This year the Ferrari F40 celebrates it’s 25th birthday which, in some people’s eyes, now categorises the car as an official classic. Where better to celebrate than at the Italian Car Day at Brooklands Museum sponsored by Auto Italia which is just one year older than the car itself.
This year’s event was the biggest ever and Performance Direct’s Motor-Vision team were there to help the event go with a bang. To make sure that we were doing our bit, a range of motoring competitions were run so you could win free tickets to the show via Facebook, get a passenger ride in a Oakley Design modified Lamborghini Aventador around the Mercedes-Benz World circuit, and one lucky teenager won a ride up the famous hill at Brooklands in a Ferrari 458 Italia.
So what makes Auto Italia such a special event? Well, it was the first all-Italian car event to be held in the UK and it has gone from strength to strength year after year. Whether you’re a fan of classic Ferrari’s such as the F40 or the latest Lamborghini Aventador, Auto Italia’s annual event has something for everyone. From Fiat to Lancia, Alfa Romeo to De Tomaso, Ducati to Moto Guzzi, you just can’t go very far without seeing some Italian metalwork to grab your attention and stop you in your tracks.
For me I’m always fascinated to see such rarities as the De Tomaso Pantera which is one of the most fantastic lesser-known Italian supercars ever produced. Whenever I see one I can’t help but stop, stare, examine and then draw a great many comparisons between it and it’s Ferrari and Lamborghini counterparts. Extremely rare cars such as the Arbarth Simca were on hand for your viewing pleasure and the Triumph Italia 2000 was there to show that even British cars could be Italian too. While it’s hard to imagine a city road now without a modern Fiat 500 parked on it somewhere the first car to bear the 500 number and so the Fiat 500 Topolino (“Little Mouse” in Italian) was on show to remind us that all cars have a starting point.
One of the big show highlights was the first chance to see the newly modified Oakley Design Lamborghini Aventador LP760-2. With subtle but distinctive styling changes, less weight, more grip, and more power, Oakley Design have unleashed the potential of the car and turned it into a real monster. Consider that as standard it can do 217mph and 0 – 62mph in 2.9 seconds it’s hard to imagine that anyone would want a quicker one. Fortunately people like Jon Oakley from Oakley Design have no such sentiment and always question how fast it is possible to make something go. Shaving points off the 0 – 62mph time and adding to the top speed of the car fulfil what the car is capable of and make it all it can be.
While it seems a little over the top to modify such a car you just can’t argue with the results. Oakley Design take a car that already borders on perfection and they make it better, faster, and meaner. It is the sort of thing that causes progress to happen. One lucky show-goer won the Performance Direct competition and got to have a ride around the Mercedes-Benz World circuit in the car driven by a professional driver.
Other show highlights included the various trade stands, seeing the museum exhibits, and getting to enjoy the best and most interesting bits of the Italian Car Scene.