Dear CHB readers, this year’s Concorso d’Eleganza had a participant I wished I had seen in real, the Bugatti 57 SC Atalante. For me the ultimate dream car! Of course next to several gorgeous other automobiles. Sadly I didn’t make it this year to Villa d’Este, but luckily one of my great readers did, and he captured his experiences for you. Enjoy! – RAV
by Giacomo Crisafulli
Another big cars’ event has just finished. I’m talking about the famous Concorso d’Eleganza Villa D’Este. This famous event, launched in 1929, shows the best classic vehicles and prototypes from around the globe at one of the best locations in the world, Cernobbio, on the shores of Lake Como. On Sunday May 22 there was the public event and also the cars’ parade with the prize-giving.
As you can expect, in the early morning many people came to view al those jewels, which were now exhibited at Villa Erba’s huge park. The participating automobiles were parked on the grass in the park, creating a kind of route, dividing cars in categories. Except for BMW which is the main sponsor, which displays its participating and concept cars in a closed area.
I suggest you to imagine how beautiful it was watching all those cars in a beautiful mix of colors, highlighted by the sun, the grass, the trees and of course the cars themselves. All cars were amazing, but I want to focus your view on one of the most amazing cars of all time, the 1937 Bugatti 57 SC Atalante, brought by ‘her’ owner Mr. K.L. The pure black paint and the amazing racy silhouettes created pure astonishment to the visitors. This car is rare because out of the 17 coupés created, 14 are still in existence, and one of them is this particular one. These cars were built on the S chassis and this 57 SC came out of the factory in 1937 as an S version, and was returned three years later to have a supercharger fitted and to be upgraded to the SC specification (it has an inline 8 supercharged engine of 3257 cc).
A fun fact about this car’s owner came out during the parade. In fact, in this part of the event Mr. Simon Kidston, the host and a famous person in the collector’s world, always explains many interesting things about cars and funny anecdotes. When the 57 SC came on the red carpet, Mr. Kidston said to the public he had a conversation the day before with this Bugatti’s owner, and asked him: ”A car like this, can be driven often?” Mr. K.L answered: “Yes, for example, last week I’ve driven 60 kms with a friend to go and eat a pizza and to drink a coffee, in Greece, where I live.”Mr. Kidston, a bit curious said: “Oh, with a Bugatti, you just have a pizza and a coffee? I expected something more expensive and particular for a meal.” Mr. K.L. replied: “No, we have to think that Greece is having an economic depression period!” Needless to say that this created a big laugh among the spectators. And something really important happened minutes later, when this amazing Bugatti 57 SC Atalante won the Trofeo Vranken Pommery, the best iconic car. Another proof that this car is historic.
The ‘Best of Show’ is the ultimate award, but there were so many great winners for different kind of awards. The Best in Show by the Jury was a Maserati A6 GCS Berlinetta Pininfarina 1954 and the Coppa d’Oro Villa d’Este award went to the Lancia Astura II Serie Berlinetta Castagna 1933.