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IN RESPONSE TO THE OUTBREAK OF COVID-19, MANY EVENTS HAVE BEEN CANCELLED OR POSTPONED. PLEASE CHECK WITH ORGANISERS BEFORE TRAVELLING TO ANY EVENT.
We seem to say it every year, but every year it’s true: it’s going to be another terrific 12 months for classic car enthusiasts.
We really are spoilt for choice when it comes to exciting classic car events, be they charming local get-togethers, national celebrations or world-class historic race meetings.
Picking the classic car events of 2020 we’re most excited about hasn’t been easy, but we eventually settled on this list. And if you don’t see the one you’re looking for here, you can always check out our full classic car events calendar.
So get out there and enjoy yourself! Just don’t forget to take your car along, too…
Goodwood Members’ Meeting 2020
When: 28-29 March 2020
Where: Goodwood Estate, West Sussex, UK
If the Goodwood Revival is all about the atmosphere and the Festival of Speed is about modern machines, then the Members’ Meeting is where historic racing really takes centre-stage.
The 15 grids in 2020 will cover everything from pre-war Edwardian Specials to ’70s and ’80s saloon cars, while one of the three demos stars F1 racers from 1970-’75.
Cross your fingers that the weather holds up, though – the 2020 event has moved forward a week from 2019, and it’s only two years ago that snow rather hampered proceedings!
Tickets are for GRRC members only and those who are members of the Fellowship, but on the plus side you can join the Fellowship here for a yearly fee of £39; it offers plenty of other benefits, besides.
Drive It Day
When: 26 April 2020
Where: Various locations across the UK
Americans have Thanksgiving, tennis fans live for Wimbledon, and classic car enthusiasts… well, we have Drive It Day, the annual show of force for the UK movement.
As the name suggests, the idea is simply that you take your classic out for a spin, but if you prefer something more organised, there are dozens of UK-wide events timed to coincide with it. The Federation of Historic Vehicle Clubs lists them all on its website, including a Sunday Scramble at Bicester Heritage. Either way, just make sure you get out there and mark it.
Donington Historic Festival 2020
When: 1-3 May 2020
Where: Donington Park, Leicestershire, UK
The Donington Historic Festival celebrates its 10th anniversary in 2020, so we’re expecting something special at the circuit.
We don’t yet have a full timetable or any other details, but we do know it will run from from 1-3 May and will offer nine decades of racing.
We also know from past experience that it’ll be great fun, with close competition and open paddocks plus plenty to enjoy on and off track. And if you’re stuck for a present for someone, early-bird tickets are available now.
Grand Prix de Monaco Historique 2020
When: 8-10 May 2020
Where: Monte-Carlo, Monaco
With the Grand Prix de Monaco Historique only taking place every other year, it always feels like a long wait for this classic motorsport spectacular – but it’s always worth it. After all, where better to take in historic racing than around the evocative, iconic streets of Monte-Carlo?
For the 12th edition there will be seven races from seven eras, each named after a driver key to that time – for example, the pre-war Grand Prix cars and voiturettes contest is named after Louis Chiron, while the race for 1973-’76 Formula One cars is named after Niki Lauda.
The Summer Jaguar Festival 2020
When: 15-17 May 2020
Where: Newby Hall, Ripon, North Yorkshire, UK
The Jaguar Enthusiasts’ Club’s Jaguar Festival moves north for 2020, taking over the stately Newby Hall in the Yorkshire Dales for three days of Big Cat-related fun.
Information is relatively scarce at present, but the club says it’ll have “plenty of surprises, celebrations and special displays” plus an all-new ‘moving motor show’ display.
Beaulieu Spring Autojumble 2020
When: 16-17 May 2020
Where: National Motor Museum, Beaulieu, Hampshire, UK
For a relaxed springtime classic car event, hopefully blessed with sunshine, that might also take you one step closer to getting your latest project back on the road, look no further than Beaulieu’s Spring Autojumble.
