I went to my first Louisville Cars and Coffee in a few months this weekend. We planned to make it a family outing but my wife was tired so I decided to let her sleep in and enjoy good daddy-daughter time with my 20 month old, Mary. After all, I’m doing my best to raise this girl to be a gearhead just like her old man.
I packed up the diaper bag and her favorite Hot Wheels, the yellow Datsun 510, and we headed out in my ’86 Saab 9000 Turbo daily driver. If it were a bit nicer and cleaned up I probably would have shown the Saab, but we just parked in the back with the normal cars. This is the first Cars and Coffee that I’ve been to at the new venue, Captain’s Quarters, a restaurant and marina along the Ohio River in Louisville. It’s a great location to get a bunch of cars together and they have a booth serving coffee and pastries set up off to the side.
If you’ve never been to a Cars and Coffee event in your area, it’s worth checking one out. It’s an invariably eclectic mix of vehicles: exotics, muscle cars, hot rods, weird old foreign machines, boy racers — something for everyone.
As soon as we arrived Mary dashed off toward the first yellow car she saw, a Lamborghini Diablo. Yellow is her preferred car color these days.
A pair of Alfa Romeos: a GTV (left) and a roundtail Duetto Spider (right), immortalized by Dustin Hoffman in The Graduate.
A 1940 Ford coupe in foreground, my friend Tim’s brand new Fiat 500 in the background. Brown is such an underrated car color.
A couple of British beauties: Aston Martin DB Mk. III (left) and a Triumph TR3 (right).
A 1969 Pontiac GTO Judge — “The Judge can be bought.”
A pair of immaculate Lincoln Mark IIIs, just like the car used to smuggle heroin in The French Connection.
Mary with a yellow Mini, when I told her it was just her size she started saying, “my yellow!” Of course, she may have been talking about the Hot Wheels in her hand.
A perfect Lime Green Datsun 240Z. Last year I found one just like it for my uncle on Bring A Trailer and towed it up to him. I’m sure I’ll write about that in a future post here on theshiftpattern.
Three ’55 Chevrolets in a row. I’m really digging the subtle period modifications on the red Bel Air in the foreground.
More personal luxury coupes: a trio of three gorgeous first-generation Buick Rivieras, the epitome of 1960s American style and opulence.
A ’52 MG TD, I love it when the license plate makes it easy to identify (although I already knew what it was).
A Bahama Yellow 1969ish Porsche 912, one of my favorite cars at the event, the owner said that most of the paint is original.
A second-generation Chevy Nova with a 454 big block stuffed under the hood. I’m usually not a big fan of muscle cars with low profile wheel/tire sets but this one pulls it off nicely.
Another original Mini, a 1988 Designer, a limited edition Mini with an interior designed by Mary Quant, inventor of the miniskirt. This one was converted to left-hand drive before being imported from the UK and is for sale locally.
The owner was even nice enough to give my Mary a go behind the driver’s seat. I’ve never been behind the wheel of a real Mini myself, so the kid already has some gearhead cred on her dad!
One of my other favorites of the show, a gorgeous ’59 Porsche 356, note the original Kentucky license plate.
I’m typically not too big on the exotics, but here is a Spyker C8, made by the Dutch supercar company that unsuccessfully tried to save Saab after GM ran them into the ground. What a beautiful interior with the diamond quilted leather, turned metal dash, and artfully-designed pedals and shifter linkage. Their design would have melded so well with the Saab ethos.
A 1932 Packard Light Eight, their medium range model of the Depression era.
A 1969 Chevy Camaro convertible in the colors of the 1969 Indy Pace Car. I can say with certainty that this one of my dad’s favorite muscle cars of all time. (That is not my dad in the photo).
An Inka Orange BMW 2002 tii. One of my favorite cars ever, so perfectly balanced and proportioned. I really need to get one of these some day.
I could tell that Mary was getting a little restless so we made our way home after about an hour. She was quite a trooper, though. As we left around 10:30 more cars were still coming in, we passed a Jaguar E-Type and some kind of Ford Model T speedster on our way out the entrance. I’m looking forward to the next event I can make it to which should be in October. I’m going to try very hard to have my two-stroke 1964 Saab 96 ready to drive then, I can say with reasonable certainty that it will be the only one there!