Classic Motoring

There was a chance to enjoy a range of vintage and classic motoring on display across 2018’s Show!

Celebrating 80 Years of the Volkswagen Beetle

2018 is the 80th anniversary of the Volkswagen Type 1, affectionately known the world over as the Beetle. We were delighted to have a collection of eight classic Beetles join us on Regent Street for this year’s Show in celebration of the historic milestone.

Production of the Beetle started back in 1938 when the need for a people’s car (Volkswagen in German) was formulated to provide a cheap, simple car to be mass-produced for Germany’s new road network. The result was the first Volkswagen, and one of the first rear-engined cars since the Brass Era (an American term for the early period of automotive manufacturing, named for the prominent brass fittings used during this time for such things as lights and radiators). With over 21 million produced, the Beetle is the longest-running and most-manufactured car of a single platform ever made – the secret of its success? Its friendly styling by the Austrian designer Erwin Komenda, and innovative engineering by Ferdinand Porsche surely helped ensure it became the best-selling car of all time. The much-loved marque even took centre stage in the hugely successful Disney films, Herbie the Love Bug, and the real Herbie joined us on the Street, along with some other beautiful examples.

Visitors made the most of this opportunity to enjoy a collection of Beetles in this 80th anniversary year because as recently as September, Volkswagen announced its decision to end production on this, one of the most iconic car designs on the planet, as soon as 2019.

Jaguar Drivers Club joined the party

2018 marks some major anniversaries for the Jaguar brand.  It was 70 years ago that the XK 120 sports car with Jaguar’s all new six-cylinder engine was launched.  With a fantastic turn of speed and significant success on the race track this car put Jaguar on the world map.

Also in 1948 the Mark V saloon was introduced, available with both 2.5 and 3.5 litre engines it was popular with business men and heads of state.  It even had a sporting pedigree with one with one car finishing third in the 1951 Monte Carlo Rally.

Only 50 years ago the revolutionary XJ saloon made its debut, at the time this well designed and engineered saloon was compared favourably with the much more expensive Rolls Royce.  Through many iterations the XJ name continues to grace Jaguar current large saloon to this day.

The Jaguar Drivers’ Club has been meeting the needs of Jaguar owners for more than 60 years.  Once again they were proud to be supporting the Regent Street Motor Show with some great examples of Jaguar’s anniversary cars.

Abels Moving Services

Abels Moving Services has a rich moving heritage and was awarded the Royal Warrant in 1989 – a proud honour which they have held to this day.

It proudly owns a 1896 horse-drawn removal pantechnicon (as used in days gone by for the movement of personal possessions), which they were honoured to showcase at the Regent Street Motor Show the day prior to the Bonhams London to Brighton Veteran Car Run which they were also proud to support through provision of luggage services. The removal trucks used for this are thankfully more modern and come equipped with state-of-the-art technology but removal vehicles through the ages were on display at the Show.


Harrods took part in the inaugural London to Brighton Veteran Car Run in 1898. Over the last few years, Harrods has developed a close partnership with the Run, which is believed to be the longest-running motoring event in the world. Harrods is an official sponsor of the event, and this year hosted the ever popular Saturday evening Participants’ Reception, supported by Hagerty. The annual event takes place on the eve of the Run and provides participants the perfect opportunity to meet and celebrate the start of the event.

This year, Harrods Director of Store Operations, James Healy, also took part in the historic Run, driving a 1901 electric Pope Waverley. The Pope Waverley is just one of the vintage vehicles which Harrods has preserved, as a nod to the rich history of the store.

Harrods was one of the first companies in the UK to develop an all-electric commercial fleet, introducing its first electric vehicle over 100 years ago and going on to build a fleet of over 60 electric vehicles – including solid-tyred American Walker electric vans – which delivered goods to the store’s local London customers.

Harrods maintains its commitment to innovating technology today. Over 100 years after the London department store first added an electric car to its fleet, Harrods returned to EV, with the addition of the 100 percent electric Nissan e-NV200 delivery van. The Nissan e-NV200 has been specially adapted to perfectly fit Harrods’ delivery needs. The load space of the van has been fully refridgerated and shelving units added to allow for fresh groceries to be transported in optimum condition. The exterior has also been wrapped in the traditional green and gold Harrods livery, making it recognisable as it travels around the city.