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We have all endured a difficult 2020, thanks to the COVID-19 pandemic, and while we’re not out of the woods yet, there is light at the end of the tunnel and event organisers are starting to confirm their 2021 calendars, in accordance with government guidance.
Wanting to be positive and to give us all something to look forward to, we’ve compiled a list of the classic car events in 2021 we’re most excited about.
Of course, all events are subject to the shifting COVID landscape, and while we will do our best to keep this page up to date, please check with the organisers before leaving home and always abide by the local COVID regulations.
Choosing our best classic car events of 2021 hasn’t been easy and we’re sorry if we’ve missed your favourite, but you can always check out our full classic car events calendar.
Here’s to a brighter year. Stay safe, have fun and don’t forget to take your classic along, too…
When: 22-25 April 2021
Where: Palm Beach, Florida, USA
As you might be able to guess from the name, it’s the 30th running of the Cavallino Classic this year, the prestigious concours d’elegance that celebrates all things Ferrari. In fact, so special are the cars presented here that the winners of the Peninsula Classics Best of the Best Awards in both 2019 and 2020 first triumphed here, a 1958 Ferrari 335S Scaglietti Spider and a 1954 Ferrari 750 Monza (above) respectively.
But it isn’t simply a world-class concours, there are seminars, dinners, a track day at Palm Beach International Raceway, a driving tour and more.
For the 2021 edition of America’s premier Ferrari event, all tickets must be ordered in advance – if the event is cancelled because of government guidance, tickets will be refunded.
When: 23-25 April 2021
Where: Monte-Carlo, Monaco
With the Grand Prix de Monaco Historique only taking place every other year (and being cancelled in 2020 for reasons we don’t need to explain), it always feels like a long wait for this classic motorsport spectacular – but it’s always worth it. After all, where better to take in historic racing than around the evocative, iconic streets of Monte-Carlo?
For the 12th edition there will be seven races from seven eras, and 170 cars taking part – a mouth-watering prospect now more than ever.
When: 25 April 2021
Where: Various locations across the UK
Americans have Thanksgiving, tennis fans live for Wimbledon, and classic car enthusiasts… well, we have Drive-it Day, the annual show of force for the UK movement.
As the name suggests, the idea is simply that you take your classic car out for a spin. Usually, there are dozens of UK-wide events timed to coincide with it, but COVID restrictions now prevent that.
Instead the event organisers at the Federation of British Historic Vehicle Clubs hope to curate a gallery of images from the day on social media using #DriveitDayMemories. Plus, for 2021 you can buy rally plates in support of the NSPCC.
When: 1-2 May 2021
Where: Donington Park, Leicestershire, UK
The Donington Historic Festival celebrates its 10th anniversary in 2021, so we’re expecting something special.
Usually, visitors can wander around the paddock, trade village and car club displays, but this year government advice states that the event has to be held behind closed doors. The good news is organisers are working on an online offering to keep fans in touch with the action.
When: 20-23 May 2021
Where: Amelia Island, Florida, USA
The world-famous Amelia Island Concours d’Elegance has a later-than-usual date for 2021, but is still expected to attract around 300 rare classic cars, and this year’s honouree is former Indy 500 racer Lyn St James.
As with all events this year, Amelia’s organisers are hard at work to make it COVID-safe, yet somehow we doubt that the additional measures will detract from the glittering array of classics on show.
When: 5-6 June 2021
Where: Bicester Heritage, Oxfordshire, UK
Finally, it’s time to get back to the former RAF base with the return of the Scramble open day – and the event is back with a bang with its first-ever two-day Scramble.
This family- and dog-friendly open-air event’s hours have also been extended, welcoming guests from 9am until 3pm, giving you even more time to visit Bicester Heritage’s 45 specialists and enjoy the curated display of classic cars.
COVID restrictions mean tickets are more limited than usual, so don’t miss out.
