The fourth Concours of Elegance has taken place at the Palace of Holyroodhouse in Edinburgh. As the Queen's official residence in Scotland, Holyrood followed Windsor Castle, St James's Palace and Hampton Court Palace in hosting the prestigious classic car event, which ran from 4-6 September. Many of the participating cars took part in a two-day tour of the Highlands en route to Holyrood, with drivers including four-time IndyCar champion Dario Franchitti.
Hosted by HRH Prince Michael of Kent and Sir Jackie Stewart, the event's focus was the main concours in which 60 specially selected classics competed for the Pullman Trophy, which went to the car that accumulated most votes from other concours owners. The prize was awarded to a 1903 Mecedes Simplex 60HP - a car that in its day was claimed capable of 80mph thanks to its 9.2-litre four-cylinder engine.
Saturday's Club Trophy was contested by entrants from car clubs representing Bentley, Aston Martin, Rolls-Royce, Ferrari, Bristol, Jaguar, Maserati, AC Cars, Lamborghini and the RAC. The judging panel included Jaguar design director Ian Callum, who also helped choose the recipient of the Jaguar Trophy for the best entrant among 100 Jaguars attending. Both prizes went to the same car - a Jaguar SS1, a model that Callum described as "one of the most beautiful cars ever made". As the Club Trophy winner, the SS1 will be invited to join the main concours at the 2016 event.
On Sunday the Bentley Trophy was awarded to the best privately owned Bentley of the day - a Barnato Green Continental R. Bentley's own display included a Blower Bentley and Woolf Barnato's famous 'Blue Train' Speed Six.
Highlights of the main concours included the 1951 Ferrari 212 Export Vignale, fresh from a stint at the Ferrari museum in Maranello following a 14-month restoration. Powered by a 150bhp 2.5-litre V12, the car was delivered to its first owner by Enzo Ferrari himself as a coupé, before being restyled as a barchetta in 1953.
A 1958 Ferrari 250 Tour de France Scaglietti – designed by Pininfarina but finished with Scaglietti-supplied aluminium bodywork – was another show star from Maranello. Colloquially named for the Tour de France race that was dominated by 250 GTs in the late 1950s and early 1960s, the 250 TDF is powered by a 260bhp 3.0-litre V12.
The 250 GTO driven from Maranello to Goodwood's Easter Meeting in 1962 by Innes Ireland was also on show at Holyrood. Boasting 35bhp more than the TDF, the GTO racer also benefits from disc brakes, a five-speed gearbox, and much-improved aerodynamics.
Other Italian show stars included a Lancia Stratos Stradale – the road-going variant of the famous rally car – an ultra-rare 2500 GTS mid-engined V12 coupé from ATS, the short-lived sports car maker created by Ferrari defectors, and from Lamborghini, a 1970 Miura S owned by supercar dealer Tom Hartley Jnr and a dazzling white 5000S example of its successor, the Countach.
British entrants included the one-off Aston Martin DB4GT Bertone 'Jet' that won Best in Show at Villa d'Este in 2001 and was sold in 2013 for £3.25 million. An original, blue and white race-liveried Jaguar E-type Lightweight – on show for the first time in 20 years – was reprised by one of Jaguar's new recreation Lightweights on the JLR stand, and Aristotle Onassis's 1960 Bentley S2 Continental Fastback Mulliner Coupé also competed in the concours.
The 1902 American-built 2500cc twin-cylinder Westfield – good for 50mph – was the joint-oldest car on show. Other vintage entrants included the 9.3-litre Star Gordon Bennett Racer from 1905, the swooping Delahaye Type 165 Touring Cabriolet Figoni et Falaschi commissioned by the French government for the 1939 World's Fair in New York, and a gleaming 1908 Silver Ghost Barker Open Tourer, one of six Rolls-Royces in the field of 60.