GALLERY: Our Favorite Supercars, Beach Buggies, And Rally Boxes From The Quail, A Motorsports Gathering
Photography by Naveed Yousufzai
Whether the point of attendance is to look at special cars or to be seen looking at special cars, The Quail, A Motorsports Gathering has only grown in stature among those who arrive in Monterey for Car Week each August, and although it’s history is a bit of a blip compared to that of the main event at Pebble Beach, the Quail staked its claim years ago as one of the highlights of Monterey Car Week—and it continues to deliver the supporting evidence as to why that is.
The apparent “Motorsports” element of the gathering is getting harder and harder to see among the road-going cars and the growing glut of new-car launches, but the mix of machinery is a welcome one all the same, and is as eclectic as it gets without sacrificing quality or veering into humor territory. It’s like a car enthusiast’s die-cast collection rendered in real life. The distended and heavily vented bodywork of war-era French designs from the likes of Delage and Bugatti share the lawn with the analog supercars paradigm-shifters of the 1980s, while another swivel of the head will reveal a clowder of Meyers Manx buggies arranged in one of the golf course’s sand traps. And if you’re less than impressed by the new Aventad-… sorry, “Countach,” there was a solid delegation representing the original Gandini versions to appreciate instead.
Highlights also included Parnelli Jones’ Baja 1000-winning Ford Bronco wearing a wing for a roof, the one-off Cosworth-powered Monteverdi hai 650 F1 supercar, a first-series Renault 5 Turbo—and to think that some Porsche people believe that pasha seats are the end-all be-all of interior funkiness—and a gorgeous Ford GT40 Roadster wearing a set of perfect knock-off wires.
After an all but canceled Car Week last year, the atmosphere here was a little more carbonated (champagne always helps) than usual, and while there have been equally if not more impressive turnouts at events like The Quail, one could still sense some extra ebullience in the crowds, or at least a feeling that things are not to be taken for granted anymore. Car Week is a detour from reality driven by the presence of everyone’s favorite machines in one place, and while the concours that anchors it all together is the de facto place to show off otherworldly vehicles from the world’s greatest collections, the Quail provides a more fleshed out cross section of what enthusiasts are into, while keeping the quality as high as possible. We didn’t capture each and every car on display this year, but we hope our gallery gives a sense of what it was like to be back.