2022 ACT German car show

Yesterday was the 2022 ACT German car show.   It was the first since 2019, with the 2020 and 2021 events unfortunately cancelled due to COVID.     The ACT show always punches above its weight in that it attracts not only the large base of cars from the Canberra region, but normally has cars drive in from southern NSW, northern Victoria and often a few from Melbourne too.

As with the 2019 event, I chose to drive down on Saturday so I could show a car and attend the dinner.   This year I chose to bring my 560SEL on the trip.   The running issues on my 250SE are not quite fully sorted out for a long drive, and given the weather all year, I expected decent rain.   I also didn’t have undercover parking this year.

I entered my 560SEL in the silver division, which is basically for road going cars.   Its a great idea and one that I wish the club in NSW would adopt.   It really opens up the event for everyone vs people who have nut and bolt restorations or spend weeks with white gloves on finding that last spec of dust.

They have quite a good system where if you win silver class, you must compete in gold next time (full concours).  And if you win gold you must compete in champions class.   Next time I bring my 250SE, I’ll be in gold, as I won silver in 2019.   Assuming I don’t win in Gold that year I can compete in Silver the year after.    That promotion/relegation system means that everyone gets an opportunity.  Its a great system.     And a huge contrast with NSW that collapsed the categories putting it out of reach except for the super wealthy.

The highlight of the show was the 1938 230 Cabriolet B, owned by John and Sandra Green.    It’s an amazing restoration when you look at the before and after pictures.   pre-war Mercedes-Benz models are very rare in Australia and it was great to see one of this quality on display.

2022 ACT German car showThe ACT event always does well with the roundies too, there was a great display of them parked nearby the 230 Cabriolet.   I also noticed how many nice W114/115 saloons there were on display at the show.   That model seems far better represented in the ACT than in NSW.  I also admired a W109 six cylinder in very nice condition.  I love all the small luxury touches on the W109 you only spot if you look closely.     On the other side there are generally more SLs at the NSW event.  Maybe it’s the weather.

Overall there were about 80 Mercedes-Benz on display with a good selection of the various models.   Probably the only real exception were the ‘presidential’ class of cars such as the 300 Adenauer and the 600.   For various reasons, we only had about 4-5 cars on display from NSW this year.   In other years we have had up to 20, so hopefully next time we will be able to bring a big contingent.

The BMW display was very large this year.   You can see the different focuses of the clubs – the BMW club is far more focused on the new M models vs the classics that were in quite small numbers.   The same went for the Porsche and Audi displays.   The VW display on the other hand is a bit more diverse, with the Beetle and the Kombi favorites.

The 2022 ACT German car show was held at Queanbeyan park.   I thought it was a good location – better than the greyhound track used last year.   There was plenty of room for more cars if they choose this venue again next year.

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