Monday, October 7, 2013

Brussels' Autoworld Museum

One large European automobile museum that's not far off the beaten path (as many are) is Autoworld in Brussels, Belgium.  Its Web site is here.  It is located in the Parc du Cinquantenaire (Jubelpark) that's a longish walk or a fairly short subway ride from the Gare Centrale (Centraal Station).

It has plenty of cars, the Web site claiming more than 250.  I found some interesting ones, but few showstoppers.  That is, a few Belgian Minervas were on view as were some Hispano-Suizas, but no Duesenbergs, Bugatti Royals and their ilk.

I had my trusty camera on hand and took plenty of photos that I might include in future posts.  For now, I'll just set the scene.

This is what a visitor sees shortly after entering. Most of the cars are clustered on the main floor, but there's also a mezzanine with more cars and some motorcycles.

Looking down on the main floor from the opposite end of the hall.

Another view, this from a stairway.  Below is a display featuring Panhards form France.  Let's take a closer look at the one at the left.

It is a 1937 Panhard et Lavassor Dynamic, featuring an early form of wraparound windshield plus a centrally-mounted steering wheel. I encountered one in Florida a while ago and included a photo in this post over at the Art Contrarian blog.  Note that the Panhard is not resting on its tires.  Instead, it sits on supports, two of which are visible below the bumper.  Cars in the museum are supported this way, eliminating the need to keep tires fully inflated.  But it does give the cars an odd stance with the tires and wheels not quite relating to fenders and wheel well openings as they would when seen on the street.  Also note that this Panhard has not been restored to factory-fresh condition.  Many of the cars on view are in a similar state.

Also on view is this 1937 Cord 812.  It is in good condition, but the metallic gray paint job is almost certainly not original.  Looks nice, however.

No comments: