Europe’s biggest vintage car and motorcycle show, held in Padua, has now reached its 35th edition. This internationally renowned fair was initially intended for collectors and, after several years, it was opened to enthusiasts, curious people and professionals. Open from Friday 26 to Sunday 28 October, the Salone Auto e Moto d’Epoca is an exhibition covering 90,000 square metres, hosting 1,600 exhibitors and more than 5,000 cars to be discovered. The 11 halls of the exhibition centre were packed with car manufacturers, dealers, car repairers, scale models, accessories and much more, attracting an astounding number of visitors. With three main themes: vintage spare parts, car manufacturers and the so-called Future Hub.
Founded in 1983 as a market for historic cars, it is no coincidence that the halls of the exhibition centre are now entirely dedicated to cars: it is a true haven for visitors that are passionate about cars – in particular their history and culture – who will be immersed in a space where no detail, not even the smallest, is left to chance. By browsing through the spare parts stands, we first come across classic cars that bear witness to the evolution of the car industry from its beginning to the early 1970s. We then move on to dream cars, belonging to or evoking cultural and entertainment personalities, including the so-called Instant Classic section, which consists of recently built cars with a number of rare features, which are already to be considered classic models for the near future.
Not only vehicles but also spare parts, accessories and scale models: a fascinating journey through 20th century registration certificates, old number plates, signs, bolts and much more, which also attract the attention of non-experts who enjoy purchasing unique and special items.
And what about motorcycles? Of course, motorcycles are also featured at the exhibition dedicated to vintage vehicles: old two-wheeled vehicles, which have been repaired or are in need of repair, are either on display or available for purchase.
In addition to the exhibits, the most striking aspect of the exhibition area dedicated to vintage cars and motorcycles is that, once inside, you can sense great enthusiasm and passion: an intense atmosphere, especially in the area of the Clubs, where the energy of enthusiasts exchanging opinions and organising gatherings is truly captivating. If you think you will only find men at the Salone di Auto d’Epoca, you will certainly change your mind shortly after entering: as well as true enthusiasts (the world of motoring is now very popular with ladies), you will see that there are plenty of stands selling vintage items and quality handicrafts, which will attract the attention of those who are just being curious: sports accessories, trunk bags, bags, makeup mirrors, car air fresheners and jackets to match car upholstery. These are just some of the eccentric items on offer in the accessory area of the show, which you will not be able to resist.
All ages, genres and eras are featured at the Padua car show: past, present and future! This is noticeable in the halls dedicated to car manufacturers, where visitors can admire and learn more about new models, technologies and design, and in the Future Hub areas. The latter is meant to give visitors the impression of being in a “small town” where projects, creations and ideas are brought to life and prepared to be launched into the future. A few examples are the new Smart Fortwo Electric drive cabrio, the only electric cabriolet on the market, or the futuristic e-Golf, where you can find out more about cutting-edge driver assistance systems. At the Padua show dedicated to vintage cars, it is all about learning, discovering and having fun. Walking through the galleries and halls is an experience full of surprises: for example, interesting themed exhibitions, from vintage sports cars to a showroom entirely dedicated to historic cars and motorcycles belonging to the Italian Police Department (the Guzzi Falcone 500 motorcycle or the black 250 GT/E Ferrari, which were used by the Reparto Mobile della Questura di Roma in the 1960s, when the city of Rome was plagued by crime).
And if you are already tired of browsing, examining or snooping around, it is time for the most dynamic and exciting method of purchase: auction. Once again, the British auction house Bonhams has confirmed its participation in the 2018 edition and will be selling rare vintage car and motorcycle models. The Padua vintage car and motorcycle show is an event that continues to attract a record number of visitors. Its engine is still running, and will probably never stop running; in fact, it is already warming up for the 2019 edition, where novelties, surprises, interesting features and lots of exciting moments await you.