“Granatelli: Larger Than Life” runs through June 20 at the museum.

Aston Martin Museum re-opens

Inside the Aston Martin museum | Museum photo

The Aston Martin Museum at Wallingford, England, has re-opened, though with restrictions because of the coronavirus threat. Up to 8 people will be allowed for each 45-minute time slot and must come from the same family or “social bubble.” Masks will not be required, though a strict “no touching” policy will be in place.

For more information, visit the museum’s Eventbrite page.

Mullin Museum offers new video series

The Mullin Automotive Museum has launched a new video series that features the engines in cars from its collection. The series began with a look at the engine in a 1994 Bugatti EB 110 Supersport Le Mans.

A new video will be released each Friday at noon Pacific time. Next up (today) is the 1937 Talbot-Lago T150-C SS “Goutte d’Eau.”

Drive-in movies at LeMay

LeMay – America’s Car Museum in Tacoma, Washington, offers a series of drive-in movie presentations in August, beginning August 1 with Frozen II. Also scheduled are Bumblebee (August 8), Toy Story 4 (August 15) and Raiders of the Lost Ark (August 22). The movies will be shown in the Haub Family Field. For more information, visit the museum website.

Seeing Red

Howard Koby, a familiar name to regular readers of this website, has done a terrific feature story for Hagerty Media on the Red Room at the Haynes International Motor Museum in England, where more than 40 sports cars — all in red — are on display. 

‘Red Dot’ honors for Honda

Fireblade and Honda e on display at Red Dot museum | Honda photo

The Honda e compact electric vehicle and the CBR1000RR-R Fireblade SP superbike are being included in the “Milestones in Contemporary Design” exhibition at the Red Dot Design Museum in Essen, Germany.  

The exhibition features 76 new products being presented as the best in current international product design.

“Honda e was designed to create a new relationship between people, society and the car, whilst incorporating Honda’s future vision,” said Makoto Iwaki, executive creative director for Honda e.

“Honda is facing the challenges [of urban mobility] through fantastic research and development work to find the right solution for the future,” added Peter Zec, founder of the Red Dot Design Award. “I think the Honda e stands for a kind of paradigm shift: we are not just talking about e-mobility, we are talking about new solutions in the digital world and Honda e fits perfectly into this scenery. 

“It connects your home with mobility, it is a real smart product and it goes far beyond our imagination. I don’t know any other car that can achieve this at the moment.”

2-for-1 admission in South Bend

From August 1-8, a special “Tourist in Your Own City” admission offer is being made by the Studebaker National Museum and the adjacent This History Museum in South Bend, Indiana. Buy one admission and visit both museums.

Special events this weekend

The British Motor Museum at Gaydon hosts its Land Rover Show August 1-2 and also has announced that beginning August 1, the museum will be open every day of August after being awarded “We’re Good to Go” status by VisitEngland, meaning it has been judged to be safe for visiting despite the ongoing coronavirus threat.

The AACA Museum in Hershey, Pennsylvania, will host a cruise-in car show from 9 a.m. until 2 p.m. on August 2. Registered car owners will receive lunch, museum admission and a museum hat. Also featured will be valve-cover races “for kids of all ages.” To register, visit the museum website.

It’s Muscles & Mojo from 7 a.m. until 9 a.m. on August 3 at the Murphy Auto Museum in Oxnard, California, where free Hot Wheels will be presented to those participating in the cars and coffee-style gathering. The museum will showcase at the event several of its cars and a vintage trailer display.

If the thermometer outside the Mercedes-Benz Museum in Germany shows 20 degrees (that’s 20C, which is 68 degrees F) on any Sunday from August 2 – September 13, admission will be free, the museum has announced.

Mark your calendar

The RV/MH Hall of Fame (that’s RV/MH as in Recreation Vehicle/Motor Home) in Elkhart, Indiana, holds its Hall of Fame induction ceremony on August 3.

Youngsters ages 5-13 can take part in the Porsche Museum’s annual “Car Factory” summer program August 4-23 in Stuttgart, Germany. The program is offered in German and English and offered insight to automobile production.

The National Corvette Museum in Bowling Green, Kentucky, offers “The Corvette Experience” beginning August 7. For $799, visitors can drive a new C8-generation Corvette Stingray Z51 around the 3.2-mile, 23-turn road course. It’s a lead-follow format that includes classroom instruction, track time, lunch and a museum tour. You must be 18 years of age or older to participate. The program also will be offered August 23, September 3, 10 and 18, October 9 and 16 and November 13. For information, visit the NCM Motorsports Park website.

The Mustang Owner’s Museum in Concord, North Carolina, now anticipates re-opening on August 7, pending state approval. The museum also plans to organize a cruise to the Holman-Moody shop on August 29. 

The British Motor Museum at Gaydon hosts an electric vehicles festival car show on August 8 and a classics and vintage commercial vehicle show on August 8-9.

The Petersen Automotive Museum in Los Angeles stages its virtual version of Monterey Car Week from August 12-16. Visit the museum website for more information.

The National Corvette Museum hosts the East Coast Rat Fink Reunion August 20-22 in conjunction with the museum’s “Cartoon Creatures, Kustom Kars and Corvettes: The Art and Influence of Ed ‘Big Daddy’ Roth” exhibition, which has been extended through April 2021.

The British Motor Museum at Gaydon hosts the Old Ford Rally on August 23, but the Buses Festival planned for that same date has been postponed.

The Mustang Owners Museum in Concord, North Carolina, is organizing The Carolina Cruise on September 5, when a 14-mile stretch of Highway 29 will become the site of a rolling car show.

The AACA Museum in Hershey, Pennsylvania, opens two new exhibits on September 12 — “Yeah, It’s Got a Hemi!” and “Minibike Mania.”

The Miles Through Time museum in Clarkesville, Georgia, plans a “Cruise-In to the Museum” from 10 a.m. until 6 p.m. on September 12.

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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