MOTOR XXX MEGUIAR’S MOTOREX
Following an absence of two years, Australia's largest indoor modified car show returned to its rightful home - Australia's harbor city. Words And PHOTOS: JON VAN DAAL
Irecently worked out that at the June long weekend this year, it was exactly 50 years since I attended my first hot rod show — at Roselands Shopping Centre in Sydney’s south. I find that hard to believe. When I was growing up, I had five sisters, and my parents soon worked out that it was easier to send me to boarding school to keep the peace. So, I was in luck, as I was in the right place. On that historic day in 1967, it took me two hours to make my way across town via two buses and a train — but it was well worth it. So, 50 years later what has changed? Well, that’s simple — the quality of the builds. Back then, most hot rods were street driven, so building one meant a balance between what was street legal, drivable, and what was the latest trend in the show scene. Many younger drivers had their cars as daily-drivers, and a lot were unstreetable with lumpy cams and boiling radiators rearing their ugly heads on a regular basis. Quality comes through when the car is under lights and being judged with a fine-tooth comb. It all comes down to the number of hours put into it. When you
know that Adam and Kylie Perry’s FB Holden had some 13,000 hours put into it, it is no surprise to see the car win the Grand Master and a gaggle of other trophies. I think I might have moaned two years ago about MotorEx slipping back to a bi-annual event, and, as such, I missed the debut of said FB last year in Melbourne. When I worked at Auto Salon, we used to do two events in Sydney and two in Melbourne but the promoters of MotorEx have a good excuse — they also have a few day jobs, with the marketing of Meguiar’s, House of Kolor, and Liqui Moly products. That said, a big announcement was made at the show: it was revealed that the company behind Summernats, Out There Productions (OTP), will be taking over the running of MotorEx in a copromotion, starting next year with the Melbourne event. With this in mind, maybe we’ll see an annual Sydney show in the not-too-distant future. I recently met a friend I hadn’t seen for five years. I told him it was good to see him but it was a long
time between drinks, to which he replied, “Welcome to 2017.” He then explained that there are so many different events on each weekend that people just have to pick and choose: “If I am into ’55–’57 Chevs, then, over the course of a year, there are lots of events I can attend just for them. If you are into traditional hot rods instead, then we might never cross paths, because we will be attending shows and events in different parts of the sport” — fair point. On to the point of the show: the cars. Adam and Kylie Perry’s wild ‘ Tailspin’ FB Holden, the back-to-front custom, won gold in all seven of the categories for which it was eligible: Bodywork, Paintwork, Engine and Components, Undercarriage and Driveline, Interior and Rear Compartment, Impact and Display, and Overall Innovation. The car earned a spot in the coveted Super Six and, with so many medals, also took out the Grand Master award. As I walked around the show, I heard Kylie Perry on the PA thanking Howard Astill for his input to their project — and I have to say that the car is just such an awesome street freak, part Nissan Skyline, part FB Holden, and a whole bunch in between.
The House of Kolor Inauguration this year saw a wide range of different projects that included ‘FAT XY’ — John Saad’s 673-cube, Sonny Leonard, Hemi-headed, Ford big block–powered 1971 XY Falcon sedan; ‘Money Pit’ — Rowan Moylan’s 1929 Ford Roadster; and ‘STU 347’ — Stuart Graham’s 1967 Ford Mustang coupe. Rob Zahabi’s unfinished Dodge Challenger rounded things out. The reduction in the number of entries was mainly due to various car club cars not being in attendance. This year, the entire show layout was turned on its head, with the standout entries being relocated from the Dome to the other end of the hall. All the vendors were housed in the Dome instead, which was a pity. The Dome is well lit with natural and artificial light — I guess it’s a bit like showing a painting in a well-lit position compared with a dark corner. Such is life. If you’re keen to check out MotorEx in person, next year’s event will be put on by OTP and will take place on May 26–27 in Melbourne. “MotorEx is not about to become Summernats,” Andy Lopez from OTP and Summernats, assured us. “It’s already a great event as it is. Rather, we’re looking to build on its core strengths, as well as to introduce a SEMA involvement in 2018.” Meguiar’s MotorEx Melbourne 2018 will be first C. 66 C. 10 M. 60 M. 10 event hosted under the new partnership,Y. 60 Y. 10 and is K. 45 K. 10 already shaping up to be the biggest and best MotorEx yet.