The next chapter: Caffeine & Classics, now with more classics

27 August, 2018



The monthly Caffeine & Classics meeting should suffice without an introduction, if you’re in the position to be reading this. It’s a pretty standard formula, and one that the team from Protecta Insurance kicked off over five years ago, becoming a pretty much self-governing event that happens like clockwork — the morning of the last Sunday of each month at Smales Farm Business Park in Auckland is Caffeine & Classics time. 

Of course, like everything that does well — or better than ever intended — the event grew into a bit of a monster, taking over the entire Smales Farm premises, and the relaxed ‘first in, best dressed’ entry began to cause organizers a few headaches. 

Diplomatically, they announced a few changes on social media, to bring the ‘classics’ back to Caffeine & Classics. Essentially, they decided to implement a blanket admission policy, with ‘classic’ cars defined as those at least 30 years old, or newer cars that fit the intention of the meeting — scratch-built, obscure, or exotic. It’s not a difficult concept to grasp, but a handful took the chance to fixate solely on the ‘30 years’ part, decrying the event and promising that it would wither away to nothing as a result of this unacceptable change. 

But it’s easy to be the voice of dissent on an open forum like Facebook. How would things actually go, in light of the drive to make the event a bit less of an automotive free-for-all? 
As it turned out on Sunday, 26 August, things were just fine. The grounds were full without overflowing, and spectators still showed up in droves, despite there being no on-site parking for the public. 

As for the cars? We’ll let this small selection of photos speak for themselves, but at the risk of falling into editorial cliché, there truly was something for everyone. We’ll see you there at the next one — something tells us the monthly Caffeine & Classics isn’t going anywhere. 

Travelling companion

It’s easy to see why the Morris Minor Traveller was one of the best-loved variants of the Morris Minor. Introduced in 1953, it was equipped with the same independent torsion bar front suspension, drum brakes, and rack and pinion steering as its saloon sibling but, with their foldable rear seat increasing versatility, many Travellers were used as trade vehicles, says Derek Goddard. Derek and Gail Goddard, the owners of this superbly restored example, have run Morris Minors since before they were married in 1974.
“Our honeymoon vehicle was a blue Morris Minor van — it was a rust bucket,” says Derek.

Super Leicht Gullwing

It’s fair to say that nothing much in the classic Mercedes world gets past Mercedes-Benz Club stalwart Garry Boyce so it wasn’t surprising to learn that around 15 years ago he had sniffed out an extremely rare 300SL lightweight Gullwing as well as a 1958 300SL Roadster hiding away in the Waikato. The cars were not for sale but Garry eventually managed to persuade the owner to allow him and his restoration team to take a look at the Roadster. They discovered a very distressed but largely unmolested car. The car was so original that the body had never been off the chassis, meaning most of the parts and fittings were still present and correct, as they had been fitted by the factory.