The 2022 Zürich Concours ended on the 17th of August and it was a full success. 93 vintage and classic cars gathered on the Bürkliplatz in Zürich to be assessed by the Jury. From very special prewar to more recent youngtimers everything was represented. The Zürich Concours was already held for the 18th time since its inception.
The Swiss Classic Concours was held at the Bürkliplatz in Zürich which is at the lakeside and easily accessible by public transport. The prominent square can be reached via the Bürkliplatz tram stop or by foot from the Stadelhofen train station. If you are coming to Zürich by car this can be sometimes a bit of a nightmare because parking is limited and very expensive. But you can park your car underneath the Europabrücke (Europe Bridge) which is located at the Limmat dam downriver. There, parking only costs 0.50CHF/hour and you can take the tram line 17 to the city centre via the station Tüffenwies.
The Zürich Concours is held near the lakeside at the Bürkliplatz
The event itself is held mostly in the shade and there are many trees providing protection from the sun which is not only ideal for the visitors but also for the cars. Nevertheless, don't forget your sun cream and hat. The event itself is free of charge and open to the public to gaze at all the beautiful cars. But keep in mind that Zürich is the biggest city in Switzerland and an event like this attracts a lot of people. Even though the Concours was held on a Wednesday, there were a lot of spectators. To get the perfect shot, it makes sense to arrive early. The classic cars start to arrive at 9 am and can then be watched and photographed during their arrival, registration and parking procedure. After the award announcement around 2:30 pm, many cars will leave right away again so make sure that you have seen everything before the announcement. The event closes around 4 pm and all stalls will start to wrap up their tents.
The Concours is organised in different categories with one special honour category. This year the special honour category was given to classic Cadillacs for their 120th anniversary. The other ones are standard Concours categories:
Prewar 1920 - 1945
Postwar 1945 - 1959
1970 - 1979
Youngtimers 1980 - 2005
The biggest category with a total of 30 vehicles was the 60s cars. In the 1960s car manufacturing exploded due to the golden age which was a turning point for the postwar economy. Many car manufacturers developed and produced new models during this period. The 60s category was followed by the 70s with 15 cars in total. Combined across all categories 93 unique cars participated in the Zürich Concours which is actually a big number of cars for a Concours.
In each category, three cars were chosen to honour the "Best of Show", "Best Unrestored", "Best Documented and "Publics Favorite" car. At a Concours d’Elegance a group of honorary judges, individuals who have made significant contributions to the automotive industry or motorsports, award a number of subjective awards to recognise standout vehicles. The cars are assessed by a scorecard and the judges rate the condition of the body, chassis, mechanics and interior. Additionally, the completeness of the car's documentation was also rated by the Motor Chain Team. All of these awards are very desirable not just because they honour the owner and his car but also because they can increase the vehicle's value as an investment. At the top Concours events such as Villa d'Este and Pepple Beach, this can increase the value of the car significantly. Villa d'Este usually features 50 cars (small premises) and the American version can feature up to 200 cars due to its larger space on the golf course.
I was invited by TMC and the Zürich Concours to be on the panel as a judge for "The Best Documented Car". Each category of cars was assessed by a team of 3 car professionals (the 60s category was assessed by two teams) who then looked at the condition, history and documentation of the entrant. Each judging team used a set of scorecards to determine the total point given to the car. After the assessment was completed, the team then nominated their top three winners. These nominations were then given to the judging panel for the award announcement.
The highlight of the show might have been the Rapport Forte Estate which was built only once. It was brought to the show by Georg Dönni from Dönni Classic Car AG. Rapport was a small car customiser founded by four young men in England back in the late 1970s. None of the founders were older than 26 years. The company name came from the address where they set up their base: Rapport House, Great Eastern Street, London. Rapport primarily converted Range Rovers for wealthy Sheiks but they also wanted to develop a car that could be built as a GT cabriolet, four-door saloon and station wagon. They approached designer Chris Humberstone who delivered what was asked. Rapport received 12 customer orders until they went under and declared bankruptcy. The first convertible prototype was built already but wasn't sold to a customer. The basis for the car was a Jaguar XJ12 which Rapport didn't disclose to its clientele. They simply welded the body on top of the Jaguar chassis. The car with the bankrupt's assets were then sold to the Patrick Motor Group which hired Avon Coachworks to convert the cabriolet into a station wagon. After the initial enthusiasm, they realised how many problems the car had specifically with the cooling system. The car hasn't been driven at all and only had 600 miles on the odometer. In 2009 Georg Dönni acquired the car and resolved all the problems so it could be driven reliably. Today, it has almost 5000 miles on the clock.
Check out the photo gallery with some of the pictures from the 2022 event.
Nils is a Swiss-German engineer who is obsessed with old cars and engines. He is the author of "The Ultimate Classic Car Guide - How to Buy, Maintain & Repair Classic Cars" and the founder of EVC. His passion has always been with old cars and everything that has wheels and an engine.