Saturday,23 February, 2019
Current issue | Issue 1379, (1 -7 February 2018)
Saturday,23 February, 2019
Issue 1379, (1 -7 February 2018)

Ahram Weekly

Classics in Egypt: Classic cruise

It’s more than just owning a classic car from the golden era. Reliving the whole experience on the road is the climax

Classic Cruisers roaming the streets of Cairo

A healthy classic car that can hit the road with confidence is a sign of a good manufacturer, but praise must be equally shared with the owner for keeping it in such good shape after all those years.

From another angle, looking at a beautiful classic car and staring at every inch of its body and curves, smelling the leather and touching the real wood of the interior, is just the appetiser for the main dish. That main course is seeing this masterpiece starting up, hearing the engine and exhaust notes, smelling the essence of the past through the fragrance of its emissions, taking you back to the days before the definition of global warming.

“Classic cars should be driven quite often in order to be enjoyed,” said Mahmoud Ezzeddine, the CEO of Vintage Wheels Egypt. Through his company Ezzeddine has been holding classic car events in Egypt for some time. The classic car community in Egypt is growing everyday despite the restrictions on importing classic cars from abroad. Following the widespread appreciation of classic cars, many enthusiasts and later classic collectors started searching for neglected cars to begin restoration.

Classic Mercedes S-class

With the growing activity in the classic car community, calls by owners and collectors for more events grew. Everyone wanted to share their masterpiece and efforts at restoration with the public. The events mainly target the appreciation of classic cars and spreading awareness in the country, which at the end of the day adds more owners to the community and encourages current owners to expand their collection.

There are different types of classic car events in Egypt: the classic exhibition, in which Ezzeddine dedicates a place big enough for around 80 cars to be displayed while the masses can come for a day to see the cars up close. Another type is the classic meet, where owners get together over the weekend with their cars and get the chance to talk and share experiences, like last year when Ezzeddine and the classic community participated in the Vintage Air Rally event which passed by Egypt in 2016.

“We don’t only encourage people to take care of classic cars, but encourage them to drive their cars,” said Ezzeddine, who strongly believes that classic cars need to be driven from time to time for the owner to figure out any problems and fix them. This is part of the hobby, according to Ezzeddine.

Mercedes SL joining the convoy

Accordingly, Vintage Wheels started organising classic car cruise events with the help of other enthusiasts. The first event took place a year and a half ago. The next is on Friday 9 February.

“This time, the first cruise on the calendar of every coming year will be in memory of all the great people in our community who passed away,” Ezzeddine said. On 9 February, classic cruisers will meet at Oil Libya gas station in the Fifth Settlement starting at 9am. They will then take off at 10am for a 150km road trip to Ain Sokhna, heading towards the Circle-K gas station where they will stop for a snack and then head back to Cairo.

According to Ezzeddine, a rescue car will accompany the convoy, prepared with nearly everything to help any car that may find difficulties during the trip. Organisers will designate a speed limit according to the oldest cars to give them a better chance of finishing the trip safely without any difficulties keeping up with the convoy.

Ezzeddine is expecting a minimum of 25 and up to 40 cars to participate in the cruise. He added that cars from the 1930s are possible, surprising entrants, including a 1937 Chevrolet and a Buick from 1938.

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