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2003 Meadow Brook Concours d'Elegance
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Click here to open the slideshowThe skies were threatening rain but the circular arrangement of 34 Duesenbergs radiated like sunbeams outward over the Meadow Brook Hall grounds.

On Sunday August 10th, Meadow Brook celebrated their 25th Annual Concours d’Elegance on the Oakland University property. To commemorate their Silver Anniversary, Meadow Brook was hoping to show 25 Duesenbergs, but remarkably that wasn’t enough for many ‘Duesey’ owners as 34 officially registered for the show.

Fred and Augie Duesenberg’s story began in 1913, in Indianapolis, Indiana, as engine builders for racing cars, boats, and aircraft. Their engines appeared in many race winning cars including the “183 Grand Prix” which won both the French Grand Prix and Indianapolis 500 races.

E.L. Cord entered the Duesenberg brothers’ lives in 1926 and assisted them in producing the first Model J in 1929. In the following years Duesenbergs were highly regarded for their spectacular styling and powerful engines. No two Duesenbergs are alike since all all chassis were delivered to specialized coach builders, who fitted custom bodyworks.

This year’s concours displayed the largest gathering of 'Dueseys' to date, with a feature of the six most expensive examples in the world in attendance. All Duesenbergs present received a one-time only “Duesenberg Cup” award acknowledging the owners and collectors who restored and shared their cars.

There were nearly 280 vintage cars competing for the 42 available awards. Notable entries included the 1936 Auburn 852 Supercharged 8 Speedster which won the People’s Choice Award. The 1936 Voisin C28 Aerosport Aero Coupe showed well, winning both the Meadow Brook Memorial and Most Original Car Awards.

Spirit of the Automobilist Award went to the well-deserving 1955 Maserati A6G 2000 Zagato Two-Door Coupe. The 1954 Hudson 2 Door Italia won Best Sports Car through 1955, while the Best Sports Car 1956 and later class was won by the 1957 Mercedes-Benz 300SL Roadster.

While the Duesenbergs attracted most of the public’s attention, the judges couldn’t stop praising the 1937 Mercedes-Benz 450K Cabriolet owned by the Patterson Collection of Louisville, Kentucky. This deep blue Mercedes wore three ribbons by days end, given the Dave Holls Memorial Designers Choice Award, Most-Significant Mercedes-Benz Award, and finally the Founders Trophy – Best of Show Award.

The Meadow Brook Concours also hosted a record-breaking $6.1 million classic car auction hosted by RM Auctions on Saturday with a 1935 Duesenberg Model J Convertible Coupe receiving a top bid of $825,000 USD.

To give you a perfect impression of the Meadow Brook Concours d'Elegance we have compiled a 70 shot slideshow with high resolution images of the finest cars entered!

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We would like to thank the organizers of the event and the owners of the cars for their assistance. For more information on this year's and coming events please visit the event's website at www.mbhconcours.org. Report and images by Rob Clements.