When: 8-10 June 2021
Where: London, UK
This mid-week extravaganza at the Honourable Artillery Company, tucked away in the heart of the British capital, is a compact yet high-class automotive garden party that each year welcomes 80 classic and modern supercars to its manicured lawns.
Even better, as a C&SC reader you can get 2-for-1 tickets with our exclusive deal.
When: 12-13 June 2021
Where: Shelsley Walsh, Worcestershire, UK
It probably won’t have passed you by that the Jaguar E-type celebrated its 60th birthday on 15 March, and the E-type Club is holding a big party at the pretty Shelsley Walsh Hill Climb to celebrate – and the generous types that they are, they’re letting Mini Coopers, which also turn 60 this year, join in.
Celebrating two British automotive icons, E-type 60 promises a weekend packed with action on the famous hill, demos, displays including all 13 E-type models and club stands, accompanied by live music and food and drink, as the spirit of the swinging ’60s comes to Worcestershire.
When: 25-27 June 2021
Where: Syon Park, Middlesex, UK
The London Classic Car Show heads to a new location for 2021, the striking, Thames-side grounds of Syon Park in west London meaning the team can bring guests an outside, COVID-safe event.
When: 2-4 July 2021
Where: Grand Hotel Poltu Quatu, Sardinia, Italy
Sun-kissed Sardinia hosts the sixth edition of the sparkling Poltu Quatu Classic, the glamorous Costa Smeralda and the five-star Grand Hotel Poltu Quatu ticking all the right boxes for a high-end concours d’elegance with all the trimmings.
It attracts all the right names, too, the iconic Porsche 917 Langheck in which Gérard Larrousse and Willi Kauhsen claimed second at Le Mans in 1970 declared 2020’s Best in Show, beating a Ferrari 857S to the title.
When: 3-4 July 2021
Where: Castle Combe, Wiltshire, UK
An addition to the calendar for 2021 is Castle Combe’s inaugural summer meeting, the Classic and Retro Race Weekend.
As you can see from the previous listing and when you scroll down, it’s got some serious competition for your attention that weekend, but being a two-day festival gives it a head-start.
Expect to see packed grids of saloons, GTs, Formula Fords, touring cars, hot hatches and more do battle around this famous track.
When: 4 July 2021
Where: Bicester Heritage, Oxfordshire, UK
For 2021, the Jaguar Enthusiasts’ Club’s festival moves to Bicester Heritage.
Expect celebrations of the E-type’s 60th, and of the Mk10, the XK8 and the XK150 at The Summer Jaguar Festival, plus it is 70 years since the marque’s first Le Mans win. It’s sure to be a big party, then!
When: 4 July 2021
Where: Stony Stratford, Buckinghamshire, UK
The streets of Stony Stratford will once more be filled with a fantastic array of classics as the popular Stony Stratford Classic Car Festival – known as ‘Classic Stony’ – returns.
Variety, access and a relaxed atmosphere are key to this event’s appeal. Whatever flavour of classic vehicle you like, you’ll be catered for, from concours queens and everyday classic cars from all eras, to ’bikes, military machines and more.
Free to attend, visitors are asked to make a donation to the Willen Hospice, which Classic Stony has supported for so long.
When: 8-11 July 2021
Where: Goodwood Estate, West Sussex, UK
If the later Revival is Goodwood’s premier historic festival, then the Festival of Speed is its modern equivalent. But don’t rule it out on those grounds – because in among the hypercar launches and tech showcases, you’ll also find masses of classic treats.
In 2019, for instance, the central feature was dedicated to Aston Martin and a selection of the British marque’s most famous cars took to the track over the weekend. The Cartier Style et Luxe concours was also absolutely brimming with beautiful icons from yesteryear, Bentleys were out in force on the hillclimb and the Porsche 917’s 50th birthday was celebrated with a track procession.
In short, there’s a lot more to the Festival of Speed than the modern machines – and besides, they’re quite a lot of fun to look at, too.
When: 16-18 July 2021
Where: Waddesdon Manor, Buckinghamshire, UK
Auto Royale is a new entry into the high-end international event calendar – and if some of the previews we’ve already seen are anything to go by, it will be a mouth-watering affair.
Expect vintage, classic and supercar car club displays, specialist trade stands and more, in the majestic setting of this National Trust property.
When: 17-18 July 2021
Where: Shelsley Walsh Hill Climb, Worcestershire, UK
Few events are blessed with a location as picture-perfect as Classic Nostalgia. And what’s more, Shelsley Walsh Hill Climb in Worcestershire is absolutely steeped in motoring history, as this charming yet often awe-inspiring event will soon remind you.
And it’s not just about static car shows, it’s an action-packed weekend.
It’s the event’s 10th anniversary in 2021, so what better reason to go? As well as full-pelt runs up the famous hill, we can’t wait to watch the Colin McRae and Richard Burns tributes.
Plus, the Classic & Sports Car Concours d’Elegance will return, open to all cars built before 1985 and with a judging team headed by our own Simon Taylor. There will be four classes, separated by age, along with an award for ‘Spirit of the Day’, with the overall winner to be part of the MAC’s display at the NEC Classic Motor Show in November.
And there’s more – and it is exclusively for C&SC readers. You can get 25% off the advance discount ticket price by quoting code ‘CSC25’, on Classic Nostalgia tickets booked by 23:59 on 30 June 2021. What are you waiting for?
When: 30 July – 1 August 2021
Where: Silverstone Circuit, Northamptonshire, UK
One of the biggest classic car-focused events on the calendar, the Silverstone Classic takes over the home of the British Grand Prix for three days each year and serves up a packed programme of world-class track action.
But there’s more! You also get huge (and that’s an understatement) numbers of car clubs, plus trade stands, entertainment and fun for the kids.
And given that the pandemic-cancelled 2020 edition was the event’s 30th anniversary, everyone will be ready to party in 2021!
When: 31 July 2021
Where: Grimsthorpe Castle, Lincolnshire, UK
A cheap and very cheerful antidote to the more exclusive affairs taking place elsewhere this summer, the brilliant Festival of the Unexceptional swaps multi-million pound motors for those everyday heroes we used to drive but now rarely see on the road.
With a change of venue for 2021, expect this extravaganza to be bigger and better than ever.
Monterey/Pebble Beach Car Week 2021
When: 6-15 August 2021
Where: Monterey/Pebble Beach/Carmel, California, USA
The world’s premier classic car festival takes place over nearly two weeks in several sun-kissed locations around the town of Monterey and the nearby resort of Pebble Beach in California.
There’s a wealth of events, including big-ticket auctions (RM Sotheby’s, Bonhams, Gooding & Company, Worldwide Auctioneers, Mecum and Russo and Steele have already confirmed for 2021), quirky fare such as the Little Car Show and Concours d’Lemons, and glitzy affairs including the Concorso Italiano and Pebble Beach Tour D’Elegance.
It all peaks with the Pebble Beach Concours D’Elegance on 15 August: probably the finest of all such classic car competitions.
When: 21-22 August 2021
Where: Weston Park, Shropshire, UK
Another new event launches this year, the Historic Rally Festival, which promises an action-packed and highly evocative weekend, including the first multi-venue historic rally in the UK, making use of classic ’80s RAC Rally stages.
Spectators will be able to watch crews tackle the famous Weston Park, where the festival is based, and in Telford on the Saturday, enthusiasts can watch scrutineering and the ceremonial start.
And just because it is officially a demonstration event and not timed, don’t expect the crews to be holding back. With Audi quattros, MG Metro 6R4s, Lancias Fulvia and Integrale, Ford Escorts and many more already confirmed, it should be quite a spectacle.
When: 22 August 2021
Where: Brooklands, Surrey, UK
Brooklands’ New Year’s Day meet is a highlight of the usually packed 1 January calendar for classic car enthusiasts – but no prizes for guessing why the 2021 edition was cancelled.
The new Summer Classic Gathering will be a hopefully warmer version, but still expect the same fantastic quantity, quality and variety of cars at the historic site.
When: 1-5 September 2021
Where: Blenheim Palace, Oxfordshire, UK
Salon Privé is now firmly established as one of the UK’s best classic car shows, a position cemented in 2018 when it was chosen as one of the eight concours events eligible for the Peninsula Classic Awards.
The location doesn’t hurt: it takes place in the grounds of the stunning Blenheim Palace in Oxfordshire, a backdrop which can’t help but make the beautiful classics on display look even more breathtaking.
In addition to the concours itself, there are classic car specialists, the UK’s largest club-only event on the Saturday, and enough luxury brands on offer that you could be forgiven for thinking you’ve accidentally wandered into a Harrods summer party.
When: 3-5 September 2021
Where: Hampton Court Palace, Surrey, UK
After several years spent moving around various royal palaces, the Concours of Elegance settled into Hampton Court Palace in 2017 – and swiftly proved that it’s the perfect backdrop for priceless classic cars.
And it returns for its 10th edition in 2021, featuring 60 of the rarest classic cars from around the world. And, as at Salon Privé the same weekend (see above), its Best in Show is automatically shortlisted for the Peninsula Classics Best of the Best, underlining the event’s status.
The Junior Concours, for half-scale hand-built pedal, petrol-powered and electric cars, made its debut in 2020. And 2021’s addition is a 30-car concours for anyone aged 30 or under who owns a car built between 1900 and 1999.
When: 4-5 September 2021
Where: National Motor Museum, Beaulieu, Hampshire, UK
The biggest outdoor sale of motoring items this side of the Atlantic returns for 2021.
Beaulieu’s International Autojumble is its most famous event – and for good reason. With the number of items on offer, if you can’t find it here, does it really exist?!
A relaxed event, hopefully blessed with sunshine, it isn’t just the perfect opportunity to track down that hard-to-find part, it is also a great family day out because tickets include admission to all Beaulieu’s attractions.
When: 16-19 September 2021
Where: Bernina Pass, Switzerland
If you’re after classic motorsport in a jaw-dropping location, the Bernina Gran Turismo is hard to beat. The hillclimb’s 5.7km route takes in more than 50 corners as it climbs around 450m into the clouds on the closed-road event.
And, as you can see from this photo, the entrants only add to the visual spectacle, classic racing and sports cars built up to 1990 eligible to compete.
This year will be the event’s eighth running and it is sure to once more thrill competitors and spectators alike.
Plus, for the first time the event is part of International St Moritz Automobile Week which also includes two other, both new-for-2021 events, the competitive Kilomètre Lancé - Alpine 1000 and a concours, the Motorsport Rendezvous.
When: 17-19 September 2021
Where: Goodwood Estate, West Sussex, UK
The highlight of the classic car year, in the UK at least, has to be the Goodwood Revival.
Why? Well partly because it offers three days of wheel-to-wheel racing in often priceless classics. But more than that, the Revival has always been about the whole feel of the thing. Everyone dresses up in fabulous period style, there’s a retro funfair, ’30s-era shops and evocative buildings everywhere… even the music is in keeping with the ethos.
Frankly, you’d have a wonderful time even if you didn’t watch a single race or didn’t even like cars. Although that said, the car park is so packed with delectable classics that it’s an attraction in itself!
When: 25-26 September 2021
Where: Kop Hill Road, Buckinghamshire, UK
It looks like 2021 is set to be a special year for the Kop Hill Climb Festival because it will be celebrating the 110th anniversary of the venue’s first-ever hillclimb.
The centenary of Alvis is also being honoured, albeit a year late, as well as 60 years of both the Jaguar E-type and Mini Copper – the latter led by none other than a certain Mr Hopkirk.
