autoweek-2016-3flag_cinecars_dutchHaving a nice cup of coffee whilst drooling over cars, Cars and Coffee has become the next big thing in the Netherlands. Martin Philippo went to see what they make of it.

A cars and Coffee is originally an American thing. In essence it is quite simple: find a parking lot and invite your friends to come over on an early morning to talk about cars over a cup of coffee. It’s a no strings attached thing: nobody needs to report in or out or make reservations and nobody pays anything. In the Netherlands things are usually a bit more organised. Maybe that’s how the Dutch like it. It was definately the way things went at that recent Cars and Coffee, somewhere on a lovely summers day in september. CineCars went to have a look.

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autoweek-2016-36While the adjoining slip road becomes a temporary drag strip for drivers with increased testosterone levels, the actual event, a mega Cars and Coffee, takes place in a parking lot on an industrial estate. According to sources up to 400 different cars are present. We didn’t count but we believe it. A large variety of cars is displayed, accompanied by enthusiastic owners eager to tell all about their pride and joy. The car owners are just as varied, from young men, normally involved in tuned-up Honda’s to a moustached owner of an imitation Bugatti, complete with pilot’s jacket and ditto hat. Old men driving 1950s Mercedesses chat amiably with young bucks, the love of cars makes them equal, and the Cars and Coffee is the ideal stage.

autoweek-2016-37But it is not just Cars and Coffee, a whole show is organised. The unveiling of a new concept car by Opel that shows remarkable similarity to the well known Opel GT by famous vlogger Werner Budding. Aston Martin and McLaren are showing their new models and the three best in show are chosen from the cars present. The winner of the Classic class drives an original Ford Granada coupé with a 2.3 litre engine. It is the  familiar story of a beloved car driven only on high days and holidays, left to languish for years after the death of the owner until it was finally sold.  Even the vinyl roof looks factory new. A well deserved winner.

autoweek-2016-41A number of companies use this event to showcase their wares, which allows us to see among other things the new Tesla models, one of which had gullwing doors just like the 6.2litre Merecedes SLS AMG. We would have preferred to have seen the original Gullwing, but you can’t have everything! Not new, but the amazing Adenauer Mercedes Benz from 1960 is for sale. For those with the money to spare the possibility to drive in a real 300D of which  a very few were ever produced. Just three thousand left the factory. Who wouldn’t want to drive away in a smooth automatic with power steering.

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autoweek-2016-16While walking around we can see plenty of automobiles that cause our car-loving heart to beat faster. There are numerous Italian supercars but also American V-8’s shining in the sun. Some cars are super rare, some were just everyday cars in their time. Who would have thought that they would ever become special. A Renault 9, once a very boring car but now appreciated as a survivor. Mini’s will always melt our hearts and the TVR is still a car to linger over.  There is no live music but the roar of a six-cilinder or a Japanese turbo engine is music to our ears.

Two hours later, a last cup of coffee and it is time to go home. The organisers can look back on a successful event and we enjoyed it too. The fact that it wasn’t as spontanious as the American originals is something we take for granted. That is something for the next time.