September 4, 2023

Cougar Brakes

Classic car technician Steve has been looking at the corroded brake discs on our Ford Cougar. After removing the corroded discs, new pads and discs

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Engine Out

After classic car technician Tom catalogued the components of our Cobra Project, he got to work removing the engine from this classic car. Now that

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Classics At Glemham 2023

On Sunday 3rd September, Classics at Glemham at Glemham Hall. took place. The event was aimed at all the family and featured a car show with a huge range of classic cars, military vehicles, commercial vehicles, motorbikes and more.

At Classics at Glemham 2023, you could see:

  • a wide variety of classic and interesting vehicles
  • car club stands and exhibits
  • classic motorcycles, cafe racers and trikes
  • vintage buses and coaches
  • classic commercial vehicles
  • food and drink
  • live music 
  • children’s entertainment
  • auto jumble
  • arts and crafts and stalls
  • trade stands

Classics at Glemham began in 2019 and was something of an immediate success. Helping to raise funds for charities, this really is a car show worth attending. Unfortunately, the Bridge Classic Cars team were unable to attend the 2023 show but plans are in place to be at next year’s event. We hope to see you there!

Cougar Brakes

Classic car technician Steve has been looking at the corroded brake discs on our Ford Cougar. After removing the corroded discs, new pads and discs were fitted to both the front and rear of the car.

Ferrari – A Film About Enzo Ferrari

Towards the end of 2023, a very exciting film will be released – Ferrari.

This is the story of the legendary Enzo Ferrari.

Described by Neon as:

“Ferrari is set during the summer of 1957. Behind the spectacle and danger of 1950’s Formula 1, ex-racer, Enzo Ferrari, is in crisis. Bankruptcy stalks the company he and his wife, Laura, built from nothing ten years earlier. Their tempestuous marriage struggles with the mourning for their one son. Ferrari struggles with the acknowledgement of another. His drivers’ lust to win pushes them out to the edge. He wagers all in a roll of the dice on one race, the treacherous 1,000-mile race across Italy, the iconic Mille Miglia.”

Starring Adam Driver, Penélope Cruz, Patrick Dempsey, Jack O’Connell, Shailene Woodley

Directed by Michael Mann.

Another Inspection Begins

Classic car technician Jonn has been inspecting and assessing our new arrival, our 2020 AK 427. As this will eventually be won through Bridge Classic Cars Competitions, he wanted to make sure it was on its way to being ready for its future new owner.

While inspecting the eye-catching car, Jonn tested the battery and found it to be working as it should. Monty stepped in to help Jonn out by making a new lower radiator hose which Jonn then fitted and secured in place.

The inspection of our 2020 AK 427 will continue with any other issues being rectified before it is won very soon.

Inspecting Our Competition Jaguar

Our 2001 Jaguar XKR has been in the hands of classic car technician Jonn as he has begun inspecting the vehicle ready for it to eventually go live on Bridge Classic Cars Competitions very soon.

During his investigation, Jonn tested the air con which he found to be working fine. He also found that there was a broken wire inside the loom which meant the boot release button was not working as it should. After Jonn had repaired this, everything was back working again.

The bezels that go around the centre gauges were reattached before Jonn turned his attention to the front seats. The driver’s seat module was found loose under the seat so needed to be reattached to the seat frame.

This was slightly better than the passenger side module which was missing completely. Jonn also needed to untwist the nearside front seatbelt at the reel behind the panel.

Engine Out

After classic car technician Tom catalogued the components of our Cobra Project, he got to work removing the engine from this classic car.

Now that the engine is out, it will be refurbished before being returned to the car further along the restoration process.

As you can see from the photos below, it was quite a bit of work but, now that it’s done, things can progress for our Cobra project.

Concours of Elegance 2023

Over the weekend, one of the most prestigious car shows in the world took to the palace grounds of Hampton Court to celebrate the most unique, rare and beautiful pieces of machinery the world has ever seen – The Concours of Elegance 2023.

From the moment you stepped foot through the east gate into the palatial gardens, automotive history burst out from every corner and on the perfectly manicured lawns. Cars of such historic note that they have become myths, only to be viewed in the printed pages of books and magazines. But yet here they were, within arms reach. Their flawlessly polished and presented paintwork able to be fogged up by the heavy breathing of petrolheads who had taken this pilgrimage.

Everything from one of only a handful of Mk2 Ford GT40s (the road-going version of the racer, the Mk1) to a fleet of XK120s, 140s, 150s and E-Types flanked the medieval brick walls that ran the perimeters of the palace. But in front of them, over a century of automotive history lay bare for all to see, hear and experience.

Beautifully restored Lamborghini Miura’s, battle scarred all original Jaguar C-Types and Blower Bentley’s were rowmates with the original 1899 Piretti-Bugatti which even came with its original wooden crate next to its brothers, a Type 57 Atalante and a Type 59 unrestored racer. Only at the Concours of Elegance could these machines be brought together as all of the 90 cars on display had been personally invited to attend because of their importance in classic car history.

