Hi, my name is Ben, better known to the Speedmagnet…
ASB Show grounds, Auckland, NZ
The eighth edition of the CRC Speedshow took place on the 19th and 20th of July at Auckland’s ASB Show grounds. With a record number of patrons fuelling their passion for all things automotive, this year’s show was noticably larger. This was evident, as multiple new car and motorcycle brands were on display.
This is one show where you get to see a whole plethora of cars and bikes, from a broad spectrum of vehicle marques. Add in a bunch of activities that cater for a large range of age groups, you have a destination event that is fun for the entire family!
The 2014 CRC Speedshow featured some significant new model launches. Auckland-based Ferrari dealer Continental Cars unveiled New Zealands first Ferrari 458 Speciale. Although it looks like the 458 Italia, this version is 130kg lighter with the emphasis on end user driving experience. Where do we sign up?
And the car that really stopped us in our tracks…
The Matamata Panel works ‘Eleanor’
This 1967 Ford Shelby GT 500E, belonging to Frazer McKenzie, was the star of the show requiring a full unveiling ceremony and for good reason too. Over 700 hours went into panel and paint for this car by Matamata Panelworks. Full steel widebody guards have been handcrafted and moulded into the body of the car. The steel work is covered in a custom colour named “Giggle Gas Blue” The complexity of the colour on this car needs to be seen to be believed – words can only describe so much.
A build of this level could not be achieved without a large and highly dedicated team…
Just the variety of cars at this event is worth the admission ticket alone. There are vehicles from a large spectrum of racing culture, there are show vehicles and there are restored vehicles. Some of the other cars that made us stop for a photo were:
“The Little Menace” Bubble top
This very unique hotrod owned by Luke Ennion made it’s way to Speedshow this year. Bubble tops rule, and this is no exception. Dropped to the ground, dripping with glow in the dark paint with a 351 Cleveland to power it. The interior with glittery red accents tops it off so nicely, this is nostalgia personified.
This 1969 Beetle has been chopped a substantial amount. The owner, Andy Connor, has given it a 100mm body drop to get it laying on the ground, whilst still retaining standard VW suspension for a plush ride. The bare metal “paint job” ties in well with the vintage wood accents. The wood panels around the car have been recycled from an old leaky house owned by Andy. Recycling is cool!
Black 1970 Plymouth Cuda vert
This 1970 Plymouth Barracuda convertible looks like a lovely fun summer cruiser. However, it’s packing a punch of 1050hp with help from an F1R Procharger. The hardest part of owning a car like this must be having the willpower to not use this vehicles attributes to their full extent.
’48 Chevy Fleetline Aerosedan
If we had to pick a car to go cruising in town on a Friday night, this would be our number one choice. Andrew Kitto of the North Canterbury Rodders club brought along his drop-dead gorgeous 1948 Chevy Fleetline Aerosedan. Looking super tough laid out on airbag suspension. It also has the ‘go’ to match the ‘show’ with 380hp from the 350 Chev engine under that beautifully bulbous bonnet.
This 1966 Ford Cortina owned by Gail and Peter Blakeley has some incredibly detailed paint work with a huge metallic flake running through it. A GM LT1 engine has also been squeezed into the engine bay perfectly.
Always a show stopper, Leighton Hamlin’s RB30DET-powered Datsun 240K was there in all it’s glory.
Ford Standard Coupe
It’s pretty plain to see why this car is called the “Taildragger”. Dropped to the ground on AirRide Shockwave suspension, coupled with a massive roof chop and a 454 Big block to pull it along the road. Badass!
‘MTPKTS’ Ford Cabover
This truck has been hand crafted from 9 sheets of panel steel and almost 3000 hours of work. With a colour called ‘peculiar green’ draped over it, Big Shed Customs have created a very unique vehicle.
‘ROTANK’ Mazda RX-7
Chris Hilton’s RX7 is making noise all over the internet. This car oozes personality, and the more you look at it the more of the little touches you pick up. With heaps of different styling cues taken from different parts of car culture, there is sure to be something to amuse everyone on this car.
This Ford F100 has the potential to ruffle a few feathers within the American car community. The full custom tube chassis for the body to sit on looks excellently engineered (it was on the LVVTA stand after all!). However, it’s not that piece of the build that could leave people confused. It’ll be the Japanese engine under the hood that will rustle jimmies. A Toyota 1UZ, often found in Landcruisers or Lexus LS400’s, has made it’s way into this car and has acquired a pair of turbochargers along the way. An epic cross-continental fusion of vehicles.
