Amelia Concours tradition seems to require the inclusion of a special class that stands apart from concours orthodoxy. Cars of the cowboys, advertising cars, hunting cars and the movie cars classes were popular, populous and well received...even by concours’ purists.
This year is no exception.
To acknowledge the 70th anniversary of the VW Bug’s arrival in America, the 24th annual Amelia Island Concours d’Elegance [March 8-10, 2019] will highlight an overlooked segment of Europe’s carrozzeria -- or, in this case, karosserie -- culture with a class of custom coachwork Volkswagen “Bugs.”
America’s VW phenomenon began 70 years ago, on January 17, 1949 when the M/S Westerdam docked in New York bearing the first Volkswagen to be sold in America.
Jacksonville played a role in the VW saga thanks to local import car industry legend Hubert Brundage. “Mr. B”, to his employees, was the “B-R-U” in Brumos. His name will always be associated with Jacksonville where, 60 years ago, he also created the Brumos Porsche Car Corp.
Earlier he was the southeastern distributor for Volkswagen and a Jacksonville VW dealer. Many people who knew Mr. B said he was a visionary: many claimed he was a genius.
On the 70th anniversary of Volkswagen’s commercial debut in America it’s appropriate to honor Mr. B’s vision and inclination to think outside the box. His esthetic and commercial sensibilities matched the tone of VW’s earliest foray into the American market, yet he was eager to reach beyond corporate convention.
“The custom coachwork VW is the flipside of the Bug’s original American mission and message: The perfect fodder for an Amelia Concours special class,” said Warner.
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