November 22, 2017

Car Spotter / Blogger / Reviewer

Whilst in Australia over the summer, specifically in Melbourne, Victoria, I was invited to Shifting Gear: Design, Innovation and the Australian Car exhibition. The car exhibition displayed the history of Australia’s automobile design and engineering, showcasing some of the most iconic vehicles as objects of art and design.

 

The exhibition focused on the development of the motor vehicle, from the steam powered, ‘horseless carriage’ and the very first ute (utility vehicle) right through to the Australian muscle cars and modern day race cars.

 

The exhibit was extremely formative and provided a great insight into the history of Australian motoring, with the main focal point of the exhibit being the 23 vehicles on display.

 

The exhibit roughly followed the chronological order of Australia’s car history, each exhibit had vast amounts of information, often with sketches and information about the designers and creators of the vehicle plus race honours where applicable.

 

Prior to the Shifting Gear exhibition at the National Gallery of Victoria, my knowledge and understanding of Australian cars was limited. I was well aware of Australia’s love for the ute (utility vehicle) which is a coupe utility to anybody who is unfamiliar with the term. The term ute encompasses all vehicles with a cargo tray in the rear. They are popular with the younger generation and high performance variants are commonplace, sporting huge 5 and 6 litre V8 engines.

 

Some extremely quirky and rare concept cars amongst the line-up of vehicles, that I felt very fortunate to witness all under one roof. Please look through the pictures that I took at the exhibit and enjoy. I have tried to provide name captions to each of the vehicles where possible.

IMG_4517 IMG_4518 IMG_4519 IMG_4520

Maybach Special Mk1

Maybach Special Mk1

1955 Ausca Sports Racer

1955 Ausca Sports Racer

I loved the hinged roof on the 1976 Purvis Eureka F4.

 

1976 Purvis Eureka F4

1976 Purvis Eureka F4

1976 Purvis Eureka F4

1976 Purvis Eureka F4

Front: 1961 Elfin Streamliner Back: 1950s Molina Monza Special

Front: 1961 Elfin Streamliner
Back: 1950s Molina Monza Special

Front: 1939 Austin Ace 7 Back: 1928 Chamberlain Special

Front: 1939 Austin Ace 7
Back: 1928 Chamberlain Special

IMG_4533

1971-1974 GM Holden HQ Holden Monaro GTS Coupe

1971-1974 GM Holden HQ Holden Monaro GTS Coupe

1973 Ford Australia XA Ford Falcon GT (RPO83) coupe

1973 Ford Australia XA Ford Falcon GT (RPO83) coupe

1973 Ford Australia XA Ford Falcon GT (RPO83) coupe

1973 Ford Australia XA Ford Falcon GT (RPO83) coupe

1971-1973 Chrysler VH Valiant Charger R/T E49 Coupe

1971-1973 Chrysler VH Valiant Charger R/T E49 Coupe

1971-1973 Chrysler VH Valiant Charger R/T E49 Coupe

1971-1973 Chrysler VH Valiant Charger R/T E49 Coupe

Finished in orange paint with metallic gold flakes and a completely removable roof and windscreen section, the 1969 GM Holden Hurricane was one of the stand out, unique vehicles for myself. Unfortunately it is just a concept car.

 

1969 GM Holden Hurricane coupe concept

1969 GM Holden Hurricane coupe concept

1969 GM Holden Hurricane coupe concept

1969 GM Holden Hurricane coupe concept

1970 GM Holden GTR-X Torano Coupe concept

1970 GM Holden GTR-X Torano Coupe concept

Australia’s first ever ute was here on display. It has not been restored or recreated, just left how it was found from when it was discovered in a barn. The first ever ute was created by a woman, who wanted a car that she could use go to Church on a Sunday and then take pigs to market on a Monday. It certainly is a fascinating piece of history, a far cry from the modified and tuned utes of today being the original descendant.

 

1933 Ford Coupe Utility 302

1933 Ford Coupe Utility 302

1933 Ford Coupe Utility 302

1933 Ford Coupe Utility 302

1933 Ford Coupe Utility 302

1933 Ford Coupe Utility 302

1933 Ford Coupe Utility 302

1933 Ford Coupe Utility 302

1938 GM Holden Pontiac all-enclosed coupe (silver streak)

1938 GM Holden Pontiac all-enclosed coupe (silver streak)

1938 GM Holden Pontiac all-enclosed coupe (silver streak)

1938 GM Holden Pontiac all-enclosed coupe (silver streak)

1949 Hartnett Tasman Sedan prototype

1949 Hartnett Tasman Sedan prototype

IMG_4561 IMG_4562

1898 Steam Car 4 wheel Phaeton by Herbert Thomson

1898 Steam Car 4 wheel Phaeton by Herbert Thomson

1898 Steam Car 4 wheel Phaeton by Herbert Thomson

1898 Steam Car 4 wheel Phaeton by Herbert Thomson

IMG_4566

I hope you enjoyed the pictures and my thoughts on the Shifting Gear exhibition.

 

What do you think of the Shifting Gear Exhibition? Do you have a favourite car from the event?

 

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