If it had just stopped there, this still would have been the greatest display that I had ever seen. But, nestled under the branches of a listing oak tree lay what can only be seen in the fever dreams of the most ardent of classic car fans.

These weren’t just some of the best classic cars I had ever seen, these were THE best. On a financial note, the first 5 cars in this row would have a combined value of over £80,000,000 and I was within inches of these achingly beautiful hand built objects d’art.

4 of them well and truly stuck out to me. These 4 to be specific.

1954 Jaguar D-Type Prototype recently restored by the craftspeople at DK Engineering to exactly as it would have left Browns Lane ahead of testing. A car driven by the greats such as Dewis, Hamilton and Hawthron. The only words that can describe it as are ”life changing” in that something with so much story, actually lives and breathes.

There was all manner of multi-million pound metal as far as the eye could see. Bugatti 57S Atlante’s, Ferrari 275’s, Countaches, Rolls Royces, Porsche’s you name it. But, one of the most rare beasts just stood there next to one of the most important sports cars in history but first, let’s talk about the White One.

A Ferrari 250 GTO is one of the most sought-after and highly prized pieces of the classic car world. In fact, I would go as far as to say they transcend being a machine and become object d’art. In total, just 36 of these cars were made for the 1962/1963 season to represent the Scuderia and its affiliated privateer teams. The tales of these cars passed into legend, whether it be through certain drivers or just because of their rarity. These cars will openly trade for over £30m+ so just to see one in the wild was beyond far out. Oh, and it was truly stunning.

Possibly one of the most beautiful cars to have been penned by Giotto Bizarrini paired with the elegant violence of the majestic Colombo 3-litre V12, it is completely understandable how something like this is mentioned in the same breathe as paintings by the masters.

As if just this car on its own wasn’t enough, it was flanked either side by cars that make grown men weak at the knees. But the car to the left of the 250GTO was particularly important to us for several reasons and part of the reason that we paid for the ticket and made the effort to go all the way south just to see when it was announced it was going to be there.

It is CSX2001.

CSX2001 is the first production Shelby Cobra to be built. Built in July of 1962, CSX2001 and delivered to one of the first customers located in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. The car was enjoyed for a little while before being brought back and chopped in against a brand new Porsche.

It was then purchased by ‘Lucky’ Casner – who basically founded the American arm of the Maserati factory race team. Because of that, CSX2001 was converted into full race duties for upcoming races. Once the conversion was complete it was ready to hit the track but one thing lead to another and CSX2001 was sold to French driver Jean Marie Vincent ahead of the 1964 24 hours of Le Mans but it would never compete that year. Between 1964 and 1965, the car would be raced throughout Europe by Jean Marie including the Tour de France, 1000kms de Paris and several others.

The car was then upgraded into 1964 specification for the Cobras. The gnarly 289ci V8 was dropped in the front along with that gorgeous set of Halibrands which required the aluminium flares to be sank into the body. Oh, and it has rack and pinion steering rack installed in it by AC Cars here in the UK.

In 1966 it was sold to another Frenchman and continued to be raced throughout Europe.

In 2006, it was bought by petrolhead extraordinaire Bruce Meyer who is the president of the Petersen Museum in LA and an eminent collector of significant road and race cars in his own right.

To celebrate the restoration of CSX2001 in its new black paintwork, Bruce rallied the car to Budapest as part of its shakedown.

In the same row as CSX2001 was another piece of myth, it wore the prancing horse on its nose and again I never thought I’d get the chance to ever see this car in the flesh.

This particular 1961 Ferrari 250 GT California Spider is not like the others. It was owned by French actor Alain Delon and was actually rediscovered in a French barn along with 60 other rare classics before being recommissioned and brought back to life.

The most famous of its siblings is of course the James Coburn car but Delon’s car still reached an impressive $18.5m when it went across the auction block after its reawakening in Paris around 10 years ago. It has always worn this number as well, in period photos (some of which included Delon and Jane Fonda arriving on set for the film ‘Les Fellins’ it still has the number 4452 on its plate.

A beautiful piece of not only Ferrari history but classic car history in general and by the looks of things, the pride and joy of its new owners collection and to be honest, a bit of privilege to get to take photos of.

Also to celebrate the 100 years of Le Mans, Concours of Elegance had put together a very special display of Le Mans winning cars. The special things being that these cars hadn’t just won the worlds toughest endurance race once, but back it up with a double win. Not the same model of car which is common place in modern endurance racing but the same chassis with back to back wins.

Cars like the 1929 and 1930 winning Bentley ‘Old Number One’, the 1952 Merecedes W194, 1968 and 1969 Le Mans Ford GT40 (in full Gulf livery), the 1963 and 1964 Le Mans winning Ferrari 275P as well as the 1974 Matra MS670B driven by the legendary pairing of Henri Pescarola and Gerard Larousse.

