In the Seventies every German used the Crème21 body products, today the brands name is used to rally the cars of an era where bright colours slowly faded into black.
Imagine a group of 240 youngtimers, about 500 participants and the beautiful landscape of Bavaria. Get the picture? Add some beautiful weather and you’ve got the recipe for the 2016 edition of the Crème21 Rallye. The 16th, to be exact. From the start in the Cité de l’Automobile in Mulhouse (France) until the finish four days and 1000 km later at the BMW Museum in Munich, everything was executed with German virtue and enjoyed thoroughly by those who participated. Harald Bresser reports.
The majority of the cars is of German origin. Not that strange, since the rally originated in a German car club and BMW is their main sponsor. Add the good built quality of German cars to the equation and the picture is complete. I think the largest group of the same make and model are BMW’s of the E30 range. From a simple green 321i (this is of course a joke towards the organisers) via various M3’s to several convertibles. Even a few Alpina’s are around. Mercedes-Benz is also omnipresent. Several R107-SL’s, two beautiful A124 4-seater cabriolets and the ubiquitous R129’s. Let’s not forget the W123 in coupé, saloon and stationwagon versions. Audi, VW and Opel are present as well, the beautiful red urquattro of Dutch participant and Crème21 Rally fan Hessel Terpstra stealing the show and several stages. The odd ones out? How about a white Lotus Esprit with Sir Roger Moore’s’ autograph on the bonnet. A 4-door classic Mini directly from the BMW Museum, a Renault 19, a Trabant stationwagon, a 2CV and a Mitsubishi Sapporo 2400. Amongst the smaller cars, a Fiat 126 bis and some more classic Mini’s.
The route takes us from France to Freiburg where we stay for two days. We visit several lesser known or small car museums and see what their collections consist of. For me personally the Volante Museum close to Freiburg is an eye opener, as is the Fritz B. Busch Museum in Wolfegg. The visit to the watch factory of Junghans in Schramberg, as well as the factory owners ‘Autosammlung Steim’ is also very impressive. The old fashioned ‘paternoster elevator’ together with the beautiful terrace building of the once world renowned Junghans watch factory paint a nice backdrop for a large group of car and watch geeks.
From Freiburg we drive via Schwarzwald and Bodensee to Augsburg. The visit to the Dornier museum in Friedrichshafen is a very nice lunch location, in which every participant can make his dream of being a pilot come true. The cars that don’t leak any oil are asked to park under the wings of some full size Dorniers in front of the museum. From Augsburg the route goes towards Munich. The start at the Hasenbräu location in the old slaughterhouse district of Augsburg is early but worth its while.The finish is at the new location of BMW Klassik in a beautiful restored old factory building they once actually produced their cars in. The traditional farewell party takes place at the same location. Most German participants dress up for the occasion, lots of Dirndls and Lederhosen are to be seen in Munich this night, although the Oktoberfest has not actually started yet. On the last day a small tour around Munich leads us towards the BMW Museum. Cars of all makes stand in front of this penultimate BMW MINI building. Goes to show that the Crème21 Rally has proven its existence and is taken seriously by the German car industry. Opel was already sponsor and this year is BMW’s second. Who will be next?