London Concours 2023 to Make Green Great Again with Dedicated Class
The London Concours, presented by Montres Breguet, is delighted to announce the latest class – ‘Make Green Great Again’ which will take centre stage at this years’ event, that kicks off on Tuesday. Inspired by the popular social media trend, ‘Make Green Great Again’, and curated by the creator of the original @makegreengreatagain page on Instagram, this class, presented by Bespoke Handling, will celebrate the very best examples of special cars that dare to be different, specified in a wide range of unusual verdant hues. There will be no red Ferraris or understated silver Aston Martins here – this is a class revelling in the automotive gems that are Making Green Great Again.
Among the rarities on display will be a wonderful Jaguar XK120 – among the last roadsters built in RHD. It was delivered, as a company car, to F Parham Ltd, in Gillingham, Kent in July 1953. The car was the personal transport of boss Leonard Francis Parham who, as a keen rally driver, also drove it competitively. After this, the XK passed through three subsequent owners, before being acquired in January 1968 by a young engineer, Douglas Potter. He achieved some success in the emerging XK Register racing series, but laid the car up for around 40 years. It has now undergone a full chassis-off restoration to FIA specification.
The class will also feature a stunning Aston Martin DBS, featuring what is believed to be a unique specification of a Pentland Green exterior over a Parliament Green interior – so very much at home in our line-up. The DBS superseded the much-loved Vanquish as the Aston Martin flagship in 2008, taking the famed, naturally aspirated 5.9-litre V12 to 510bhp and 420lb ft, with inspiration from the thunderous DBR9 and DBRS9 GT racing cars of the time. The competition machines also informed the DBS’s dramatic styling, and the use of carbonfibre on the bonnet, boot, front wings and door-opening surrounds. The result is a car that can hit 62mph in 4.3 seconds and 192mph.
The Honourable Artillery Company will also play host to an exceptional Porsche Carrera GT with a body by Zagato. Originally supplied to the German market, in 2019 this example was sent by the current owner to famed coach builders Zagato in Italy – where it was converted into a GTZ with the fitment of new panels and bespoke trim. Zagato projects are typically produced with OEM blessing; the conversion is respectful to homologation requirements, and as such the car remains mechanically standard. However, the conversion does result in a slight weight saving. Finally, the unique paint colour was mixed to complement the green interior leather.
The display will include an example of the ultimate road-going expression of the Ferrari 488, the Pista – finished in Verde Francesca, an entirely new Ferrari colour named by the owner of this very car. The Pista took aesthetic inspiration from the 488GTE and 488 Challenge racing cars. The biggest change came at the front end, which channels air through ducts in the bumper before directing it through a large vent in the bonnet. This helps to create more downforce over the nose at very high speeds. Such measures, as well as the use of underbody and rear diffusers, means the Pista creates 20 percent more downforce than the 488GTB. Meanwhile, the 3.9-litre twin-turbo V8 powerplant pushes out 710bhp at a screaming 8000rpm, in a car 91kg lighter than the GTB.
We’ll also welcome one of the most beautiful cars of the past 20 years to the HAC – the irresistible Alfa 8C. Alfa’s 8C arrived like a bolt of lightning – the 2003 concept so beautiful that it enraptured the world and its maker was pretty much forced to build it. Designed under the direction of Wolfgang Egger and constructed by Maserati, the 8C uses a 4.7-litre crossplane V8 similar to that of the GranTurismo, pumping out a heady 444bhp. Although it shares similarities with the Maseratis of the era, the 8C is shorter and lighter, making extensive use of carbonfibre. It has a transaxle, and places the engine far back under the bonnet to keep the mass centralised – the result is perfect 50/50 weight distribution. This example is particularly beguiling in its special green paintwork.
The line-up of green machinery will also include a very special Jaguar XJC, owned by the founder of EVO magazine and star of the YouTube sensation Harry’s Garage, Harry Metcalfe. Harry bought the Jaguar in 2014, and set about improving the performance and handling by fitting lower, stiffer springs, new dampers and bushes, and a shorter diff to enhance acceleration through the gears. The car was thoroughly enjoyed before a two- year restoration was started in 2020. Its paint is bespoke to the car; it started out as Aston Martin Minotaur Green, but Harry chose not to have the bronze ‘flip’ element included, so he asked a technician at Novol (which provided the paint) to do a mix without the flip. It’s now resplendent, a wonderful examples of this elegant, sporting British coupe.