It was an absolute pleasure to be able to attend an event such as this in such a beautiful setting. It was also a true petrolheads honour to even be around these machines and soak up the atmosphere and history. Guaranteed, its already on my calendar for 2023.’

Nick attended this event with his side project, Caster & Camber. To see more of this project and more of his work check them out on Instagram and Facebook.

Check out the full gallery from the 2023 Concours of Elegance here:

Lambretta – The History Of An Icon

There are some vehicles that appear from time to time that become icons of their era. When you think about iconic scooters, one of the names that very quickly comes to mind is Lambretta. The now legendary Italian scooter has an interesting history that spans over seven decades.

The Birth Of Lambretta

The Lambretta story begins in post-World War II Milan, Italy. The man behind the scooter was Ferdinando Innocenti, who saw the need for a more affordable, efficient, and stylish scooter than the ones being produced at the time. Drawing inspiration from the scooters used by American troops during the war, Innocenti set out to design a vehicle that would cater to the European market.

In 1947, the Lambretta Model A was unveiled at the Paris Motor Show. With its sleek, aerodynamic design and user-friendly features, the Lambretta quickly gained popularity and would go on to become one of the most recognisable scooters out there.

Lambretta And Mod Culture

The 1950s and 1960s were very successful for Lambretta. The brand rapidly expanded its lineup to include various models, such as the LD, TV, and SX series, each offering unique features and catering to different consumer needs. Lambretta became more than just a mode of transportation; it was a symbol of youth culture, freedom, and rebellion.

During this period, Lambretta scooters became closely associated with the Mod subculture in Britain. Mods, characterised by their stylish attire and love for modern jazz and R&B music, adopted the Lambretta as their preferred mode of transport. The scooter’s design, with its clean lines and polished chrome, perfectly complemented the Mod look.

The Mods didn’t stop at just riding Lambrettas though; they made the scooter a key element of their fashion identity. Stylishly dressed in tailored suits and parkas, Mods used their Lambrettas as fashion accessories as much as they used them for transportation. The scooter was an extension of their sharp, well-groomed image, and it became an iconic symbol of Mod culture.

Challenges and Decline

Despite its initial success, Lambretta faced stiff competition from Vespa, another Italian scooter manufacturer. The two brands engaged in a fierce rivalry, each trying to outdo the other with innovative designs and features. However, by the late 1960s, Lambretta began to face financial difficulties, and production began to gradually decline.

The oil crisis of the 1970s caused further problems for Lambretta, as fuel-efficient small cars gained popularity, leading to a lower demand for scooters. In 1972, Lambretta ceased production altogether.

Lambretta Is Still Alive

Although Lambretta disappeared from the production line, its legacy never truly faded. Enthusiasts and collectors around the world continued to cherish and restore vintage Lambretta scooters, keeping the brand’s spirit alive.

More recently, Lambretta made a comeback with a renewed focus on electric scooters. Even though these new electric models maintain some of the style and feel of their predecessors, it’s still hard to beat the feeling of riding one of the original models.

From its beginnings in post-war Italy to its modern-day revival, Lambretta has consistently captured the imagination of riders around the world. It’s more than just a scooter; it’s a symbol of freedom, style, and the open road. Whether you’re a classic scooter enthusiast, a fashion follower, or a modern commuter, the Lambretta legacy lives on, reminding us of the unique combination of fashion and transportation that defines its remarkable history.

Win Our Lambretta

If you want to relive Mod culture, then our 1977 Lambretta Jet 150 will be drawn live tomorrow (Tuesday, 5th September). There are still tickets available so you have a chance of winning your very own Lmabretta for just a few pounds.

Full details here.

Bridge Classic Cars

If you would like to see the full range of classic vehicles we are restoring, all of our current projects can be seen here.

Keep up to date with automotive news here.

East Anglian Copdock Bike Show

Yesterday, 3rd September, the East Anglian Copdock Bike Show was held at Trinity Park in Ipswich.

The show’s history dates back to 1992 when a small group of classic motorcyclists wanted to explore the idea of displaying their personal collections of bikes. The idea was to allow people of all ages to get up close and personal with the machines they were so passionate about.

Since that first idea, the East Anglian Copdock Bike Show has grown into one of the most popular motorcycle shows in the area. It is a family-friendly event and has something for everyone whether you have an interest in motorbikes or not.

The show is all about raising money for local charities and, so far, more than half a million pounds has been raised.

This year’s show looked to be a great success and we hope to be able to make it there ourselves next year.

In the meantime, the Bridge Classic Cars Bike Meet is making its debut this month so, if you want a fix of motorbikes while waiting for the Copdock Show to return in 2024, all the information you need is here.