It’s no surprise that manufacturers go the extra mile for Techno-Classica Essen, the world’s largest classic car show.
And while we doubt the exhibits at the show that runs from tomorrow to Sunday will be arranged alphabetically, if they were, we’d suggest you head to the letter ‘V’, as both Volvo and Volkswagen are bringing seldom-seen cars.
Star of the Volvo stand will be a 1935 PV36, pictured above, once owned by one of the company’s founders, Gustaf Larson.
Embodying the Streamline Moderne movement often described as ‘Art Deco on the move’, the PV36 is one of Volvo’s earliest models.
This low-mile example, chassis number 85, was kept by Larson for three years and, other than a respray, has had little work done to it.
It will be joined on Volvo’s stand by the marque’s first saloon, a 1929 PV4, a ’66 Amazon and a ’69 164, while bringing the story more up to date will be a 1981 240 Turbo, Volvo’s first turbocharged passenger car, and a 1995 850 T-5R.
Meanwhile, the three-part Volkswagen stand promises a varied offering.
Expect a celebration of the drop-top Beetle’s 70th birthday featuring a pair of rarities: a Karmann Cabriolet (Type 151) from 1949, the first year of production, as well as a 1950 Hebmüller Cabriolet (Type 14A), one of just 696 cars built.
There will also be a six-strong display marking three decades of record breaking.
Perhaps unsurprisingly, this also features a Beetle, because on 17 February 1972 it achieved a world production car record, which VW marked with its first special-edition vehicle, the Beetle 1302 S ‘World Champion’.
Next is a 1974 model, one of the oldest production Golfs, and the car in Essen was one of two to undertake a massive 30,517km road test from Alaska to Argentina.
Two Corrado G60s which set six class records at the Volkswagen test facility in Ehra-Lessien in 1988 will also be remembered at Essen, as will a Lupo 3L TDI which earned its place in the Guinness Book of Records as the most economic production car in the world in 2000.
And moving from the familiar to the bizarre, if you’re at Techno-Classica you should check out the 1982 three-wheeled SMVW (Volkswagen Ecomobile) prototype, which did 1491km on just a litre of diesel.
Finally, there the Volkswagen W12 that established 10 records at Nardò in 2001, before beating itself the following year and setting a new 24-hour record, all of which remain unbeaten.
And if you need to catch your breath after that, you can watch two trainee mechanics complete the restoration of a 1968 Type 3 TL, including an engine upgrade to Type 4 in VW’s third show zone. It’s the culmination of Fábio Lopes and Marvin Wiethölter’s work that began back in December.
The 31st Techno-Classica will take place at Messe Essen in Essen, Germany, between 10-14 April, and you can buy tickets here. We’ll be reporting from the show, so look out for updates later this week.