Next to Pebble Beach, the Amelia Island Concours d'Elegance, held each year in March at The Ritz-Carlton Amelia Island in Florida, is the country's most prestigious concours. Some actually prefer it to Pebble because of its more gentlemanly pace and more manageable proportions.
It lacks nothing whatsoever when it comes to cool cars, however, as we discovered on our inaugural excursion as a guest of major Amelia sponsor Mercedes-Benz. The iconic German marque also helped honor American racing legend Al Unser, who won the Indy 500 four times, among other accomplishments, at the event.
Besides a host of beauteous Benzes like the green 190SL above, we encountered a killer collection from Brumos Porsche's racing stable, a massive display of Jaguar D-Types and a number of cars associated with the King of Cool himself, Steve McQueen.
Here are the highlights:
Steve McQueen's beloved 1957 Jaguar XKSS, aka the "Green Rat"
Another view of McQueen's XKSS, on loan from the Petersen Museum
The 1964 Aston Martin DB5 driven by Sean Connery as James Bond in Goldfinger
A drop-dead 1960 Ferrari 250GT SWB competition car with racing stripes
Another view of the 250GT Berlinetta, our favorite car on the field
An early competition 911 from the Brumos Porsche collection
Another knockout early 911 with an important racing pedigree
A more modern and much faster 911 specimen from the Brumos stable
Perhaps the most stunning car ever built, a Mercedes-Benz 300 SL Gullwing
Interior detail of the gorgeous prizewinning Gullwing
There were 11 Jaguar D-Types on display including a number of Le Mans winners
Another view of the ridiculously beautiful D-Types on display
Alfa Romeo grille detail from the golden days of motoring
Sinuous curves on an eye-popping 1957 Maserati 200si competition car
An original Porsche 718 which gave its name to the current 718 Boxster
The most dapper chap in attendance with his stunning 1965 Rolls-Royce Silver Cloud III
A really famous Rolls, the 1967 Silver Shadow driven by Steve McQueen in The Thomas Crown Affair
1980 Martini Racing Lancia Beta Monte Carlo goodness
A 1953 Ferrari 166 MM which helped establish the legendary Italian marque's reputation
A classically well-tailored Ferrari GT interior
Bespoke Bentley coachwork on an early example convertible
On the wrist, a super cool Rolex Daytona 6263 "Big Red" from Bob's Watches
There are few things more beautiful than pre-war Bugattis
Last but not least, the priceless 1969 Porsche 917 from Steve McQueen's iconic flick Le Mans