If you thought the Netherlands was only about bicycles, tulips and funny cigarettes, you are totally wrong.
This year saw the 16th edition of 100% Auto Live. Located in Rotterdam, this auto show gathers different kinds of cars and styles; from flashy American lowriders to slammed Euro coupes and Japanese time attack-themed builds. There’s something to suit every taste.
This event has earned a very good reputation and now attracts not only people from the Netherlands, but from all over Europe. Some petrol-heads made the trip from Belgium, Germany and even from the UK.
Dale Masterman and Tom Clarke from Meguiar’s UK travelled all the way down from Britain to display their cars – a slammed W114 Mercedes-Benz and a wide-bodied Renault 5 GT Turbo. Tom’s yellow hatchback was recently featured on Speedhunters.
Also from Britain was this Nissan GT-R wearing a full dry carbon fiber body kit made by Overtake in Japan. The bumpers, fenders, hood, roof, trunk, spoiler, and doors – every single piece of metal and plastic has been sent to the crusher and replaced by carbon fiber, cutting 140kg (308lb) from the kerb weight in the process.
Because of a road tax called Belasting van Personenauto’s en Motorrijwielen, or BPM for short, owning a sports car in the Netherlands can be discouraging – especially if your dream car is a brand new one. Without diving into too much detail, this tax is based on the CO2 emissions of the vehicles and can make a sports car very expensive. As an example, a Nissan 370Z coupe retails for €110,000 (US$122,000), and a Nissan GT-R costs €170,000 (US$189,000). The Toyota GT86 sold for €57,000 (US$63,000), but in 2018 only three examples were sold in the Netherlands, so Toyota Nederlands decided to stop selling this model. In conclusion, you really have to be a die-hard car enthusiast to buy a new sports car from a dealer here!
It’s not uncommon to see exotic cars being customized with wide-body kits and air suspension these days, but this 2004 Lamborghini Gallardo has been modified in a way you might not expect. The suspension has been raised, fender flares have been riveted to the arches, wheels have been wrapped with off-road tires, there are rails and a light bar on the roof, and if by some misfortune you burst a tire by going crazy off-roading, you can easily grab the spare wheel that has been fitted on the motor hood. If you are interested in buying this bad boy, it’s currently for sale for a modest €115,000 (US$128,000).
Japanese cars from the ’90s are still very popular in the Netherlands. Also, it’s quite easy to import them directly from Japan and, by contrast to new cars, taxes are not that expensive on 20-plus-year-old vehicles. So it’s pretty common to see Supras, Skylines, RX-7s and Silvias at car shows here. Local companies like Skyline Garage and SW Performance specialise in importing cars directly from the Land of the Rising Sun.
This year’s event also featured some real screen cars from The Fast and the Furious and 2Fast2Furious. If you’ve ever wondered where some of the cars used in the well-known Fast & Furious franchise live nowadays, here’s the answer: they are in a private collection in the Netherlands.
My Canadian friend, Dominic Dubreuil, is so fond of the Fast & Furious movies that he’s built three exact replicas from the first movie: a black Civic coupe, Mitsubishi Eclipse, and a Volkswagen Jetta. He even teamed up with Chad Lindberg (Jesse) to build the last car, and you can follow his adventures on YouTube here.
Naturally, I reached out to Dominic to learn more about the cars displayed at 100% Auto Live.
The Toyota Supra was previously owned by Craig Lieberman, technical advisor for the two first movies. After the release of The Fast and the Furious in 2001, the car was sold to a European buyer, and it’s amazing to see it in such pristine condition after 18 years. If you look closely, you can see Paul Walker’s signature on the massive rear wing.
Next to the Supra was the infamous Volkswagen Jetta with no brake callipers. This particular car was the one that did burnouts during the Race Wars scenes, and it’s powered by a 2.0-liter engine mated to an automatic transmission.
The green Mitsubishi Eclipse on display was a back-up car used for certain scenes in the movie, including the sequence where Brian O’Conner (Paul Walker) lost control of the car in front of Dodger Stadium. At one time the Mitsubishi was owned by George Barris, the American designer and movie car builder, before being sold to a buyer in Europe in 2005.
The Mazda RX-7 is also a back-up car. This one was used during the scene when Dominic Toretto (Vin Diesel) escapes from the cops after the run with Paul Walker, Ja Rule and RJ de Vera. A fun fact about this car is that some caster wheels were mounted beneath the front bumper to prevent it from being scratched when it was driven into the parking lot. This car was also owned by George Barris at one point.
The Dodge Charger was used during the final run with the Supra. A hydraulic system was fitted underneath the car to make the wheelie possible, and it’s powered by a 318ci Mopar V8 engine. Last but not least, the pink Honda S2000 was used as a stunt car in 2Fast2Furious.
Visiting 100% Auto Live was a lot of fun, so I highly recommend people attending next year’s event. In the meantime, you can check out a lot more photos from the 2019 show below.
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