Whatever your automotive taste, the 24th annual Amelia Island Concours d’Elegance offered something delectable. Founder, chairman and impresario Bill Warner again outdid himself by assembling a multi-ring circus of delights that included unexpected classes such as “Cars of the Rock Stars,” “Heads of State,” and “VW Custom Coachwork.” Those who love racing found a similar embarrassment of riches from widely disparate disciplines like drag racing, endurance racing and Formula 1. Whether your preference is the purposeful elegance of the Ferrari 250 GT SWB or the clever innovation that has marked Indy cars through the decades, it was there to be sampled.
Of course, Amelia also holds up its bargain as one of the premier global concours by attracting a stellar field of more traditional elite cars from across the eras. The Best in Show winners — a 1938 Mercedes-Benz 540K Autobahn-Kurier owned by The Keller Collection at the Pyramids and a 1957 Ferrari 355 S owned by Cavallino Investments — demonstrated that.
Herewith our expansive photo coverage of the 2019 Amelia Island Concours d’Elegance.
The race cars of Jacky Ickx, the honored driver at this year’s Amelia Island Concours. They show the breadth of his racing career, from Formula 1 to Le Mans to the Paris Dakar Rally. Photo: Johnny Miles
Driver Jacky Ickx poses with Ford GT40 #1075, which won Le Mans twice, in 1968 and 1969. Ickx was responsible for the 1969 victory along with his co-driver, Jackie Oliver. Photo: Bryan McCarthy
This 1956 Cadillac Series 75 Presidential Limousine was built for President Eisenhower. Once the Secret Service switched to transporting the President in newer Lincolns, this Cadillac was used as a chase vehicle, often with Secret Service agents standing on the side rails. Photo: Bryan McCarthy
Rocker Janis Joplin had this 1964 Porsche 356C custom painted for her by friend and road manager Dave Richards. He named the psychedelic mural “The History of the Universe,” and it includes a portrait of Joplin and her band, Big Brother and the Holding Company. Joplin drove the car until her death in 1970. After a stint on display at the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, RM Sotheby’s auctioned the car in 2015 for $1.76 million. Photo: Bryan McCarthy
One of the few Packards bodied by a European coachbuilder, this 1938 Super Eight Coupe was ordered by a European shipping magnate and bodied by the Mayfair Carriage Company in London. Photo: Johnny Miles
Vatican City flags adorn this 1938 Cadillac V-16 Limousine Town Car owned by Nicola Bulgari. The car was once part of the Vatican’s motor pool and was used by Pope Pius XII. Photo: Bryan McCarthy
Porsche restorer Rod Emory of Emory Motorsports built this 356 A into one of his famous Outlaws, the 356 Emory Special Cabriolet, for singer John Oates, seen here with the car. Oates curated a display of “Rock-Star Cars and Guitars” for the Concours, which were displayed together on the show field. Photo: Bryan McCarthy
This Aston Martin DB4 GT Lightweight was “made by Experimental Department outside normal sanction,” according to factory records. It was raced in the period by Innes Ireland, Jim Clark, Tony Maggs and Roy Salvadori. Photo: Bryan McCarthy
The Cobra hood ornament on this 1927 Isotta Fraschini Tipo 8A S Roadster signifies an important aspect of the car’s history. It was installed by the coachbuilders at Fleetwood as a symbolic gesture for Rudolph Valentino, who commissioned the car and who had stared in the movie Cobra. Sadly, Valentino died unexpectedly at the age of 31 and was never able to take delivery of the car. Photo: Bryan McCarthy
Bruce Meyer, founding chairman of the Petersen Automotive Museum, poses with his 1961 Ferrari 250 GT SWB ‘SEFAC Hot Rod,’ a highlight of the Ferrari 250 GT SWB class at Amelia this year. Photo: Bryan McCarthy
One of the crown jewels of the National Automobile Museum (The Harrah Collection) in Reno, NV, is this 1936 Mercedes-Benz 500K Special Roadster. Photo: Johnny Miles
This 1958 Ferrari 250 GT PF Series 1 Cabriolet, the 14th of 40 built, actually gets driven regularly and has competed in eight Colorado Grands. Photo: Johnny Miles
Porsche Classic was showing off a newly restored Carrera GT on their stand at the show. During the restoration, Porsche Classic completely disassembled the car, spent 350 hours sanding and re-coating every carbon-fiber component including the tub, and then painted the car Oak Green Metallic, a classic Porsche color never originally offered on the car. Porsche Classic also made a few additional deviations from stock. Most notably, the shiny rim on the wheels is actually real silver. Photo: Johnny Miles
This two-door Beetle Cabriolet, bodied by German coachbuilder Hebmüller and Sohn, was part of the unprecedented VW Custom Coachwork class at this year’s Concours. Sold new in limited numbers through VW’s dealer network in Germany, roughly 100 are thought to survive. Photo: Bryan McCarthy