CC Car Show: Italian Day at Portland Cars & Coffee

It had been a few months since I’d been to a Cars and Coffee event, so when I noticed the next week’s theme was going to be Italian Day, I decided to take the trip to Wilsonville to see some beautiful cars. Of course, there were some of the most expensive, fastest, and gorgeous exotic cars in attendance, but those cars don’t really draw the biggest crowds. While it’s always fun to see something so rare and expensive, they really don’t push my buttons the way some of the other cars do. I have been to this event before, and I knew I was in for some cars you don’t see very often. 

I brought my camera, and I’ll let my photos mostly speak for themselves, since I’m no expert in Italian automobiles. I do have a pretty good sense of what is cool though, and I certainly saw a good number of cool cars that morning, both Italian and from everywhere else. 

Let’s begin with something that stands out even in a crowd of Italian exotics. This Ferrari FF, that has been wrapped in a rose/copper wrap is the opposite of subtle. Probably not a good car to evade the police with, but I’m sure it’s very fast. 

This is a 1982 Alfa Romeo GTV6. It’s a very nice car, but its neighbor was a bit more exotic.

I’m not sure of the year, but this is a Ferrari Berlinetta Boxer. This was their first mid-engine flat 12 production car, and it wasn’t officially imported to the USA according to the information I could find. I’m sure there are many of you that can tell us more about this automobile, but anyone can enjoy its beautiful design. 

Alfa Romeo GTV.

What would Italian Day be without a rare Lamborghini? This is a Diablo Roadster with a retractable roof. I spoke with owner, and he told me there were only around 100 made and very few of them were in this blue color. Yeah, I was impressed. 

At some point though, the unobtainable hardware becomes kind of ho-hum. Oh, look another Ferrari supercar. Luckily there was much more here than play toys for the uber-rich. 

Not every car at the event was a high dollar exotic. This little Fiat 500 is a pure economy car, but with that undeniable Italian flair. 

You obviously don’t have to be a millionaire to enjoy an Italian sports car as these Fiats and an Alfa Romeo Spider demonstrate. These can be affordable classics, especially if you can do some of the maintenance yourself. 

Don’t be ashamed if you don’t know what this one is, they aren’t very common. This is a mid-engine OTAS. The engine is from Fiat. It’s a pretty good bet that if you own one, none of your neighbors or friends do. It got as much attention as any of the high dollar exotics, at what I would assume is a fraction of the cost.

I attended my first Cars and Coffee event a few years ago. Recently, I discovered one of the great things to do at an event is watch the cars parade into the parking lot. You get to see the cars in action, actually hear them, and see what the owner looks like. Enjoy a traffic jam of interesting cars. Not a Camry or crossover to be found.

The car above is a Fiat Dino. This is no economy car. I was familiar with the Ferrari Dino, and I had heard of the Fiat by the same name, but didn’t know the details. Apparently, this is a Fiat coupe with the V-6 engine from the Ferrari Dino mounted in the front of the car, driving the rear wheels. In a sea of unusual cars, I barely noticed this extremely rare gem. 

Of course, this was a “Cars & Coffee” so there were plenty of non-Italian cars here, and there was quite a variety of vehicles to watch as they entered the lot. 

I didn’t know these existed. This is a Pontiac Firebird with an OHC 6 cylinder engine. I never knew.  (Note from Ed.: Timely that JP Cavanaugh reviewed one yesterday!)

There were a number of very nice Mustangs at the event, and amazingly, none of them drove into the crowd while performing out of control burnouts. 

I can’t believe I didn’t get a shot of the OHC 6, even though the hood was open. I sincerely apologize.

Here are a few more photos for you Porsche fans out there. 

Oregon is having a very pleasant summer this year while much of the rest of the country is roasting. The weather this day was perfect for riding, so there were plenty of Italian motorcycles at the “Italian Day” event. It would also appear Ducati is doing a pretty brisk business these days. One more thing, do they still call this bench racing? 

I hope you enjoyed my photos. If you live anywhere near a cars and coffee event, you should visit it. I can’t imagine how you could have a bad time at one. Do yourself a favor and go out and look at cool old cars once in a while. It always brings a smile to my face, and it will probably do the same to you.