I made an interesting discovery recently when I got my hands on a tome called “Top Muscle: The Rarest Cars from America’s Fastest Decade.” The team at Motorbooks had sent it to me for review and—unsurprisingly—I was expecting to learn a thing or two about rare muscle-cars when it arrived. Now, that did happen, but before I even opened it, I was first struck by the uncanny glow of the Daytona Yellow 1969 Douglass-Yenko Super Camaro on the front. The car had a nearly three-dimensional presence that brought its streamlined shape to life in a way you rarely see on the printed page.
Hey, long time no Savant! But where better than here to shine a light on the works of the American Motor Corporation, more fondly known as AMC? And I for one do remember it fondly. Of course, it helps that the company and I lived for a number of years in the same town, Southfield, Mich., where its gleaming, monolithic headquarters building still stands, surrounded by a tangle of expressways and service drives.
The appropriately named Plymouth, Mich., once again played host to the wonderful Concours d’Elegance of America a few days ago, and the event … eh, you know what? Let’s just skip to checking out a random assortment of the many amazing vehicles that were on display.
In addition to seeing a lot of cool cars at the recent Concours d’Elegance of America, I also had a chance to catch one of the first screenings of Wagonmasters, a 40-minute documentary that had its public premiere at the event. It’s the work of North Carolina filmmakers Sam Smartt and Chris Zaluski, and represents a paean to the classic American station wagon; that means full size and rear-wheel drive with an expiration date of 1996—when the last of such cars, the Buick Roadmaster and Chevy Caprice wagons, went out of production.
Even before moving to its current digs in pleasant Plymouth, Mich., the event now known as the Concours d’Elegance of America was considered among the top handful of such exhibitions in the world; it was definitely one of just two or three top-tier concours shows in this country, along with Pebble Beach and Amelia Island. Now, sprawling across the grounds of the ritzy St. John’s Inn, the Motor City’s other international auto show has taken a much higher profile of late—but they still gave me press credentials anyway!