Pebble Beach Concours
Highlights of 2004 Concours: Preview
By Jeff Green
Aug 10, 2004, 23:26 PST

David Sydoric's 250 GT LWB Zagato Berlinetta will be on hand at the 54th Pebble Beach Concours d'Elegance - Sam Smith photo


PEBBLE BEACH, Calif. (July 28, 2004) -- Some of the most unique, historic and valuable automobiles from around the world, including vehicles from 30 states and 14 countries, are set to convene Sunday, Aug. 15 for the 54th Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance.


The annual affair along the 18th fairway of Pebble Beach Golf Links® this year honors the 100th anniversaries of Rolls-Royce and Hispano-Suiza and showcases more than 200 of the most extraordinary collector cars in the world. “And as a special treat for automobile enthusiasts,” says Concours Co-Chairman Sandra Kasky, “this year’s show will have the most significant display of classic Ferraris in history.”


Mercedes 540s on the lawn at Pebble Beach - Pebble Beach Company photo


The following is a small sampling of the 200-plus vehicles that will be on display at the 2004 Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance.


·      1912 Renault CB Coupé de Ville – Owned by Steve Arnold of Colorado Springs, Colo., this is the only remaining car of the two that were originally built.  The other went down with the Titanic on April 15, 1912.  (An exact replica was featured in the movie Titanic.)  The Coupé de Ville was one of the most prestigious, luxurious cars of its time. Renault, a competition-oriented company from its inception in 1898, was winning races as early as 1899. The company opened a coachworks for luxury cars in 1910.


·      1916 Crane-Simplex Model 5 Holbrook Skiff – Owned by Tonight Show host Jay Leno and formerly the property of the Harrah’s Automobile Collection, this one-of-a-kind Crane-Simplex-built beauty has been called “an example of imaginative craftsmanship and shattering originality,” by Automobile Quarterly magazine.  The car’s shipboard theme features many unique nautical touches, including portholes in the cowl, a propeller on the rear spare tire carrier and mahogany rub rails. A wooden tool chest sitting atop the driver’s side running board is accented by brass edges.  Early automobile historians suggest there may have been more than one of these Holbrook Skiffs built, but the car appearing at Pebble Beach is the only one known in the collector community.  The car was originally sold for $10,000 on the floor of the 1916 Palace Hotel Auto Show in San Francisco.  Crane-Simplex, however, was sold just after World War I and the Holbrook Skiff moniker disappeared from the American automobile landscape.



Tom Stegman's 65 250 LM Lusso Speciale will compete at the 54th Pebble Beach Concours d'Elegance - Sam Smith photo



·        1934 Hispano-Suiza J12 Fernandez et Darrin Coupé de Ville and

1934 Hispano-Suiza K6 Fernandez et Darrin Coupé Chauffeur – Owned by

Robert M. Lee of Reno, Nev., this matched set of Spanish-built classics was crafted

for Lord and Lady Rothschild.  On the J12, the Marc Birkigt-designed,

longitudinally-mounted V-12 displaces 9.424 liters and produces 200 horsepower.

Otherwise known as the model 68, the J12’s engine was based on the company’s

successful airplane engine from World War I. The exotic cars, built in France, were

the most expensive in the world. The chassis alone was approximately $10,150

delivered in Paris. The coachwork came from Fernandez et Darrin, one of the finest

coachbuilders in Europe.


·      1940 Lincoln Continental Town Car and 1940 Lincoln Continental Coupe – Now owned by motion picture producer Joel Silver (The Matrix, Lethal Weapon), these cars were originally owned by Frank Lloyd Wright.  The Continental, built from Lincoln’s Zephyr platform, was the first automobile to be honored for design excellence and placed on display by New York’s Museum of Modern Art. Wright called it the most beautiful car in the world.  The Lincoln Continentals were re-built by Wright, who added half-moon shaped opera windows, filled in the rear window on the town car and painted each car Cherokee red – his favorite color.  The cars reside at Silver’s plantation in South Carolina, which was built by Wright and restored by Wright’s son, Lloyd.


