Bristol Summer Classics – August 2011

This is a new event for 2011, and as such it was hard to know what to expect. I first picked up a leaflet earlier in the year and noted that it was to take place over 2 days, and with all manner of attractions of which classic cars were but one, thought it could be worth a look, especially as the venue, Easter Compton, is less than 5 miles from home. Summer event congestion meant that I was unable to attend on the Sunday, which as is usually the way of things would likely be the busier of the 2 days, but I was at home on the Saturday and so popped along to investigate. What I found was a relatively small collection of cars – some more interesting than others – a few rather non-descript trade stalls and not much else.


A rather nice Junior Zagato 1600.

This 1956 Sapphire is a local car, having been sold by the local dealer in Clifton, and it would seem never strayed that far before being rescued and renovated to leave it in the splendid condition in which it is now to be seen.

This is badged Austin Swallow, but is really the start of what became the Jaguar, as it was a modified Austin Seven.

A second generation Sprite.

This Isabella TS Coupe was one of the nicest cars at the event.

A 2CV, in limited edition Bourbon

A 55 Coupe

The three heavily customised Mark 2 Consuls were not something I wished to record for posterity, so no pictures. I did take a photo of this late model Anglia Super. This car had the larger, 1200cc engine, which endowed it with a 0 – 60 time of a heady 22 seconds!

The owner of this 1.6GL Escort Convertible bought it as a new car and has had it ever since. You don’t often see the non XR3 model convertibles and few in this condition.
There was also an RS Turbo.
The Minx was a popular family car in the 1950s.

The Super Minx first appeared in 1961 and was subject to frequent revisions, both to tidy up the styling and once the 1725cc engine was fitted, to give what was quite a heavy car a reasonable performance.
I saw this machine a few weeks ago, at the “Caring with Cars” event, and recalled that the owner had said that underneath the Rosso Corsa bodywork lurks a Triumph Spitfire chassis and engine.

This was one of the other kit cars on show.
One of the MX5s produced to celebrate Mazda’s success at le Mans.

A number of MGs, including the well loved MGA and MGB

There were a number of the popular Minor models on show.

A 1980 Marina 1.3 HL, in very period Snapdragon. Like many survivors of once popular family cars, this one had the rare automatic gearbox, and has only covered 42,000 miles in 30 years.  
A quartet of the diminutive Figaro models were on show.

A 1957 Savoy

1952 Chieftain, the mainstay of the Pontiac range for that year.

An example of the popular RM Series car

This is an American spec 3500S car, which spend its early life in California. All US market cars were fitted with automatic transmission, and badged 3500S, whereas in Europe, the S badge was reserved for the cars with a manual box.

This is a 2200SC model.
A pair of the Alpine sporting cars, showing the subtle changes from the early cars to one of the later ones.

There were example of each body style from the popular TR series, with TR3, TR5, TR6 and TR7 on show.

This 1978 TR7 is one of three cars that was created as a prize for a competition involving Pepsi-Cola and Levi Strauss. Amazingly, all three cars still exist. As well as the special paintwork, the cars featured seats with a denim inset, and a number of features such as air conditioning which were later made available on the regular cars.  
A lone Stag completed the Triumph display
An FC model Victor 101 Super, fitted with the rare Powerglide automatic transmission. There seem to be far fewer of this, the third generation Victor, than the two preceding models.

This 1984 Chevette is from the last batch of cars produced, and it looked like it had just come straight from the plant. In fact, it has covered 18,000 miles, and was purchased by its current owner a few months ago, when he came across it. He said that apart from having to replace the tyres and suspension, it did not even need much cleaning! Apparently there are over 500 members of the Chevette Owners Club, and many have more than one car. A lot of them are SORNed though, which is one reason why you rarely see what was once a common sight on our roads.
I gave all the heavily modified and customised Beetles and Type 2 the wide berth that they deserved, and focused instead on the few rather more original looking cars, which amounted to a couple of Beetles and a Type 3 Karmann Ghia.

An interesting event, which I am sure will be far better supported on the Sunday, especially if the sun actually shines. As it was, I was glad it was so close to home, as it only engaged me for around an hour. One to watch for 2012, but not necessarily to give the highest scheduling priority.
2011-08-17 16:10:51

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