London Classic Car Show



Original Poster:

285 posts

145 months

Saturday 15th December 2018
quotequote all
I'm off to the London Classic Car Show in February and was wondering if it is worth the extra cost of grandstand seats for the Grand Avenue? Looking at pictures of previous shows there are people standing at the front so I'm not sure if it's worth it. Any advice appreciated.


Ed Moses

233 posts

58 months

Saturday 15th December 2018
quotequote all
This will be the first year of having seating down the grand avenue so it will be interesting to see how it works, compared to previous years.


498 posts

75 months

Sunday 16th December 2018
quotequote all
Been the last two years running.
Never needed Grandstand seats before.

Although if there is seating all the way along this year then it may be different.

I managed to take this in 2017


2,374 posts

76 months

Wednesday 2nd January
quotequote all
The Grand Avenue's not as good as it's made out to be. Tickets for the London Classic Car Show without them squeezing money out of you because you want to sit down. Save your money and stand up.


1,299 posts

191 months

Monday 11th February
quotequote all
I'm a serial visitor to the autumn NEC shows but never been to the London one, how does it compare for size and variety?

Id really like to see the Italain Job cars reunited, and unless there are other similar events doing the same (Goodwood for example) may be my only chance to see the DB4 and E Type.



55,401 posts

186 months

Tuesday 12th February
quotequote all
I have just looked at tickets, having been before, and TBH, it’s 70 quid for three of us and that seems a bit rich for a shared exhibition centre site.

I am sure it didn’t used to be that much

London GT3

830 posts

179 months

Saturday 16th February
quotequote all
I went yesterday. £20 to park. £30 to get in. Very poor value. The show was smaller and worse content than previous years. I won't be going again although it feels like it probably won't be put on again.

Nik da Greek

2,312 posts

88 months

Saturday 16th February
quotequote all
I gave up going to the Excel show, despite it being about three hours quicker for me to get there than NEC. It's pretty poor, to be fair... as well as stupidly expensive for everything. Small, cramped and full of stands from companies who will take the one rusty wingnut you own from an E-Type aircleaner and build around it a completely bespoke E-Type that will be totally authentic. Despite the only genuine part being an aircleaner wingnut. And costing three times the price of just buying an E-Type, of course rolleyes

The "Grand Avenue" is a total gimmick and in fact the only thing that's maybe worth paying for are the stand seats.... if you want to see cars pottering along a couple of hundred yards, turning around and driving back again. In the case of some of them (F1 cars spring to mind) this rarely involves even getting out of first gear. Hardly a drenching moment of passion for the senses.

Every time I've been the Excel show I've left feeling like my wallet's been raped, my intelligence has been insulted and I've seen fewer amazing cars than any average weekend show in a muddy field. With the added bonus of the utter PITA that is getting into docklands. NEC is a different world, and about twenty times the size for similar if not less money

TL:DR it's st. Don't bother laugh


56 posts

64 months

Saturday 16th February
quotequote all
Got to say that I agree.
Not worth paying to go, was better a few years ago.
I can’t see it being on next year. The content is getting worse year by year.


498 posts

75 months

I went on Saturday

Enjoyed it as at the end of the day , its a car show in the off season.
Went drinking in London afterwards.

I agree that the grand avenue is a bit of a gimmick.
Older chap in his Ferrari F40 , drives up and down the avenue. Smug look on his face.
Doesn't go any faster than about 15mph. Doesn't even give some revs....

No Noise , no thrills.
I don't understand some of the owners , they own sports cars and supercars that are famous for having amazing engines, but won't push them a tiny little bit.
If you owned an F40 after lusting after them for years, wouldn't you make a little bit of noise for the crowd to share the experience with everyone a little?

My biggest gripe about the show is that it seems to be catering for the "Investment guys" rather than the actual "Car guys"
E.g , Quentin Wilson talks on which cars to buy to make the most cash....
Apparently buying cars to actually drive them isn't the priority these days.

Highlight of the show for me was the 2000GT
Don't get to see these very often in the UK

Also got a good look at the New Alpine A110.
Seriously cool car and i will be keeping an eye on the prices in the future!

Edited by FIREBIRDC9 on Monday 18th February 10:00


13,973 posts

197 months

It was rubbish this year - I really wouldn’t want to have paid £25 to go.


181 posts

132 months

Have to agree, very little special this time. Way too expensive and the only forgiving aspect is it's a car show in the off season and an excuse to look at cars rather than the TV.
Will it be there next year, not so sure.


1,316 posts

209 months

I felt the show was better than last year. Got to sit in a Le Mans GT40. The mix of cars was better. Just don't pay full price for tickets, as there were a lot of offers out there.


1,299 posts

191 months

Loose_Cannon said:
I'm a serial visitor to the autumn NEC shows but never been to the London one, how does it compare for size and variety?
I took the plunge and drove 255 miles to get there so will answer my own question for posterity and anyone doing a retrospective search.

Floor area? About 20% of the space devoted at the NEC, which is forgiveable, but only 50% of what they could occupy in their own building which is not. I dashed around thinking I needed to get into the other half of the building by 1pm only to find that was taken up by the Bike show and I hate bikes. Do they think it appeals to the same people?

Costs? The usual pisstake by those who build event venues miles from civilisation then penalise you trying to get there. £20 parking plus £25 each in. Luckily I got my tickets half price on Ebay the night before, don't ever pay full.

Attractions? Actually some really interesting high end cars but felt like a trawl through every classic car dealer's showroom. Loads of wasted space from those idiotic grandstands which just took up floor area that could have been given to cars, plus ste like Vision Express with a massive caravan doing free eyetests WTF??

Grand Avenue? bit of a gimmick, but some seemed to enjoy it. I just found it noisy, slow and smelly.

Food? Quite nice actually and plenty of variety, even if it was often flung at you by rude petulant immigrants who needed a class in people skills. Expensive enough that you wouldnt want to eat there exclusively every day but par for the course and a lot better than some open air venues with the old pork dip vans etc.

Verdict? If you live nearby its not the end of the world, but definitely not worht travelling more than an hour or two to visit. I'll never moan about the NEC again.


535 posts

82 months

quotequote all
We went along to the show on Sunday, some interesting cars on display but probably not worth the full entrance price and definitely smaller than previous years when they used halls both sides of the Excel pedestrian precinct area.
Here's a link to my photos from the event :


88 posts

9 months

quotequote all
I was very tempted, decided against it and after reading comments here, pretty glad I did. Shows in off-season are great, but only when enough effort goes in to staging one.

Robert -


388 posts

94 months

Went last year as I was given some complimentary tickets. Last year I was very pleased I hadn't paid. As mentioned above it was more an investor's show rather than an enthusiasts show.

90%+ of stands were not for tyre kickers and were businesses rather than enthusiasts or owners (The Dodge Viper race replica owners a notable exception, but they said the cost of exhibiting meant they wouldn't do it again). Unless you were likely to invest (or look like you had money to spend) you didn't feel welcome on the stands. Most stand managers were more used to investors rather than enthusiasts as they clearly couldn't recognise the rather odd breed that is the classic car enthusiast. They (we?) are more worried about their car than themselves and will often turn up to a show in the gear they wear to look after their car. Their car has probably also taken all their money so they're not dressed in the finest designer gear.

From the comments above it seems not a lot has changed and I'm glad I didn't stump up for tickets, train fair food etc. etc. I know exhibition space in London is very expensive so they have to get as much as they can for as little outlay as possible, but I personally think it needs a rethink and a re branding if it is to survive as anything other than a trade show.