Events : Report 26th InterClassics Maastricht 2019

Marking an early start into the show season the 26th edition of the InterClassics in Maastricht was able to welome well over 30,000 visitors for the second year in a row. Over the four opening days most viewers will obviously attend on the weekend, but the late closing time on Friday at 21:00 proved a welcome addition for many.

Words and Photography: Alexander Boucke

Fleeing from the winterly drizzle outside into the carpeted and nicely heated halls of Maastricht’s exhibition centre always feels like entering a different world – quite a luxurious one. The show is all about exquisite cars and the usually stunning special exhibition. This year the history of the once glamorous Italian car-maker Lancia was shown in collaboration with Dutch and Belgian clubs and the Louwman collection lending the only surviving Lancia D23 Spyder Pininfarina.
Whilst Maastricht is not the right place to find restoration projects for small sums, a very good choice of interesting cars were available in the €10,000 – 25,000 range, with most 60s and 70s family cars or MG and Triumph sports cars falling into that category. Asking prices for these were stable, but many offerings on the higher ranges of the price scale were notably cheaper than in previous years – in particular the ‘normal’ Porsche 911 seems to have left the peak prices by some margin.
As in the recent years before, an interesting selection of brand new or as good as new unrestored classics have been on offer, including gems like a 380km Autobianchi A112 Lusso, a base model Alfa 75 with 2400km or a Renault 4 with 2200km on the clock. Prominent previous onwers are still a strong selling point, like €47,000 for Rowan Atkinson’s former Lanica Thema 8.32 from 1989 or Ava Gardner’s Facel Vega Excellence auctioned for €160,000.
Additional highlights of the show include a separate hall with the displays of local car clubs and a large auction from Coys held on two days. A novel feature were a pair of fully animated driving simulators where visitors could compete against each other on the historic Monte Carlo circuit.

1 Comment

  1. Good article, Alexander. Classics are a wonderful hobby, especially if you like doing a little work yourself to improve the condition. If you buy the right car at the right price, and at the right time, you can even make some money at it. In 1985 I bought here in Canada an AC Ace-Bristol with its D-2 motor upgraded to S specification, for the equivalent of around seven thousand quid. Over the years I did some work and put into it roughly thirty thousand pounds, and sold it for over four times that much in 2014. Yes, there had been inflation during those years, but it still was a decent investment. Given how much more AC Ace-Bristols have been going up since I sold mine, I regret the sale. The buyer thus got a good deal too.

    I bought an E Type OTS in mid 2017 and have been doing some tinkering with it as well. My extensive hours of labour have turned it now into a veritable close-to-new unrestored car. Most people find it hard to believe that the paint is original (with five per-cent invisible retouching), and has never had a speck of rust or as much as a parking lot ding. I have brought the mildly faded but tear-free original leather interior back to its supple and elegant erstwhile glory. The E Type is now worth a good 30 per-cent more than what I paid for it. I have only spent a bit of money on small things such as Lucas PL-700 tri-pod headlamps and a new old stock quarter tonneau. I recommend the hobby if you are passionate about particular cars. Just make sure you know what you are doing and not poking about in the dark.

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