With more than 1000 stands it is one of the largest events of its kind – and for Land Rover enthusiasts, Sunday’s Land Rover Rummage is an added bonus!
Plus, new for 2020, is the Retro Village, an indoor trading area for non-automotive vintage and retro items, collectables and accessories.
Concorso d’Eleganza Villa D’Este 2020
When: 22-24 May 2020
Where: Villa Erba, Cernobbio, Italy
As backdrops to classic events go, you won’t get much better than the breathtaking shores of Italy’s Lake Como. Now 91 years old, this prestigious concours at Villa d’Este celebrates two- and four-wheeled classics.
Three classes have already been announced: ’Hypercars of the 1990s’, ‘Pre-war Roadsters’ and ‘Cops and Robbers: Fast cars from both sides of the Law’, so you can certainly expect plenty of variety.
(credit: Classic Racing)
When: 22-24 May 2020
Where: Circuit de Spa-Francorchamps, Belgium
Historic motorsport at what many consider to be the greatest of all circuits. What’s not to like?
The grids are always fantastic at this historic-racing fest, now in its tenth year. There are seven series, from ‘The Greatest’s Trophy’ (for ’50s and ’60s endurance cars) through Group C prototypes and up to the Endurance Racing Legends grid (for sports car and GT icons of the ’90s). Club enclosures and exhibits add to the event’s ambience.
London Concours 2020
When: 10-11 June 2020
Where: London, UK
This mid-week extravaganza at the Honourable Artillery Company, tucked away in the heart of the British capital, is a compact yet high-class automotive garden party that each year welcomes 80 classic and modern supercars to its manicured lawns.
Brooklands Festival of Motorsport 2020
When: 13-14 June 2020
Where: Brooklands, Surrey, UK
The essence of Brooklands condensed into one weekend, the Festival of Motorsport features every type of motorsport associated with the historic venue and takes place on the anniversary of its first race in 1907.
Entrants can win an award by competing in two of the three main events – a speed trial, a driving test and a concours – and there’s also a separate hillclimb competition plus stalls, attractions and entertainment.
Classic Nostalgia 2020
When: 20-21 June 2020
Where: Shelsley Walsh Hill Climb, Worcestershire, UK
Few events are blessed with a location as picture-perfect as Classic Nostalgia. And what’s more, Shelsley Walsh Hill Climb in Worcestershire is absolutely steeped in motoring history, as this charming yet often awe-inspiring event will soon remind you.
Nor is it simply a static car show with demo runs: the drivers are going up the hill against the clock, and they really will be going flat-out. With a concours d’elegance, live music, entertainment, food and a special feature on 1960s cars – including Lotus as the key marque – there’ll be plenty to keep you busy over the weekend.
Bicester Heritage’s Sunday Scrambles
When: 21 June / 4 October 2020
Where: Bicester Heritage, Oxfordshire, UK
If you’ve not yet experienced a Sunday Scramble at Bicester Heritage, make it your New Year’s resolution to do so in 2020. You’ve already missed the first one, which took place on 5 January, but there are still two more to go…
In just five years, these informal events have gone from coffee ’n’ cars affairs to essential gatherings of thousands of enthusiasts and varied vehicles.
Anything goes – you’re just as likely to come across a Lamborghini 400GT as you are a Peugeot 505 – and many of the Technical Site residents open up for more delights.
Anyone is welcome to attend, whether in a classic car or not, and tickets are cheap: from just £5.50 if you buy early enough, up to £11 right up to the day before – but note that tickets are limited and you can’t buy on the gate.
National Metro & Mini Show 2020
When: 21 June 2020
Where: British Motor Museum, Gaydon, Warwickshire, UK
The Metro & Mini Show is always great fun – as pretty much anything concerning Alec Issigonis’ diminutive marvel is – so why not head along in 2020 and spend a day with hundreds of British classics.
Of course, this is just one of many events throughout 2020 at the British Motor Museum – click here for the complete list.
