Every year in August, California’s Monterey Peninsula is transformed into an international hub of automobile excellence during the Monterey Classic Car Week. This impressive reunion of the world’s most elegant vintage automobiles embraces prestigious competition in the Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance and vintage motoring in the Pebble Beach Tour d’Elegance presented by Rolex. Together, along with the Rolex Monterey Motorsports Reunion, these events represent the ultimate in car collector passion and complete the Rolex portfolio for this famous week-long gathering in one of California’s most esteemed destinations.
Each year, on the final Sunday of Classic Car Week, some 200 of the world’s most prized collector cars and motorcycles gather on the famed 18th Fairway of Pebble Beach Golf Links for one of the world’s finest exhibitions of show cars: the Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance. First launched in 1950 to showcase the most avant-garde vehicles of the period, this event has grown into one of the most competitive collector car shows in the world. The Concours judges for historical accuracy, technical merit, style and elegance with the aim to recognize and encourage proper preservation of the world’s great automobiles. This gathering of motor enthusiasts and those who appreciate the finer mechanics of restoration is a true tribute to automotive history. This year’s 62nd Concours d’Elegance will take place on August 19th and will feature Maharaja Cars and the marques Mercer and Fiat, while special classes recognize Saoutchik Coachwork, AC and AC Cobra, Sport Customs and German motorcycles.
In 1998, the idea of a road parade paired with the Concours was introduced, marking the first Pebble Beach Tour d’Elegance, a tribute dedicated to the automobile in motion. The Tour is open to all entrants in the Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance and takes place the Thursday before the Concours event. This year, participating cars will gather early morning in Pebble Beach on August 16th, departing together in a parade that will pass through pine and cypress forests and over dramatic cliff sides to the beautiful crescent-shaped bay of Carmel-by-the-Sea. Here participants will enjoy a gourmet lunch while their cars are displayed on Ocean Avenue, before an afternoon return to Pebble Beach for a Champagne celebration at the finish. It is important to note that the Pebble Beach Tour d’Elegance and the Concours are directly linked: if two vehicles tie in class competition at the Concours, the vehicle that has successfully completed the Tour gets the nod. Rolex became Title Sponsor of the Pebble Beach Tour d’Elegance in 2007 and has been Official Timepiece of the Concours since 1997.