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The Revs Institute: Wide-Eyed Wonderment

Words fail to describe what is going on here in South Florida. It’s simply overwhelming. The Collier Collection might not be the biggest in the world (it’s big!), but it certainly is the most thoughtful. What the Collier’s have done here in Naples is nothing short of a miracle. The meticulously maintained building is a state of the art purpose-built facility. It is a hurricane-proof architectural masterpiece. Every car in the collection is significant and meaningful in its own right. Each vehicle is either completely original or has been meticulously and painstakingly restored to a condition that is precise to its date of manufacture. The walls are adorned with beautifully reproduced period photographs. Each motor car has a detailed description. Miles and Parker Collier have a deep respect for history, research, authenticity, and fellowship and their collection and event is a reflection of these core values.

Lectures and interactive sessions today ranged from estate planning for collections to the rise of modern collectibles. Sessions were hosted by industry luminaries Keith Martin, Donald Osborne, and David Swig. There is a very talented artist named Sara that sketches each lecture in real time on a huge tapestry-like canvas. This unique process is called “graphic recording.” The discussion content has sparked serious thoughts and (at times) spirited and charged conversations. When is a car too valuable to use? Are replicas acceptable? Do you use a car or save it? How important is originality? What is the future of the preservation class? Am I getting a good deal on a car and am I making a friend in the process? Buying a car is a personal decision. How much should we rely on key experts vs making our own decision? Advice can often be a double-edged sword. These and many other questions were asked. None of them have hard and fast answers, but each lecture module provoked serious thoughts.

One session talked about the seven engagement factors for collectors: Nostalgia, aesthetics, mastery, technical, history, competition, and fellowship. Participants were polled on these seven points and data was collected and sorted. After lunch, we reviewed the statistical output to contemplate the median, mode, standard deviation, and average of these data. The goal was to gain a further understanding of our collecting habits, preferences, and beliefs. It was a fascinating exercise, and the data output demonstrated how alike—and different—we all are. Each day at Rev begins with a statistical audience polling and is followed by rigorous analysis at the end of the day.

Revs is about education, camaraderie, and fellowship. The collectible motor car has brought us all together to one extraordinary place for a fully packed four-day schedule of events. The attendees represent the gold standard of influential collectors and key players in the sport. Many people here are global business luminaries. Pulitzer Prize-winning journalists dine beside world-renown automotive restoration experts. Over the last twenty-four hours, I have met and befriended so many extraordinary people. We are brought together by a shared passion for the automobile, and everyone is interested in learning about each others niche interest.

A mascot collection like no other!

A real-time artist rendering of each lecture module.

The Porsche factory wishes it owned these rare race cars.

The most comprehensive Porsche race car collection in the world.

Donald Osborne opines on the similarities of the Model T and the Rolls Ghost.

Meals are prepared by a brilliant chef (note the auto-inspired silverware)

The lowest mileage original Trabant in the world! An East German cardboard wonder!

The amazing GTS

The most simple and elegant door handle in the world is attached to the rare all-wheel-drive twin-engine Sahara edition Citroën 2CV.

Original Packard Twin-Six upholstery.

The ultimate Mercedes

Some cars were taken out for a spin. Here is a Bugatti:

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4 Responses to The Revs Institute: Wide-Eyed Wonderment

  1. Dean Laumbach March 8, 2017 at 12:06 pm #

    Great coverage !!! What a spectacular event and an amazing collection. Such attention to detail, right down to the silverware.

  2. Don Lawrence March 8, 2017 at 11:45 am #

    What a fantastic synopsis of a GREAT event ! See you all next year !!!

    • Philip Richter March 27, 2017 at 8:48 am #

      It was fabulous! Revs is held every two years so like the old Heinz ketchup commericials said we are all going to have to wait! The anticipaton is overwhelming!

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  1. The Dog That Didn’t Bark | Turtle Garage - May 20, 2017

    […] this year I posted a four-part series on the Revs Institute Symposium on Connoisseurship and the Collectible Car. A truncated version of this post was recently published in the June issue of Sports Car Market. […]