Techno-Classica Essen 2020
When: 24-28 June 2020
Where: Essen, Germany
You could be forgiven for thinking, ‘not another indoor car show’ and, yes, that’s exactly what this is – but a trip to Techno-Classica in the German city of Essen is never wasted.
As well as the manufacturer and club stands you might expect – and plenty that you might not expect, given that it’s a delightfully different range than what you’d see at a British show – the vast marketplace area is a treasure trove.
Whether you leave the show having actually bought your next classic or not, simply wandering around and looking at all the rarities on offer makes for a fascinating time.
Heveningham Concours 2020
When: 27-28 June 2020
Where: Heveningham Hall, Suffolk, UK
Returning for the fifth time to this beautiful, Grade I-listed location, the Heveningham Concours is a picture-perfect petrolheads’ delight.
A celebration of both cars and aeroplanes, around 50 of the former and 12 of the latter will take part in two separate concours competitions.
But it’s not all static exhibits – there’s also Horsepower Hill, a timed drag race up the estate’s drive. This year will be the third time this feature, complete with its own paddock and doughnut ring, has thrilled spectators.
Plus there’s the Heveningham Tour, preceding the main event on 26 June, which takes participants on a scenic drive around Suffolk.
Le Mans Classic 2020
When: 2-5 July 2020
Where: Circuit de la Sarthe, Le Mans, France
The chance to sample the delights of the Le Mans Classic only comes around every two years, so make sure you don’t miss out on it in 2020.
It’s only open to models which competed in the Le Mans 24 Hours between 1923 and 1981, with priority given to cars that have actually raced in the event – so you’re pretty much guaranteed a line-up of motorsport icons. That usually extends to the drivers, too: in 2018, the likes of Derek Bell, Jochen Mass and René Arnoux took part.
But even aside from the racing, a trip to the Classic is a must – there’s a wonderful camaraderie in the grandstands and around the campsites that dot the circuit. As C&SC’s own Martin Port said in his 2018 report, “It’s an event where friendships are cultivated, belly-laughs are enjoyed and memories made, all in the company of some of the world’s finest classic cars.”
Fancy it? We’re holding one of regular Reader Runs to the Le Mans Classic and we’d love for you to join us.
Goodwood Festival of Speed 2020
When: 9-12 July 2020
Where: Goodwood Estate, West Sussex, UK
If the later Revival is Goodwood’s premier historic festival, then the FoS is its modern equivalent. But don’t rule it out on those grounds – because in among the hypercar launches and tech showcases, you’ll also find masses of classic treats.
In 2019, for instance, the central feature was dedicated to Aston Martin and a selection of the British marque’s most famous cars took to the track over the weekend. The Cartier Style et Luxe concours was also absolutely brimming with beautiful icons from yesteryear, Bentleys were out in force on the hillclimb and the Porsche 917’s 50th birthday was celebrated with a track procession.
In short, there’s a lot more to the Festival of Speed than the modern machines – and besides, they’re quite a lot of fun to look at too.
Auto Royale 2020
When: 17-19 July 2020
Where: Althorp House, Northamptonshire, UK
Auto Royale is a new entry into the high-end international event calendar and will feature a 150-car concours plus vintage, classic and supercar car club displays, specialist trade stands and more.
The ‘British International Concours d’Elegance’ will see entrants compete for category awards and the Best of Show accolade, with classes for everything from Edwardian-era vehicles right up to ’80s cars.
And if the location – the magnificent Althorp Estate in Northamptonshire – sounds familiar, that’s because for more than 500 years it’s been the ancestral home of the Spencers, AKA Diana, Princess of Wales’ family.
Festival of the Unexceptional 2020
When: 25 July 2020
Where: Grimsthorpe Castle, Lincolnshire, UK
A cheap and very cheerful antidote to the more exclusive affairs taking place elsewhere this summer, the brilliant Festival of the Unexceptional swaps multi-million pound motors for those everyday heroes we used to drive but now rarely see on the road.
