April in Europe means it’s time for Techno Classica Essen. I’ve missed the last couple of years for one reason or another but am back at the 2017 show with Jonny Hart from Classic Retrofit. We’re also meeting Mark and James from EB Motorsport, Marcel from Restoration Design and Jonny will also be catching up with his new friend, Alois Ruf! Love it.
Mention Essen to most UK classic car people and they usually respond by saying they’ve been meaning to go there for years. I was the same until actually going and now it hurts me not to attend. So much goes on here that it is difficult to consider oneself well informed about the European market when you skip a year: you have to witness the prices inside the halls and the numbers on cars offered by traders and private sellers in the external exhibition spaces.
An incredible 1,250 exhibitors from 30 countries show their wares at Essen, with many more sharing stands alongside trading partners. The 2016 Techno Classica was attended by 200,000 people. More than 2,700 cars were on display, with an estimated total value of €350 million.
Manufacturers pull out all the stops and bring a wonderful selection of museum pieces to take us back forty years or more. There is so much Porsche stock on most other stands that it likely would not matter if there was no official Porsche presence: it would still be one of the most popular brands at the show and it is the surprise exhibits that create the biggest buzz.
I am looking forward to being back in Germany. Jonny and I are staying in the centre of Dusseldorf, at the same hotel I use every year. Dusseldorf is a nicer city to stay in than Essen and the trains back and forth are easy to use. We’re around from Thursday AM to Saturday lunchtime, so anyone else in the area can drop me an email, social media message or just post a comment.