A small delegation of CCWA Inc. members attended the 2018 Adelaide Chrysler Festival over the weekend and have provided us with a tall tale and lots of photos. I will leave the tale to be told in an unedited format. ENJOY ! “Four of us took a 5.30am flight from Perth which hurt but was worth it to get to Adelaide in time to hit the Birdwood Motor Museum, we also met up with a mate who flew in from Melbourne at the same time.
The museum was awesome with a huge mix of cars, a Bugatti Veyron and FJ45 'Cruiser greet you through the door, plus the last unfinished Commodore shells from the plant closure a few months ago. Out the back a bunch of Chryslers were parked up on the grass and soon the Wimmera Chrysler convoy rocked up including a couple of good mates who would ferry us around all weekend in the Phoenix and the 340 Pacer. After some more beers we were treated to a private viewing of the museum's latest addition, a one-off 1928 Chamberlain 8 Aussie race car that they had just acquired:
Late in the afternoon it was time for the long drive back to the Tonsley Hotel, a couple of us jumped in the VF Pacer and were treated to very tight and twisty roads. Awesome fun!
A huge night in the Chrysler Bar followed, including a session with Gavin Farmer and ex-Chrysler employees recounting stories how the factory went about things.
The party continued in the hotel rooms with some late night pizza thrown in and some sore heads the next morning. The Tonsley Hotel Big Breakfast is quite the hangover cure.
While some of the crew went off on the factory tours, a few of us went to visit the Outlaw Speed Shop, well known for catering to Mopars and stocking lots of cool performance stuff. They also happened to be holding a mini car show out the front!
The quality of cars was OUTSTANDING, so many super tough cars and perfect factory stockers, plus US muscle and a rough survivor CH Hardtop recently found in Ayers Rock.
The cruise circled around the Adelaide CBD, we had a couple of issues navigating but there was always another Valiant to follow, even if they were going the wrong way too...
The finish point was absolutely chockers with people and Mopars and they just kept on rolling in:
After some quality hamburgers it was time for a bit of fun racing on the way back to the Tonsley Hotel for another giant night on the piss. Thanks to all the bar staff for putting up with our antics.
Sunday it was time for the big one. After a rather slow start we headed down, hard to describe how awesome it was being in the factory with so many amazing Chryslers. I guess the pics can do the talking. We had wandered through there in prior years but more areas were open this time including the panel press area where the swap meet was setup. We were all “nerding” out on the nostalgia and history of the place including an awesome booklet published by the club that had a ton of interesting facts and maps of all the areas
I did miss a fair few cars in these pics, was just so many on display.
Went to the “meet and greet” at the Tonsley Pub and then the talk by ex-employees of CAL. Saturday some of us went on the historical tour with Gavin Farmer around Adelaide of all the TJ Richards and CAL/MMAL factories. Many are still there as industrial ghosts.
Saturday night was the cruise were we all piled in the VF and Phoenix to get to the start point and then a few of us getting lifts in a few other locals cars. Cruise was about an hour and finish up we had a feed and wander around to look at some cars and then back to the Tonsley Pub for some discussion and bench racing. Old Ron who is 85 was chatting up the barmaid and did a great job of keeping up with us all.
Sunday was the show that’s walking distance from the pub down to Tonsley Park. I spoke to Iain and he said they had well over 300 cars under the roof and a bunch outside dotted around in car parks. Was the perfect place for a car show. It was all under one roof, there was plenty of food and drink shops built in already. Sadly it’s a one off as the back half is getting demolished soon I’m told. The fact it was in the factory were most of these cars were built just sealed the deal.
We guys from the West gave out an award for the car we would most like to drive home across the Nullarbor. Was a VH 318 770 with A/C in Deep Chartreuse. Turned out the car had a great story and the guy who won it was over the moon. Has 69,000 miles on it. We gave him a bottle of red wine and a few Charger Club of W.A stickers. Said he had never won anything in his life and it was his deceased grandfather's car. His grandfather had been killed while serving in the army (I think - was that right Bruce?) 30 years prior and his grandmother had kept it locked away in a tiny garage, even the family didn't know it was there. When she passed away they were clearing out her house and had to break the lock on the shed to then find the VH. The bloke had only put new tyres on it and got it running again after oiling the bores and a service
By Sunday “arvo” it was time to make a move, back to the Tonsley Hotel for the last couple of beers of the trip.
The Chrysler car club of South Australia have to have a “pat” of the back for one of the best Chrysler shows/car shows full stop I have ever been to. Was a mountain of work to get a deal with the state government to get the cars in there for the day. Once they got the go ahead from them it went pretty painless. They had no judging or entry cost to keep it as simple as possible so the club has taken a hit to make this once in a lifetime event happen on their bottom line.”
Pictures can be viewed at Facebook here.