1957 Ferrari 335 S and 1938 Mercedes-Benz 540K Autobahn-Kurier
1957 Ferrari 335 S and 1938 Mercedes-Benz 540K Autobahn-Kurier

Amelia Island Concours d’Elegance 2019 – Best of Show Winners

The Amelia Island Concours d’Elegance 2019 was held Sunday, March 10th on the fairways of The Golf Club of Amelia Island next to the Ritz-Carlton on Amelia Island, Florida.

With more than 300 cars and motorcycles in attendance, the judges at the 24th annual Amelia Island Concours were tasked with a difficult job of not only picking class winners, but also awarding the Best of Show Winners. The Concours awards Best of Show for two designations — Concours de Sport and Concours d’Elegance.

Best of Show Concours de Sport at the Amelia Island Concours 2019 was awarded to the 1957 Ferrari 355 S (chassis 0674) owned by Cavallino Investments of Cortland, Ohio. The 335 S was the most technologically advanced Ferrari in 1957, featuring a longitudinal 60-degree V-12 with 24 plugs, two valves per cylinder, twin overhead camshafts per cylinder bank that produced 360 horsepower.

This Scuderia Ferrari Factory team car started life as a 290 MM, was then upgraded to a 315 S and finally a 335 S. The car has a tremendous racing history spanning three seasons. Chassis 0674 participated in the major races such as Sebring, Le Mans, the Mille Miglia, and 1,000 km events at the Nürburgring and in Caracas. The car was piloted by some of the great drivers of its day including Juan Manuel Fangio, Phil Hill, Olivier Gendebien, Alfonzo De Portago, W. Graf Berghe von Trips, Peter Collins, Maurice Trintignant, Mike Hawthorn, Luigi Musso, Stirling Moss and Gaston Andrey. This was in the period 1956 and 1957 when Ferrari won the World Sportscar Championship.

Best of Show Concours d’Elegance at the 2019 Amelia Island Concours was given to the 1938 Mercedes-Benz 540K Autobahn-Kurier owned by the Keller Collection at the Pyramids in Petaluma, California.

In March of 1934, a new Mercedes-Benz debuted at the Berlin Car Show: “Autobahnen Kurierwagen 8-Zylinder Kompressor Typ 500.” Only one model existed and the brochures informed the public that this car was designed for incredibly high-speeds on the autobahns going as far to claim that the high winds at those speeds gave the car its defining shape. Mercedes-Benz built the new model on the existing W29 chassis.

Mercedes-Benz clientele at the time were conservative, buying only 761 W29 cars between February 1934 and November 1939. Of those, 342 were equipped with a 5-liter engine and 419 with a 5.4 liter engine as in this car. Both were equipped with a Kompressor. The remaining 70 chassis were sent to outside firms that would construct specials to client wishes.

“The 1938 Mercedes-Benz 540K Autobahn-Kurier and 1957 Ferrari 335 S both truly embody the sophistication of our awards,” said Bill Warner, Chairman and Founder of the Amelia Island Concours d’Elegance. “I was thrilled to watch the judges honor such esteemed automobiles and continue to recognize the best and most extraordinary vehicles in existence, right here in Northeast Florida.”

Amelia Island Concours d’Elegance 2019 – Best of Show Winners Photo Gallery (photos: DeremerStudios.com)

[Source: Amelia Island Concours; photos: Nathan Deremer / DeremerStudios.com]