Revival of iconic brands at 27th edition of InterClassics Maastricht

From Thursday, 16 through Sunday, 19 January 2020, visitors to InterClassics Maastricht will be able to reminisce about the gone-but-not-forgotten iconic car brands at this year’s edition of the event at MECC Maastricht. ‘Forgotten Classics – Epic designs from the past’ is the theme of the 27th edition of the classic car exhibition that is now one of the largest classic car events in the Benelux. Visitors will be taken on a trip down memory lane at the theme square thanks to 24 epic designs of the most memorable car brands that no longer exist, including Talbot Lago, Invicta, Hispano Suiza, Spyker, Voison, Bristol, Horch and Studebaker. These cars are being made available on loan by various international museums and private collectors. In addition to these 24 ‘forgotten classics’, more than 800 classics and ‘young’ classics will also be on display and offered for sale. Many different brand-specific clubs will also be represented, classics from a range of price categories will be auctioned and the first edition of the Sim Formula Europe event will be held. Held at the same time as the exhibition, this event offers an exciting experience for visitors, painting a picture of the world of e-sports and simracing through nail-biting races with Europe’s best simracers competing against one another live on stage.

Just a few of the prized specimens that will be on display at the exhibition:

Invicta S-Type, 1932  
Rolls Royce quality with Bentley performance

The goal of Invicta’s founder, Noel Macklin, was to produce a car that had the quality of a Rolls Royce yet which handled like a Bentley. He tried to combine the British qualities of roadholding and reliability with the American preference for engine performance and flexibility. Initially introduced at the 1930 London Motor Show, the car was made from the best materials available at the time, such as an incredibly strong nickel-steel chassis and massive cast bronze fittings of the highest quality. The S-Type was driven by a 4.5-litre Meadows six-cylinder engine. Only 70 Invicta S-Types were ultimately produced, and of these, 30 are thought to have been Carbodied Tourers. Invictas were often used for racing, rallies, hill-climb events and speed tests. In 1931, Donald Healey drove an S-Type to victory in the prestigious Monte Carlo Rally and won second place the year after that. In 1932, Invicta broke the lap record for Brooklands and won the fastest times at the Shelsley Walsh Hill Climb and the Stelvio Pass Hill Climb, as well as numerous victories in International Alpine Trials. The car has been made available by a Dutch collector.

 Invicta Stype800x600

Talbot Lago Grand Sport Coupé Saoutchik, 1948
One of the most avant-garde designs in automotive history

There’s no point in applying general standards to judge this type of car; this Talbot Lago is an automotive sculpture, a pure work of art. Function follows form and not the other way round. This extravagant expression of form is the handiwork of Jacques Saoutchik, a furniture maker who fled the Ukraine and set up his own coachbuilding company in Paris in 1906. His only goal was to make it to the top of the automotive industry, a feat he ultimately achieved in the 1920s. From the 1920s all the way up to the present day, his designs are considered the most avant-garde in automotive history. The exaggerated, almost voluptuous contours and the excessive use of chrome are typical features in Saoutchik’s designs. Note the bulging wheel casings, the subtle fins on the mudguards and the numerous chrome trims. All reminiscent of the flamboyant designs of the 1930s, this aesthetic was no longer appropriate or practical after the war. The world was focusing on reconstruction, and expensive cars like this seemed out of place. Ultimately only 36 Grand Sports were built. Antonio Lago, the retired Italian major and trained engineer who bought the declining French Talbot brand in 1935, misjudged the post-war opportunities. Although the brand did chalk up some racing wins, things quickly went downhill. Talbot Lago was acquired by Simca in 1959, though Saoutchik had already ceased operations a few years prior. The Louwman Museum in The Hague is making this car available on loan.

Talbot Lago