·      1907 Rolls-Royce Silver Ghost Barker Touring (AX201) – The original Silver Ghost, nicknamed because of its color and quiet ride, is now owned by Bentley Motors Limited, Cheshire, United Kingdom. This car won the gold medal at the 1907 Scottish Reliability Trials and then proceeded to run 14,371 miles without an involuntary stop – more than doubling the previous record before observers halted the test.  The Times of London said in its report, “No doubt she could have gone on for an indefinite period, but at 15,000 miles the patience of the Royal Automobile Club comes to an end, and observers are no longer supplied.”



1961 World Driving Champion Phil Hill, who will be a judge at the 54th Pebble Beach Concours d'Elegance, and former Ferrari importer Luigi Chinetti at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca - Sam Smith photo



·      1956 Mercedes-Benz 300SL Gullwing – Owned by automotive enthusiast Claude Picasso, son of artist Pablo Picasso., this historic 300SL has long been associated with their family.  Although the artist didn’t have a driver’s license himself, he was intrigued with the car and loved being photographed in it.  The legendary Gullwings were arguably the most desirable sports cars of the mid-1950s and remain so today.  Life magazine photographer David Douglas-Duncan, a friend of Picasso, owned the vehicle for many years.  It will be on display as part of the “Adventures of a Gullwing” exhibit created by Mercedes-Benz in honor of the bodystyle’s 50th anniversary. 


·      1914 Rolls-Royce Silver Ghost Barker Landaulette – Owned by Richard L. Scott of Sidney, Ohio, this rare classic was recently found and is believed to be the only un-restored Silver Ghost still in existence that was built before World War I.  The completely original car, including paint, engine, interior and leather top, has had only five owners, including British philanthropist Stanley Shaw Bond, who often drove the car on his Scottish estate to go shooting with his good friend, King George V.


·      1946 Delahaye 145 Chapron Coupé – Owned by Peter W. and Merle Mullin of Los Angeles, the long hood of this Henri Chapron design hosts a 5-liter V-12 engine that develops 175 horsepower and reaches a cruising speed of 110 mph.  Before the streamlined Chapron body was fitted in 1946, famed French racer Rene Dreyfus drove the car in the 1938 24 Hours of Le Mans and the Mille Miglia.



Preston Henn's 1965 Ferrari 275GTB/C Speciale Pininfarina Berlinetta will be displayed in the Ferrari competition class at the 54th Pebble Beach Concours d'Elegance - Sam Smith photo



·      1934 Rolls-Royce Phantom II Continental Park Ward Streamline Saloon – Owned by Ken McBride of Seattle, Wash., this Phantom II, which was discovered after spending 40 years in a barn, is equipped with an innovative 4-speed synchromesh transmission and a 6-cylinder engine making, in Rolls-Royce terms, “sufficient” horsepower.  The top speed with the saloon body was estimated at 92 mph. Many authorities on pre-World War II Rolls-Royce’s consider the Phantom II series to be the best the company ever built. Park Ward, which bodied this particular car, was known for producing the better formal designs fitted to these chassis.


Judging for the 2004 Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance will occur in 27 categories, with one vehicle receiving Best in Show honors.


First conducted in 1950, the Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance is an international gathering of automotive enthusiasts for “a celebration of the automobile” at The Lodge at Pebble Beach on the Monterey Peninsula. The Concours combines a scenic location – the famed 18th hole at Pebble Beach Golf Links® along the Pacific Ocean – with the opportunity to view rarely seen examples of automotive style, performance and history.

The 54th annual affair also includes a series of auxiliary activities, including the (Thursday, Aug. 12) Pebble Beach Tour d’Elegance around the Monterey Peninsula for Concours entries and the Sunday evening Pebble Beach Auction conducted by Gooding & Company that showcases classic, vintage and antique cars.


Proceeds from the Aug. 15, 2004 Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance support a number of local, national and international charities.  More than $7.5 million has been raised in previous years. Tickets for the Concours are $100 if purchased in advance at or by calling 877-693-0009 toll-free.  Tickets sold onsite are $125. Children under 12 are admitted free.

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