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Bromley, 08 June 2014

The Bromley Pageant of Motoring is billed as the largest one day classic car show in the world, and with around 3000 classic vehicle, plus a number of “modern classics” and motorcycles, it can certainly stake a valid claim to the title. A beautiful sunny and warm early summer’s day greeted participants and visitors alike, to the vast expanse of grass that is Norman Park in Bromley, Kent, just to the south of London.

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The event is truly a family orientated gathering, centred around a massive array of classic cars, with plenty of entertainment to keep all ages happy, mostly located close to the central arena, which hosted drive-pasts of various car groups and clubs during the day, together with spectacular high flying motorcycle stunt rider demonstrations. There was also live music, a classic motorcycle display, classic commercial vehicles, a trade sales and autojumble area, so a vast amount of things to see and do during the course of the day.

The cars on display ranged from what might describe as “everyday” classics, like Morris Minors, VW Beetles and Minis, through “Golden Oldies” like a Model T Ford, a 1929 Buick, a 1935 Wolseley from Fife in Scotland, where it has resided all its life, to custom cars and a wide selection of sports cars, ranging from a vast array of Mazda MX-5s, a number of Triumph Spitfires, to Aston Martins, Ferraris, Porsches and Lamborghini. There was a Kit Car Club display, which featured original styled cars, along with mainly Toyota MR2 based clones of Ferraris and Lamborghinis. When one looks at them with a passing glance, they could be taken for the real thing, especially if they were moving down the street, but the overriding thought is that they must cost a fortune to produce, and all that you have at the end of the day is a replica. One might say that it is the bottom end of the Ferrari 250 GT SWB and GTO replica market, but at least they have proper original Ferrari running gear.

Fortunately there were examples of the real thing, with a number of Ferraris around the displays, ranging from Dino 308 GT4s, through 308, 328, 348, 355 and 430 models to a 599 GTB Fiorano HGTE. The Aston Martin display was very impressive, and it included a pair of 1934 Mk II Tourers, one in short chassis form, and the other in long chassis form, together with examples of DB4, DB5 and DB6, through to more modern variants from the seventies to today. Sporting Ford models like the Mexico, RS2000 and Escort Cosworth were plentiful, as were Mitsubishi Evos and Subaru Imprezas.There was a good selection of American fins and chrome, plus their British equivalent from the sixties, the Vauxhall Velox and Cresta models, and the Ford Consuls, Zephyrs and Zodiacs.

Amongst the more unusual cars, the Jensen marque was well represented, with a number of examples of the Interceptor and its FF cousin, plus a pair of CV8s and a lone Jensen-Healey. The Classic Renault display featured a varied selection, ranging from the humble R4 and R6 models, through to Alpine models, including a pretty “hot” French Blue Dauphine that had come across from France, along with an attractive Calberson liveried Alpine A310 V6 and a lurid metallic orange A610 Evolution. The show fields were so vast that a day was not enough to really absorb, or to see, everything, as there were some real rarities tucked away incongruously, like a rarely seen Turner, or a Fairthorpe Electron, a Triumph Spitfire based Hurricane, a Reliant Sabra prototype and the production Sabre Six, a row of Panther Limas, a pair of Marcos Mantis’, and the list goes on!

Keith Bluemel