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Showtime: Melbourne’s stunning Royal Exhibition Building displayed 150 rare and historically important cars for the Motorclassica show with a further 200 outside in 2013, but this year will see more modern metal.

Motorclassica manufacturer attendance grows three-fold with six brands now signed up

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10 Sep 2014

By DANIEL GARDNER in MOTORCLASSICA

MELBOURNE'S main classic car event - Motorclassica is going from strength to strength with six major car-brands now confirmed to exhibit hardware at this year’s auto extravaganza.

Last year’s milestone exhibition saw official manufacturer attendance for the first time in the classic car show’s four-year history, with Jaguar and Mercedes-Benz rolling-out modern vehicles among the largely classic and vintage exhibition.

Jaguar’s freshly launched F-Type sportscar was on display, but Mercedes went one step further, choosing the venue for the official Australian unveiling of its luxury flagship S-Class.

Both brands have confirmed their return for the 2014 show with Mercedes promising “something special”, however, this year the two brands will jostle for attention alongside Maserati, Alfa Romeo, Aston Martin and Lotus.

Since the demise of the Australian International Motor Show (AIMS) the major manufacturers have looked for alternative platforms with which to exhibit their models and, with a rich heritage, Mercedes and Jaguar consider Motorclassica to be an appropriate stage for their brands.

The relative newcomers have a similarly long history of racing and luxury vehicles, examples of which will also be on show at the same event alongside the modern and current models.

Some of the exhibitors have revealed which models they will be showing off (browse our gallery for a taste), but as Mercedes demonstrated at the 2013 event, surprises are not out of the question.

With more than a month to go before the gates open, more brands could announce their presence at the show, and Motorclassica’s organisers plan to double the number of manufacturers attending by next year.

Public attendance is also on the increase with last year’s ticket-sales up 40 per cent compared to 2012 – an encouraging sign given the failure of AIMS was partly attributed to declining popularity from paying punters.

Motorclassica event director Paul Mathers said that the show offers a more personal and hands-on experience for both car buyers and enthusiasts alike.

“They'll be able to sit in the cars and engage with manufacturer representatives who understand the vehicles and importantly the brand back story,” he said.

“Having Jaguar and Mercedes-Benz back is a vote of confidence in our show, and both are planning special activities which will attract a lot of interest.” Two new motor shows have been announced this year with The Australian Motoring Festival and MotorWorld due to open in 2014 and 2015 respectively, but both have Motorclassica's gathering momentum to contend with.

The 2014 Motorclassica is on from October 24-26 at the Royal Exhibition Building in Melbourne.

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