Top 5 Showstopper Cars at 2012 Pebble Beach Concours d'Elegance

Every year since 1950, the Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance has been considered one of the most revered car shows in the world. Car manufactures from all around the world show off concepts and new models alongside historical greats (see amazing past winners here). Sometimes the cars that are shown off are concepts that will never be produced or priceless one-off working production cars. This year's show is no exception with several future design concepts, some high performance American muscle, and a couple of forgotten gems of ill-timed decadence. Check out the Top 5 from this year's Pebble Beach event.

5) SRT Viper GTS Launch Edition

Top 5 Showstopper Cars at 2012 Pebble Beach Concours d'Elegance
SRT is launching this Special Edition Viper GTS which was styled to commemorate the past Viper launches of ’96 and ’06. Not much is known about the new Viper regarding production numbers, but what is confirmed is the Noah’s ark size 8.4-liter V10 and the earth shattering 631 horsepower and 600 lb-ft of torque it produces. Stretching over the massive engine and body is bright blue paint underneath iconic double racing stripes. If your going to do a count down of inductees to the Pebble Beach Pantheon, this isn’t a bad way to start.

4) BMW Zagato Z4 Roadster

Top 5 Showstopper Cars at 2012 Pebble Beach Concours d'Elegance
Zagato are no strangers to taking great cars and making them better (Aston Martin V12 zagato). They’re also no stranger to the BMW Z4, which they got their hands on back in May. However, it has been too long and they needed to get their fix. Enter the BMW Zagato Z4 Roadster. The coupe was beautiful, but as with most beautiful things, topless is better. The one-off roadster’s aluminium body panels are actually hand crafted, further differentiating it from the coupe. The Zagato ‘Z’ appears all over this car as if Zorro ran out of walls to sign. Powering it is rumoured to be the same twi- turbo six as the coupe. Hey, if it ain’t broke don’t fix it.

3) McLaren X-1

Top 5 Showstopper Cars at 2012 Pebble Beach Concours d'Elegance
A one-of-a-kind production car based on the current MP4-12C. The brain child of an anonymous McLaren enthusiast (who also owns a McLaren F1, SLR, and MP4-12C) and nursed by Ron Dennis himself, this car couldn’t fit in at PB any more if it tried. Even though it’s a 200-mph supercar, underneath it looks like it is trying to blend in with the best of them from the 1940s. Design inspiration even came from the Guggenheim and as far “outside the box” as an eggplant. The carbon-fiber tub and engine are about the only similarities. McLaren Special Operations really out did themselves with this one.

2) 1934 Cadillac V-16 Roadster & 1937 V-16 Phaeton

Top 5 Showstopper Cars at 2012 Pebble Beach Concours d'Elegance
Top 5 Showstopper Cars at 2012 Pebble Beach Concours d'Elegance
The number 2 spot on the list coincidently belongs to two cars, two cars that never existed except on paper. These two cars’ conception was poorly timed with that little happening called the Great Depression. Even though the period was a time of great despair and well… depression, those who had money flaunted it and did it in big ways. These Cadillacs were apparently too grand for the one-percenters of the time, so they only ever lived as drawings in the catalogue and never made it to reality. That is, until some saw it as an insult to art everywhere and built the 1937 Phaeton 5859 and 5802 Rumble Seat Roadster with period accurate parts. Both are also propelled by period accurate and un-depression-like V-16s  You don't see decadence like this very often, and these are a sight to behold.

1) 850-hp 2013 Ford Shelby GT500 Cobra Mustang

Top 5 Showstopper Cars at 2012 Pebble Beach Concours d'Elegance
Earlier this year the car enthusiast world lost a great man, Carroll Shelby. Ford and Shelby American wanted to pay tribute to the icon in a way they only knew how; make a one-off  850-horsepower Mustang GT500 with a 4.0-liter Ford racing supercharger on top of it and 13-inch wide rear tires underneath it. Because for a man who, even at 88 years old, spent hours driving and testing the most powerful production Mustangs around Sebring,only something like this would make him happy.

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