Over the last while, we’ve seen coverage of different RADwood events that have taken place all around the world. I’ve covered Sonoma, Trevor’s covered San Francisco, and even Jordan had a go during Goodwood in the UK.
But despite being a crazy rad era moving circus, the ethos of the show has shown no remorse or compromise, only growing larger with each lap around the globe. This time, we’re back in Los Angeles.
I find LA the perfect venue for such an era-centric show. It’s kind of hard to describe, as it’s one of those ‘you have to be there to understand’ things, but in essence, Los Angeles has always had a sort of rad-era-esque type vibe to it.
When you think about it, it makes sense, since this is where most trends started in the ’80s and ’90s thanks to Hollywood. MC Hammer-inspired parachute pants, wild neon-colored Spandex, and even the popularity of various rad era sports cars making their debuts in childhood favorites on the silver screen.
So I figured I’d make the trip down this time in hopes of catching some of those LA-inspired flashbacks.
Unfortunately, nature had other plans on deck for us. With overcast and precipitation following us down from the Bay Area, my hopes of a solid turnout were a bit crushed if I’m honest, because rain and LA typically don’t go well together. But come this past Saturday morning, and the show proved otherwise.
We started out the morning anticipating anything and everything from the rad era. As you’d expect, the majority of what turned up seemed to be of European or Japanese origin, but that’s not to say there weren’t a modest amount of domestics in attendance as well.
This begs the question that Trevor brought up in his RADwood NorCal coverage last year: Why was the American market so lackluster compared to the rest of the world during this period? The answer, as he explained, is complex and varies depending on who answers. But regardless, it’s quite a shame, because it would’ve been nice to see a bit more representation from Detroit at Oak Canyon Park.
Wishes aside, I did happen to come across a couple of cars that I immediately fell in love with.
This 300ZX Turbo couldn’t have been more perfect, boasting an aggressive yet functional stance. It seemed to be wearing its original two-tone paint and pin-striping as well, which just added to its already colorful character.
Speaking of colorful character, it wouldn’t be a proper RADwood show without a ’90s West LA-styled Suzuki Samurai on display. Again, one of my favorites from the show for simply being so appropriate, even down to the little man jamming out to the beats banging in the trunk in his era-appropriate attire.
Overall, the show was a success in my book even with the downturn in forecast, which just goes to prove how important creating such an inclusive segment in the automotive industry is. Only here will you find preserved econo-boxes parked next to multi million-dollar race cars. And only here will you see an enthusiastic group of people appreciating both sides of that spectrum, equally and lovingly, for what they are.
This all hones down to what the RADwood founders call ‘sense of occasion’, and it’s truly what differentiates RADwood from the rest of the shows we explore.
RADwood has easily become the must-attend show for me, so expect to see more coming up in the near future.