Exceptional GP Bugattis in Maastricht

Exceptional GP Bugattis in Maastricht

From 11 to 13 January 2013, MECC Maastricht hosted the InterClassics & TopMobiel again, the biggest classic car event in the Benelux. The two leading themes were ‘100 Years of Aston Martin’ and ‘Bugatti Grand Prix Cars’.

Exclusively for the Bugatti Grand Prix Cars theme, the Bugatti T32 was brought in from France. The T32, kindly donated by the Musée National Schlumpf for the exhibition is a truly exceptional vehicle. Ettore Bugatti, the founder of Bugatti, designed the T32 for the 1923 Lyon Grand Prix. Never before had the principles of aerodynamics been applied in the automotive industry in this way. Bugatti based its designs on the aerofoil section of an airplane wing and designed a car with a similar shape to enhance its aerodynamics. Due to its unique appearance, the car was nicknamed ‘the tank’.

The Bugatti T32 was a fast vehicle, clocking in at 117 mph (188 km/h) over a distance of 1 km. The car’s short wheelbase was a disadvantage and made it difficult to control.

Most of the major mechanical innovations introduced with the T32 in 1923 were applied the following year to the famous Bugatti T35 which achieved over 2000 wins from 1924 to 1931. The anniversary edition of InterClassics & TopMobiel 2013 featured two Bugatti T35, a beautiful black T13 Brescia Sport from 1925, two T37 Sport, a T43 Grand Sport, two T44, a T51 and T54 Grand Prix, a 1932 T55, a Veyron and a T52 Baby. These original half-sized electrical powered Bugattis for children, called Baby, were produced in Molsheim between 1927 and 1936.

The historical Aston Martin line-up was impressive, with an original James Bond DB5 movie car as main attraction.

Interclassics & TopMobiel will be held January 17-19, 2014 again, celebrating Maserati’s 100th birthday, featuring Europe’s finest classic car dealers, automobilia, parts and art in an exclusive environment.

mecc13_00 mecc13_03 mecc13_04 mecc13_05mecc13_11mecc13_10Photos and text: Copyright © 2013 Henk Holsheimer