In short, don’t expect to see too many Ferraris or Lamborghinis: last year’s event was won by a 1977 Morris Marina Deluxe Estate ahead of a 1978 Vauxhall Chevette Deluxe E saloon.
With a change of venue for 2020, expect the Hagerty-organised extravaganza to be bigger and better than ever.
Silverstone Classic 2020
When: 31 July – 2 August 2020
Where: Silverstone Circuit, Northamptonshire, UK
One of the biggest classic car-focused events on the calendar, the Silverstone Classic takes over the home of the British Grand Prix for three days each year and serves up a packed programme of world-class track action.
But there’s more! You also get huge (and that’s an understatement) numbers of car clubs, plus trade stands, entertainment and fun for the kids. And given that it’s the event’s 30th anniversary in 2020, you can expect plenty more besides.
It’s a great opportunity to get close to a host of super historic racers and enjoy a fun family day out – and early bird tickets are available now.
Monterey/Pebble Beach Car Week 2020
When: 7-16 August 2020
Where: Monterey/Pebble Beach/Carmel, California, USA
The world’s premier classic car festival takes place over nearly two weeks in several sun-kissed locations around the town of Monterey and the nearby resort of Pebble Beach in California.
There’s a wealth of events, including big-ticket auctions hosted by RM Sotheby’s, Bonhams and Gooding & Co, quirky fare such as the Little Car Show and Concours d’Lemons and glitzy affairs including the Concorso Italiano and Pebble Beach Tour D’Elegance. It all peaks with the Pebble Beach Concours D’Elegance: probably the finest of all such classic car competitions.
When: 7-9 August 2020
Where: Nürburgring, Germany
The Nüburgring needs no introduction for petrolheads, so what better than a summertime motorsport extravaganza in this iconic setting?
Racing at the AvD-Oldtimer-Grand-Prix takes place on both the Grand Prix circuit and the famous Nordschleife, and attracts around 60,000 visitors to enjoy seven decades of motorsport at one of the biggest such events in the world.
Once you’ve left the ferry port or train terminal, the ’Ring isn’t as far away as you might think – a trip is awfully tempting, isn’t it?
Salon Privé 2020
When: 3-6 September 2020
Where: Blenheim Palace, Oxfordshire, UK
Salon Privé is now firmly established as one of the UK’s best classic car shows, a position cemented in 2018 when it was chosen as one of the eight concours events eligible for the Peninsula Classic Awards.
The location doesn’t hurt: it takes place in the grounds of the stunning Blenheim Palace in Oxfordshire, a backdrop which can’t help but make the beautiful classics on display look even more breathtaking.
In addition to the concours itself, there are driving tours, exclusive hypercar debuts and enough luxury brands on offer that you could be forgiven for thinking you’ve accidentally wandered into a Harrods summer party.
Concours of Elegance 2020
When: 4-6 September 2020
Where: Hampton Court Palace, Surrey, UK
After several years spent moving around various royal palaces, the Concours of Elegance settled into a five-year residency at Hampton Court Palace in 2017 – and swiftly proved that it’s the perfect backdrop for priceless classic cars.
Sixty of the rarest vehicles from around the world will take part in the concours – which, unusually, is voted for by the owners of the cars themselves. And with many of the classics also joining in on a two-day driving tour prior to the concours itself, there’ll be plenty of opportunities for visitors to cast their eyes over the machines on display.
Goodwood Revival 2020
When: 11-13 September 2020
Where: Goodwood Estate, West Sussex, UK
The highlight of the classic car year, in the UK at least, has to be the Goodwood Revival.
Why? Well partly because it offers three days of wheel-to-wheel racing in often priceless classics. But more than that, the Revival has always been about the whole feel of the thing. Everyone dresses up in fabulous period style, there’s a retro funfair, ’30s-era shops and evocative buildings everywhere… even the music is in keeping with the ethos.
