HomeEventsRear view: 3 — ‘New’ was a theme in 2021

Rear view: 3 — ‘New’ was a theme in 2021

New car shows and new venues and even a new auction company


While a lot of events were canceled or postponed in 2020 by the coronavirus pandemic, many were renewed in 2021, which a bunch of new events were launched, including a new off-road racing series for electric vehicles. And several events that were not new were staged on new dates.

Collector car auction companies also visited new venues, and in addition to new online auction companies sprouting up, what appears to be a major player in high-end and live collector car auctions was created when former RM-Sotheby’s staffers announced the Broad Arrow Group late in the year.

Among events moving to new dates in 2021 were Retromobile, from February to June, and the Amelia Island Concours d’Elegance, from March to late May.

Arizona Auction Week split, some auctions taking place, as usual, in January, but with Worldwide Auctioneers doing its sale back home in Indiana and with Barrett-Jackson delaying its Scottsdale showcase event until March. Mecum’s annual motorcycle auction in Las Vegas shifted from January to May. 

Speaking of Barrett-Jackson and Mecum, the former took its show on the road to Houston for the first time and moved its annual auction in Las Vegas from fall to mid-summer. Meanwhile, the later held a new collector car auction at Tulsa and another new one in conjunction with the Chattanooga Motoring Festival.

While not a new event, the second Las Vegas Concours d’Elegance found a new and well-received location, the Las Vegas Ballpark.

Bonhams did an auction in a new venue, the Audrain Concours in Rhode Island and RM-Sotheby’s staged its first sale in Switzerland.

In the Detroit area, the Motor Bella event replaced the traditional North American International Auto Show, and the Woodward Dream Show and the American Speed Festival made their debuts at the M1 Concourse, and there was a new Detroit 4Fest off-pavement event. On the West Coast, the Velocity Invitational made its debut at WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca. 

An entire new off-road and electric-powered racing series debuted in the form of Extreme E, which attracted several teams with big-name owners (Andretti, Rosberg, Ganassi, Sainz, Button, Hamilton) and with races staged in locations to draw attention to fragile environments and climate change.

Speaking of racing, autonomously driven Indy cars made their debut, and at no less a venue than the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, which also was the location for the inaugural Porsche Sportscar Together Festival.

Already, new events are being launched in 2022, including the Motorcar Cavalcade in south Florida and the Savile Row concours in London.

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 ClassicCars.com, 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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