Monterey Auto Week: Legends of the Autobahn


In the cabal that is Monterey Auto Week, an upstart appeared in 2009. It went by “Legends of the Autobahn“. It is a free event held just down the road from The Quail’s Motorsport Gathering, a prestigious event that is second only to Sunday’s Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance.

What is Legends? Essentially, it is a true grassroots car show that is organized by the BMW, Mercedes, Porsche, and Audi owners clubs. Participants drive their cars to the show (there are no trailer queens) and spectators gawk. You would think that you have seen every 1970s and 1980s German car already, but you will always be surprised at Legends. Take the jump and check out the exotica I saw this year. 


I can understand why Volkswagen is excluded. It’s not prestigious enough and not many of its cars belong in the passing lane of the autobahn. But this W12 Phaeton I parked next to should definitely be allowed in the show.


This B-Class-based F-Cell Mercedes is completely foreign to me. Apparently, 70 are in California. I can’t tell if the owner of this car is being ironic.


Two red Merc SL convertibles– old and older.


I don’t know how this Syncro with Dutch plates snuck onto the field.


This E28 Alpina B7 Turbo was the fastest sedan in its day. With a whopping 320(!) horsepower, it catapulted to 100 clicks in 4.8 seconds.


When I was a kid in the mid-80s, I somehow got a hold of an AMG catalog. I wish I still had it. This black W126, surprisingly, does not belong to Ice-T.


Engine bay of Mercedes 500E, which was a collaboration with Porsche.


2.3-16 Cosworth engine bay.

Here are two very different BMWs.



Each of the featured manufacturers always brings in a car or two from their respective collections. Audi brought this Le Mans racer.



Porsche Dakar racer.



Mercedes brought this gorgeous and stately Pullman. 


This 450SLC was the only W116 represented. I was surprised there wasn’t a single 6.9 450SEL.


If you make it out to Monterey Auto Week in the future, I highly recommend this laid back show. And best of all, it’s free!

Images source: Copyright 2013 Hooniverse/Jim Yu

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

The maximum upload file size: 64 MB. You can upload: image, audio, video. Links to YouTube, Facebook, Twitter and other services inserted in the comment text will be automatically embedded. Drop files here

20 responses to “Monterey Auto Week: Legends of the Autobahn”

  1. Peter Tanshanomi Avatar
    Peter Tanshanomi

    Nice to see guys doing something like this strictly Für die Liebe von dem Fahrzeug.

    1. monkey_tennis Avatar

      So I learnt something today: German for "shits & giggles".
      I think.

  2. The son of Gimmi Avatar
    The son of Gimmi

    I remember my dad had a E28 Alpina B7 Turbo when he was working at Lotus F1.

    1. Maxichamp Avatar

      Hey! How are you? How's your dad doing?

      1. The son of Gimmi Avatar
        The son of Gimmi

        He keeps himself busy haha !
        He's in Japan now, he moved there to be closer to Suzuka, his favorite track. He bought a Benetton b197 roller chassis, his latest project. He plans to put a Judd 4.0L V8 in it, it will make a great track day car haha !
        Crazy old man!

      2. Peter Tanshanomi Avatar
        Peter Tanshanomi

        He's good…getting used to the colostomy. He and mom are planning a trip down to Florida to visit my aunt, which will be his first time traveling since the surgery. So, ya know, that's pretty cool.
        Oh, not me? Oops, nevermind.

  3. Irishzombieman☆ Avatar

    GAAAH! All those old Beemers!

  4. LTDScott Avatar

    I'm pretty sure that 1600 was in a Katy Perry video. I only know this because I read about it somewhere and I'm pretty sure it had those same plates in the video.

    1. ˏ♂ˊ mzs zsm msz esq Avatar
      ˏ♂ˊ mzs zsm msz esq

      I think you're right, but they obscured it some:… There is a Katy Perry video where she drives a Volvo 240, I know this cause of an animated gif, I'm sad.

  5. david42 Avatar

    Ready for some pendantic Teutonic car trivia? (Rhetorical question!)
    The 450SLC is actually a R107 (well, really a C107), which is a much closer relation to the W114… sort of the E-class of its day, as opposed to the S-class W116. The next generation of SL was also very much an E-class (W124) under the skin.

  6. Scandinavian Flick ★ Avatar
    Scandinavian Flick ★

    How the heck do you find out about these types of events in advance? Is there some kind of local automotive event listing somewhere? I keep finding out about them in retrospect…
    I did really enjoy the Good Guys Car Show this last weekend, but everyone knows about those…

    1. Maxichamp Avatar

      Here you go, dude.
      And according to my own Bay Area car show calendar, the Orinda car show is next.

      1. Scandinavian Flick ★ Avatar
        Scandinavian Flick ★

        Excellent, thanks! Looks like there's still a few good events left in car show season. At the very least, I know I'll be checking out the Alameda car show. There's a Volvo gathering that runs on the same weekend right around the corner from it. Hopefully I'll have my brick running by then…

        1. Maxichamp Avatar

          Of the remaining shows, Alameda is my favorite. Although, at the last Orinda show, there was a Spyker and an Eldorado convertible conversion.

  7. Rover1 Avatar

    Very economical design, keeping the coupe centre section from the early ( pictured in red ), to the later ( in silver ).Those coupes ended up as real works of art…
    <img src=""width="600"&gt;

  8. Tim Odell Avatar
    Tim Odell

    I admit it. I gasped at least once.

    1. Maxichamp Avatar

      It was the 1980s AMG, amirite?

      1. Tim Odell Avatar
        Tim Odell

        Alpina and AMG IN THE FACE!

  9. 0ToTuttiFrutti Avatar

    My granny has a red 450 SL convertible collecting dust in her garage. Except for the tan interior, it looks identical to the one on the right. The first time I drove it, I was shocked at how SLOW it was. Granny always called it the "Zoom Zoom 8", so I assumed it must be something quick.
    My pop explained that it was due to the CA emissions controls; the 3,700 lb dry weight, and 3-speed slushbox certainly didn't help. It did have the feel though that it would eventually make it all the way up to 130 mph.

%d bloggers like this: