Sunday, August 2, 2009

British Transportation Museum Car Day, Dayton, Ohio, August 1, 2009

A dash from a 1959 Jaguar XK-150S
My favorite MG -- a MG TF-1500

The Engine from a Morgan
Saturday, August 1, was a big day for British car lovers. Dayton is perhaps an unlikely place for this -- but unlikely occurrences are very much a part of contemporary life. Thus, a huge number of British cars converged on Eastwood Lake Metropark. Sponsored by the British Transportation Museum, also a highly unlikely institution to be located in Dayton, this event was a decided success. The weather was great, swelling the turnout that included vendors and parts swappers. And the cars were luscious.
If you are interested in reading about the history of the British auto industry, send me an email and I will reply with a reading list. Two observations: first, the popularity of these cars is in large part due to the sensual nature of driving cars with no tops and that sound and smell like the cars of yesterday, not today. These cars were in no way appliances. They were to be experienced, maintained, loved, cajoled, whipped, and more. Not anything like a modern Japanese car that runs forever without much more than routine maintenance. Secondly, one wonders if a future generation will experience an American car day, in the case that our industry will ultimately be displaced by the Chinese and who knows others who are cursed or blessed with abundant supplies of cheap and docile labor. I doubt I'll ever see this, but I worry that my daughter and son-in-law might


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