1955 Buick Century Riviera
This Buick Century Riviera had a black paintjob that looked deeper than outer space. When you look at the LS1 sitting under the bonnet, you’ll see the engine cover has been done in a “green back” print with American dollar bills. The process used is all ‘hydrocoating’. This engine cover was sent to Spraytec in Palmerston North who initially did the green back print as a joke for how much money has been poured into it. However, it was a joke that ended up sticking, and we’re glad for it, it’s a nice touch!
Curran Brothers Racing RX-2
For 2014 this car is running a Quad rotor (26B) with a turbo large enough to swallow Tasmania in a single gulp. With a power output variying between 1500 – 2000hp, the car is good for 6sec passes down the quarter. Rotary power at it’s finest.
Shelby Cobra Daytona
Shelby Cobra Daytona’s like this replica are a timeless looking car. This one manages to churn out 680hp from its supercharged 347ci V8 and puts that power down through a Tremec TK0600 gearbox built by The Gearbox Factory.
It wouldn’t be Speedshow without a few drag cars.
This drag car was sitting on the Meguiars stand. It is a 1968 Camaro (once upon a time maybe) that’s been turned into a doorslammer. It runs a personal best of 6.55 seconds at 208mph. It requires a 526ci engine to do so. In metric terms that’s 8.6 litre…. A little bit thirstier than your Dad’s SS Commy.
Karen Raggett’s purpose-built 27T dragster Evil 2.
Being in it’s 8th year of running, there were a few new features to the show, including the ‘Kiwi Young Guns’ stage which hosted a number of up-and-coming motor sport stars. We had a chance to catch up with most of these guys, the passion that they had for their discipline really showed through and we wish them all the best of luck.
While we are on the subject of talented people, Charlie “CHAZ” Allen was doing pin striping all weekend. The man can pinstripe anything and everything, tool boxes, helmets, motorcycle fuel-tanks and everything in between. He’s also right into airbrushing and has been trained by some of the best in the business.
Metal and Mud is the scent of only one motorsport – offroad racing. These offroaders are the vehicle of choice if a zombie apocalypse eventuates. Built tough with big power to run those virus-ridden freaks down. The white truck in the centre had some amazing fabrication for the chassis and suspension set up, with it’s LS V8 power plant sitting right back between the passenger and driver to centralise it all.
Unique race car…
These BMW M-Coupes are a rare beast. Rarity hasn’t stopped the owner of this fine example peddling it to a 1st overall in open class B championship for 2013/14 season of the BMW race series.
Honda powered Clubman…
This Fraser Clubman is a car you are almost guaranteed to lose your license in…. Dry sumped K20A Honda powered with a Rotrex supercharger slapped on the side of it. Ideal for losing traction and scaring the pants off passengers.
There were some super slick bikes there too…
This bike certainly made us double-take – could it be – a Suzuki GN250…? With hardtailed frame, trick throttle set up and intricate copper detailing it blew us away. Such a simple concept on a very simple and common bike makes one unique showstopper.
Royal Enfield bobber
This stripped back Royal Enfield was also an outstanding machine. New Zealand is really churning out some cool custom motorcycles these days.
In an effort to bring a sniff of what may come in the future, there was a whole stand dedicated to electric vehicles. The electric powered motorcycle was very interesting, and you would assume with an electric engines capability to deliver near instant peak torque, it wouldn’t be too hard to stand it on the rear wheel everywhere.
Classic Japanese motorcycle group Auckland.
These guys had some super shiny bikes, with some particularly mind blowing ones tucked in there. The standouts include a 1979 Honda CBX1000 super sport with a 6 cylinder motor tucked under the tank as well as a rare 1975 Suzuki RE 5 M, a factory rotary engined motorcycle!
Moving outside the show hall, there was a huge amount going on in the Ideal Wheels action arena.
The Supercharge Batteries Jet car did a demo start up, the jet engine is a GE J-85 originally from a Navy F-5 Tiger fighter jet.
A car was dropped from a crane, to simulate the damage a vehicle would incur in a 50khm head-on colison..
Celebrity go kart challenge..
When the toddlers finished racing it was time for the ‘celebrities’ of the motor sport world to have a go.
Speedshow really is a banger weekend, so if you didn’t get the chance to see it this year, make an effort for 2015. The countdown has already begun. Here’s hoping next year is bigger again, and brings more competition cars with it. We would want to see more race cars with a return to the roots and origins of the event. A diverse range of vehicles and a diverse crowd, from full-on gear heads to entire families that have come along with Dad to see all the automotive eye candy on display. The 2015 event will be back at the ASB Showgrounds on the 18th and 19th of July, don’t miss it!
Peace. Luke F