A total of 845 rally participants enjoyed the luxury saloons, limousines, glamorous sports cars and rugged utility vehicles from the classy 1950s up to the latest models, in a rally on Sunday, August 18th.
Beaulieu Events Co-ordinator Sophie Boyes said: “For Simply Mercedes’ first year, we had expected around 300 cars to join the show, so to have over 400 Mercedes' drive in to take part in the rally was astonishing. It was brilliant to see the event come together on the day and it far exceeded our expectations.”
Motor racing entrepreneur Jonathan Ashman joined a celebration of 40 years of the G-Class and G-Wagen at the event and talked to visitors about test driving the first right-hand-drive G-Wagens in the 1970s.
Classic Mercedes enthusiasts were treated to the rare sight of a W136 saloon with its pre-war styling, as well as the late 1950s W121, early 1960s W110 with its dramatic tail fins, glamorous 1960 190 SL Roadster and 1964 W113 ‘Pagoda’ drop-top.
Models from the 1970s, ‘80s, ‘90s and beyond were also well represented, from a subtly modified and lowered 1973 W114 coupe to immaculate examples of the 190E executive saloon, plus R107 and R129 roadsters and coupes.
The modern Mercedes on show included the jaw-dropping Mercedes-AMG GT 4-door super saloon, impressive Mercedes-AMG GT C Roadster and CL500 grand tourer.
At the heart of the rally, Mercedes-Benz Club South Region turned many heads with a wide variety of its members’ prestigious cars.
Show-goers voted for their favourite Mercedes of the show in the People’s Choice Award with Stuart Haynes, from Worthing, winning with his incredible 1966 Mercedes 600 ‘Grosser’. One of the most iconic luxury vehicles of the 20th century, the huge metallic blue 600 impressed event-goers with its luxurious features.
Stuart said: “I always aspired to own one. In the five years that I’ve owned it, I have completely restored the car.” He was presented with a Beaulieu trophy and Autoglym car care pack by Beaulieu’s Financial Director Phil Johnson.
Also scoring highly were runners-up Keith Maiden, from Poole, and Lee Harvey, from Bournemouth.
Keith has owned his 2018 Mercedes G350 since it was new and personalised the 4x4 with the addition of a roof tent, camping kitchen gear and extra storage space. He said: “It always does everything with ease and is really versatile.”
Lee has owned his 2012 Mercedes C63 AMG for five months and in that time has fitted it with a K&N induction kit. He said: “I really love the car’s power and looks.” Both runners-up were presented with Autoglym prizes.
Simply Mercedes was Beaulieu’s ninth Simply rally this year and will be followed by Beaulieu’s final Simply event, Simply Smart on November 10th. For tickets and details of Beaulieu’s events calendar see www.beaulieu.co.uk/events.