The Earls Court Motor Show at this year’s Revival features some amazing sights, as you’d expect. Ferraris take centre stage, whilst around the outside are exhibits from Aston Martin, BMW, Maserati and one other manufacturer whose exhibit was arguably drawing more attention than the exotic red cars and that was a gold Vauxhall Viva HA.
The car is part of Vauxhall’s movie theatre exhibit where show goers can have their photograph taken on the red carpet and with their name in lights above the ticket booth! ‘We wanted to create some excitement and capture that Sixties vibe’ says Vauxhall’s Simon Hucknall. ‘The idea we came up with was the cinema with the Gold Viva theme, but we didn’t know how popular it would be!’ Sure enough, when GRR dropped by to see the Earls Court exhibition there were more people gazing at the Viva than there were the nearby LaFerrari.
Elsewhere another Vauxhall was raising eyebrows. A VIP taxi service exists to run people around the Revival and the cars used are typically period Rolls-Royces and Bentleys, but when Lord March came to choose which car should transport him to the Saturday evening Goodwood Ball, he chose a 1926 Vauxhall 30/98 with Velox bodywork. Said to be the most original 30/98 in existence, at the area near the Old Control Tower where the VIP taxis were gathering Revival visitors young-and-old were rather enamoured with the big Vauxhall.
Back in the day the more modestly-bodied 30/98s were fine hillclimb cars and indeed Gregor Fisken is racing a Vauxhall 30/98 Brooklands Special in the Brooklands Trophy race. When new, some 30/98s were taken straight to Brooklands once built and it was there that they earned the moniker of England’s first 100 mile per hour car.
So, there is one manufacturer whose cars are turning heads on track, as a static exhibit and as a rolling exhibit at the 2015 Revival. Come to think of it, that’d make a great trivia question …
Photography by Tom Shaxson