Spectacular display of key vehicles will mark the movie’s 50th anniversary. Words James Elliott.
The surviving cars from the era-defining car flick The Italian Job are set to be reunited to mark the 50th anniversary of the movie, the gathering is to take place at the London Classic Car Show at ExCeL on 14-17 February, in a special display promoted by Edrive.one.
Organisers say they have already secured the attendance of one of the film’s two Jaguar E-types, plus the Aston Martin DB4 Convertible that was supposedly tipped over a cliff by a bulldozer – a Caterpillar 944A, no less – but substituted for a Lancia Flaminia at the key moment. As Drive-My went to press, negotiations were at an advanced stage to try to bring the Lamborghini Miura over from its current home in Switzerland.
While the red, white and blue Minis from the film no longer exist (despite coming out a decade after the Mini was launched, The Italian Job was credited with boosting interest in the model and especially the hot Cooper ‘S’), authentic-looking substitutes will be used. It is also hoped that the restoration of a Harrington Legionnaire coach – the original was scrapped in the 1990s – will be finished in time for the event.
the original cars and replicas will be complemented by other vehicles of the type that appeared in the epic chase movie, which centred on a gold bullion heist in Turin and starred Michael Caine, Noel Coward, Benny Hill and a host of other ‘names’.
As fans of the Troy Kennedy Martin-scripted film will know, that could mean everything from the menacing ‘mafia black’ Fiat Dino Coupe the Brit raiders met in the mountains en route to Turin, to the Alfa Romeo Giulia Super police cars that were embarrassed on the roof of what is now the Palavela arena, then there are the support vehicles such as the converted Ford Thames van and, of course, the Land Rover. For many, the icing on the cake would be the OM Furgonato Sicurezza van.
Now in its fifth year, the 2019 London Classic Car Show will also incorporate a Historic motorsport area, a celebration of the career of Jaguar design chief Ian Callum, car clubs, and non-stop entertainment and chat with stars in the Supaguard theatre, which in the past has hosted the likes of Nigel Mansell, Derek Bell, Jacky Ickx, Vicki Butler-Henderson, Sir Stirling Moss and Ari Vatanen.
While the centrepiece will remain the constant parades on the uniquely indoors Grand Avenue, one of the highlights in February will undoubtedly be a showcase of aero-engined cars curated by TV presenter and engineer Edd China. Among them will be Parry-Thomass 27-litre Babs, a similarly sized Hispano-Suiza V12 and a 1921 GN Curtiss.
For more details see thelondonclassiccarshow.co.uk.
‘THE RESTORATION OF A HARRINGTON LEGIONNAIRE GOAGH SHOULD BE FINISHED IN TIME FOR THE SHOW IN FEBRUARY’
RGR COLLECTION + ALAMY STOCK PHOTO / AF-ARCHIVE + ALAMY STOCK PHOTO