Frankly, you’d have a wonderful time even if you didn’t watch a single race or didn’t even like cars. Although that said, the car park is so packed with delectable classics that it’s an attraction in itself!
Castle Combe Autumn Classic 2020
When: 3-4 October 2020
Where: Castle Combe, Wiltshire, UK
The Autumn Classic is an event that sometimes seems to fall off the classic car radar, but we think it deserves much praise.
This is especially true for 2020, because the event has grown into a two-day festival to mark the circuit’s 70th birthday.
Expect a plethora of club stands and superb wheel-to-wheel racing with an access-all-areas paddock, all a short drive from the M4 in Wiltshire.
Zoute Grand Prix 2020
When: 8-11 October 2020
Where: Knokke-Heist, Belgium
Don’t let the name fool you: Zoute is about far, far more than just historic racing, though that does indeed play its part.
This event in the Belgian town of Knokke-Heist packs a lot into its four days, with a rally, GT tour, Bonhams auction and a modern car show, but it’s the concours d’elegance we’re most excited about.
More than 70 elegant preand post-war cars will compete, and, given that top honours have in the past gone to a lovely 1948 Alfa Romeo 6C-2500 SS Touring coupé and a stunning 1936 Mercedes-Benz 540K Cabriolet A, the quality is sure to be high.
When: 9-11 October 2020
Where: Royal Exhibition Building, Melbourne, Australia
Australia’s best car show is a three-day affair, which kicks off with a parade through the centre of Melbourne and includes both a concours d’elegance and a classic motor show.
The 2019 edition featured displays to mark the anniversaries of Citroën, Bentley, Abarth, Alvis, Mini and local favourite Bolwell and while we don’t yet know what 2020 will have in store, we’re sure it’ll be worth the trip.
London to Brighton Veteran Car Run 2020
When: 1 November 2020
Where: various locations from Hyde Park to Brighton seafront, UK
As the world’s oldest motoring event, the London to Brighton Veteran Car Run should need no introduction.
The next running is on 1 November 2020 and we’re sure many participants will be hoping for unseasonably mild conditions. Whatever the weather, expect a spectacular range of pre-1905 vehicles and even if you’re not taking part, why not join the crowds and cheer on the cars as they tackle the famous route.
NEC Classic Motor Show 2020
When: 13-15 November 2020
Where: NEC, Birmingham, UK
The UK’s biggest indoor classic car event is also one of the biggest and best anywhere in the world. We’re talking, of course, about the Classic Motor Show, which takes place at the NEC in Birmingham and which offers a bewildering array of halls packed with beautiful classics.
There really is a huge amount to get stuck into, from literally hundreds of club stands to dealer displays, a vast trade area, and even a live stage featuring celebrities aplenty; no matter what point you’re at in your classic car ownership journey, there’ll be something for you.
What’s more, the Classic & Sports Car team will be out in force at the show and will reveal the winners of the C&SC Club Awards that same weekend. The 2019 version was superb, and we’re very much looking forward to doing it all over again.
The only downside? With a million square metres to cover, you’ll need to wear comfy shoes…
InterClassics Brussels 2020
When: 20-22 November 2020
Where: Brussels Expo, Brussels, Belgium
The Brussels leg of the excellent InterClassics shows is always a real pre-Christmas cracker.
We don’t yet have any information about the 2020 edition, but in 2019 the two main features were a 15-car tribute to the great Italian designers and a 15-car Bentley display – which certainly demonstrates the kind of quality on offer here.
And with clubs, dealers, awards and even a dedicated art area also on offer, there’ll be plenty of other attractions to keep you busy.
Please confirm an event’s dates and details before setting out
Images: Amy Shore Photography/Jakob Ebrey/James Mann/Tony Baker/Alastair Clements/Lizzie Pope/Chris Gage/Mark Constanduros/Greg MacLeman/Tim Scott/Fluid images/Dominic Hinde/Matt Ankers/Will Williams/A Dellenbach/Alexis Goure