A bigger-than-ever engineering village is planned, too, and it is all in aid of charity.
When: 1-3 October 2021
Where: Villa Erba, Cernobbio, Italy
We are sure you can guess why the Concorso d’Eleganza Villa D’Este organisers have moved the 2021 edition from its traditional May date to autumn.
But as backdrops to classic events go, you won’t get much better than the breathtaking shores of Italy’s Lake Como, so it will doubtless be just as stunning later in the year, tinged with the season’s hues.
Established in 1929, the world-famous Concorso d’Eleganza Villa D’Este is renowned for the incredible classic cars it attracts and we’re sure we won’t be disappointed in 2021.
When: 2 October 2021
Where: Castle Combe, Wiltshire, UK
First run back in 2012, expect a plethora of club stands and superb wheel-to-wheel racing featuring up to 10 grids, as well as an access-all-areas paddock, all a short drive from the M4 in Wiltshire.
When: 7-10 October 2021
Where: Knokke-Heist, Belgium
Don’t let the name fool you: the Zoute Grand Prix is about far, far more than just historic racing, though that does indeed play its part.
This event in the Belgian town of Knokke-Heist packs a lot into its four days, with a rally, GT tour, Bonhams auction and a modern car show, but it’s the concours d’elegance we’re most excited about.
More than 70 elegant pre- and post-war cars will compete, and, given that top honours have in the past gone to a lovely 1948 Alfa Romeo 6C-2500 SS Touring coupé and a stunning 1936 Mercedes-Benz 540K Cabriolet A, the quality is sure to be high.
When: 16-17 October 2021
Where: Goodwood Estate, West Sussex, UK
Here’s another regular fixture in the classic car calendar with a new-for-2021 autumn date.
The 78th edition promises a lot – 15 races, three demonstrations, and a rally sprint with potentially a dramatic, after-dark stage.
Tickets are limited and are for GRRC members only and those who are members of the Fellowship, but on the plus side you can join the Fellowship here for a yearly fee of £39; it offers other benefits, besides.
When: 7 November 2021
Where: from Hyde Park in London to Brighton seafront, UK
As the world’s oldest motoring event, the London to Brighton Veteran Car Run should need no introduction.
The next running is on 7 November 2021 and we’re sure many participants will be hoping for unseasonably mild conditions – and with this being the event’s 125th anniversary, expect bigger-than-usual celebrations.
Whatever the weather, there will be a spectacular range of pre-1905 vehicles and even if you’re not taking part, why not join the crowds and cheer on the cars en route.
When: 12-14 November 2021
Where: NEC, Birmingham, UK
The UK’s biggest indoor classic car event is also one of the biggest and best anywhere in the world. We’re talking, of course, about the Classic Motor Show, which takes place at the NEC in Birmingham and which offers a bewildering array of halls packed with beautiful classics.
There really is a huge amount to get stuck into, from literally hundreds of club stands to dealer displays, a vast trade area, and even a live stage featuring celebrities aplenty; no matter what point you’re at in your classic car ownership journey, there’ll be something for you.
What’s more, the Classic & Sports Car team will be out in force at the show and will reveal the winners of the C&SC Club Awards that same weekend. We had to host our first-ever virtual Club Awards in 2020, so we can’t wait to bring our ceremony back for 2021 and to celebrate with you in person.
The only downside? With a million square metres to cover at the NEC, you’ll need to wear comfy shoes…
Please confirm an event’s dates and details before setting out
Images: Deremer Studios/Amy Shore Photography/Jakob Ebrey/James Mann/Tony Baker/Alastair Clements/Lizzie Pope/Chris Gage/Mark Constanduros/Greg MacLeman/Tim Scott/Fluid images/Dominic Hinde/Matt Ankers/Will Williams/A Dellenbach/Alexis Goure/Olgun Kordal/Degler Studio/Richard Armon/Bernina Gran Turismo/Grundlicht 2020