Editor's Note: We at Driving Line love Cars and Coffee. It's a great example of the passion that drives us as enthusiasts. So when the community is a buzz about changes in the air, we care what's going on. Driving Line contributor, Albert Roxas, is long-term attendee of C&C and we think his two cents on the issue pull a little weight. Everyone is entitled to their opinions. Here are Albert's...
The above image is what Cars & Coffee is really about…
It started with a comment a friend made to me:
“This place is starting to look like the Orange County Swap Meet…”
The only issue was, we weren’t at the Swap Meet, we were at world renowned Cars & Coffee in Irvine – where most (if not all) of my early Saturday AM’s are spent. As we walked down “Mustang Row”, I snickered a bit then realized – damn, he’s serious. The “quality” of cars has changed, while the quantity has grown.
Having gone to Cars & Coffee every Saturday AM since its inception (I live less than 5 miles from it), I can honestly say I’ve seen it all. From Veyron’s to Enzo’s, from Isetta’s to an early Mercedes Carriage car – there’s always SOMETHING interesting to see amongst the rows and rows of cars that await us. I’ve seen first releases of new model cars as well as one-off concept cars. I can honestly say there’s usually something for everybody – enthusiast or not. As the event has gotten larger and word of mouth has spread, more and more enthusiasts have opted to “show” their car in the lot…sometimes for better or worse depending upon your opinion.
What do you think is more interesting to look at… a BAC MONO…
…All white everything: Countach, Diablo, M1 and 512BB…
…RatRod w/BMW Motor…
…OR a boatload of mainly stock BMW ///M5’s?
This is an example of what has sparked the controversy. In February of this year, a list of guidelines was sent out from the organizers of Cars & Coffee:
Some have called them “Rules” or a way of filtering out “unwanted” cars due to limited space – a result of multitudes of the same brand/model of car showing up in “crews”. People have complained on forums, blogs and Facebook – and it’s even a topic of discussion amongst groups during the show. The focus on the controversy is based upon opinion (go figure) – what is it that Cars & Coffee is really about? Is it exotics? Unique Cars? Hot Rods? What do people want to see when they come to Cars & Coffee?
This isn’t about the “marquee” specialty that pops up every so often, this is about the same group of enthusiasts with the same make/models of cars that come every week and park in the inside lot, most notably:
Mustangs, Corvettes, GTR’s and F10 M5’s coming in groups of 5 or more – “regular” cars or daily driven cars that may be special to you, but not to those that wake early on a Saturday morning to checkout cars. Let’s be honest, if someone wanted to see your bone stock M5, they could go to the local Ralph’s in Irvine and find at least 2 at any given time. I’m not trying to offend anyone; I’m just being honest and realistic as an enthusiast myself. Cars & Coffee is about cars you don’t see everyday – old or new, exotic or not. Cars that will make you turn your head and want to take a closer look.
Who’s to say these groups aren’t welcome to the Cars & Coffee gathering? Well, honestly…the founders have all the say (volunteers by the way). They are the ones who come religiously each Saturday AM and give their time to provide us with an incredible and free show. They have the right to say “Only red cars today” and we, as guests (after all that’s who we really are), should abide by these guidelines.
If you have something to say about the new rules (which means you attend Cars & Coffee) – before you complain, suggest, or agree – consider volunteering some of your time to an event you have enjoyed…or you can always spend your Saturday at the Orange County Swap meet.