Posts Tagged ‘Amelia Island Concours’

Amelia Island to be Graced by Pope Mobile

Thursday, March 3rd, 2011

pullman-600-mercedes-benzLook at all the screaming, crying seniors and young children waving the papal flag as the Popemobile passes! They are jumping up and down like mad as the Pope waves and rolls down the crowded streets of Amelia Island, Florida! Well, not quite, but as the 125 year anniversary celebration of the invention of the automobile continues for Mercedes-Benz the 1965 Mercedes-Benz 600 Pullman landaulet built specially for Pope Paul VI will roll into the Annual Amelia Island Concours d’Elegance on March 11-13, 2011.

And though the religious faithful may have long gone from the flank of this particular Mercedes, the MB faithful will be out in force to view this car. The historic vehicle is making its first appearance on U.S. soil at Amelia Island and is part of a featured Class of Mercedes-Benz 600 vehicles on display during the automotive event, which features nearly 250 rare vehicles.

The Benz 600 Pullman landaulet was originally presented in September 1963 at the International Motor Show in Frankfurt, Germany, and quickly became the vehicle to have among Europe’s wealthy elite. Weighing in at nearly 5,000 pounds, the 600 featured a number of technological advances for the day and was equipped with Mercedes-Benz’s first ever V-8 that could reach 0-100 km/h (kilometers per hour) in an impressive 10 seconds – similar performance to many of the sports cars of the period.

mercedes-pope-mobileSpecially customized for the Pope, this Benz was constructed with an individual seat for the pontiff that could be raised and lowered during the car’s procession through crowded streets. An elevated roof, extended rear doors, and raised floor were fitted along with other special equipment such as bulletproof glass. Over two decades, the car was used by three popes and was returned to Mercedes-Benz’s Stuttgart, Germany headquarters in 1985. It comes to Amelia courtesy of the Mercedes-Benz Museum in Stuttgart, Germany, where it is one of many famous and priceless cars in its collection.

The 600’s basic equipment package was far above anything offered at the time and included air suspension, power brakes, central locking systems and an electronic heating and air conditioning system. With the numerous body designs and interior features to choose from, no two 600s were alike which ensured exclusivity for the owner. This was especially true for the owners of Pullman limousines and landaulets. The last 600 rolled off the assembly line in summer 1981 and during its 17-year production run, 2,677 were built of which 428 were Pullman limousines and 59 were landaulets.

“We are deeply indebted to the people at Mercedes-Benz for agreeing to send us the Pope’s personal 600,” says Bill Warner, Concours founder and co-chairman. “It has never been seen here in the United States and it makes a statement worthy of the Pope’s status around the world. It is an incredible vehicle and a true showcase for Mercedes-Benz workmanship and advanced technological thinking.”

The Amelia Island Councours is one of the premier Concours on the East Coast. We love the fact that since 1996, the show’s Foundation has donated nearly $1.7 million to Community Hospice of Northeast Florida, Inc. and other deserving charities. The 2011 Amelia Island Concours d’Elegance will be held March 11-13 on the at The Golf Club of Amelia Island at Summer Beach.

Amelia Island Concours 2011 Honoree: Bobby Rahal

Tuesday, September 28th, 2010

bobby-rahal-amelia-island-concoursThe Amelia Island Concours d’Elegance announced that Indy Car great Bobby Rahal will be the honoree for the 16th Annual Amelia Island Concours d’Elegance scheduled for March 11-13, 2011, at The Golf Club of Amelia Island at Summer Beach. Rahal has impacted the sport like few other drivers and continues today as a team principal in Rahal Letterman Racing.

“One of the great pleasures about Amelia is that we can honor the best of the best and Bobby Rahal certainly falls into the category,” says Bill Warner, Concours founder and co-chairman. “In nearly 20 years of racing, his record speaks for itself and he is still going strong today managing a successful racing team along with his son’s budding racing career. We are honored and excited to have him with us on Amelia Island.”

Racer, Team Owner, CART Executive, Businessman & Mentor

Robert “Bobby” Woodward Rahal was born in Medina, Ohio, in 1953, and worked his way up through the racing ranks starting with the SCCA’s feeder series to Formula Atlantic and then onto European Formula Two. In an 18-year career spanning F1, Can-Am, Le Mans/IMSA, and CART, Rahal notched three CART championships, including a win at the 1986 Indy 500, along with wins at the 1981 24 Hours of Daytona and the 1987 12 Hours of Sebring endurance races.


Kemp Museum to Show Mercedes at Amelia Island

Friday, March 12th, 2010

mercedes-benz-540-k-cabriolet-aThe Kemp Auto Museum of Chesterfield, MO has been invited back for their third consecutive Amelia Island Concours d’Elegance, which is taking place this weekend, March 12-14 at The Ritz-Carlton Amelia Island and The Golf Club of Amelia Island at Summer Beach.

Executive Director Rodger Van Ness will be showing the Kemp Auto Museum’s rare, award-winning 1939 Mercedes-Benz 540 K Cabriolet A at this year’s prestigious Amelia Island Concours. Van Ness commented, “Being invited back to the Amelia Island Concours for the third consecutive year is an honor, and to have the opportunity to show our 1939 Mercedes-Benz 540 K Cabriolet A again is a real treat.” He remarked, “Receiving invitations for two consecutive years is a tribute to and recognition of the one-of-a-kind collection The Kemp Foundation has obtained and the Museum maintains.”

About The Kemp Foundation and the Kemp Auto Museum:
The intent of the Fred M. Kemp Foundation is to demonstrate the evolution of European 20th century automotive design and engineering and its impact on the worldwide automotive industry. The Foundation is dedicated to the education, preservation, maintenance, expansion and the public display of the vintage antique, classic and contemporary European automobiles previously owned by Fred M. Kemp. Functioning as an educational facility through the Museum, the Fred M. Kemp Foundation is a non-profit charitable organization approved by the U.S. Internal Revenue Service as tax exempt under Section 501c3.

The Kemp Auto Museum collection is built from one of the finest and extensive private collections of classic Mercedes automobiles in the world, and includes the acclaimed coupe, cabriolet, sports car and sedan designs from 1886 up to the present.