Delage's Vintage Masterpiece: Triumph at The Peninsula Classics 2022 Awards.
Internationally recognized luxury beacon, The Peninsula, which has championed elegance for nearly 100 years, recently crowned the 1938 Delage Type D8-120 S Cabriolet by De Villars as its most prestigious recipient of The Peninsula Classics 2022 Best of the Best Award. This accolade celebrates the epitome of automotive mastery, selecting from a crème de la crème assembly of classic cars previously honored at the year's foremost concours events. The Delage's recent Best of Show triumph at the 2022 Concours of Elegance at Hampton Court Palace solidified its candidacy.
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Mr. Fritz Burkard, proud owner of the celebrated Delage, expressed, “Being recognized with such an esteemed accolade is profoundly humbling. Showcasing this car at concours globally has been a delightful journey, and this award is the pinnacle.”
Emanating from the iconic Delage stable and draped by De Villars, the Delage D8 is an unparalleled twin-seater. Boasting an athletic silhouette, riveting fenders, and exceptional detailing, this vehicle was a star attraction at the 1938 Concours de l’Auto de Printemps, where it clinched the Grand Prize, overshadowing other prominent contemporaries.
In the running for the Peninsula's accolade were several automotive gems: a 1932 Duesenberg Model J Sports Torpedo, a 1937 Bugatti 57S Cabriolet, and the 1966 Ferrari 365 P Berlinetta, among others—each a testament to the industry's outstanding craftsmanship in 2022.
Reflecting on the competition, The Hon. Sir Michael Kadoorie, Chairman of The Hongkong and Shanghai Hotels and The Peninsula Classics Best of the Best Award co-founder, remarked, “Selecting a single standout from such a stellar line-up grows increasingly daunting each year. Yet, the 1938 Delage D8-120 S Cabriolet's magnificence is undeniable.”
The verdict was delivered by an illustrious panel of 25 experts, including automotive design visionaries like Fabio Filippini, legendary musician Nick Mason, fashion mogul Ralph Lauren, and TV personality Jay Leno.
Founded in 1905 by Louis Delage, the Delage brand is synonymous with the golden age of French automotive artistry, winning accolades worldwide. De Villars, initiated by American millionaire Frank Jay Gould in 1925, carved its niche by tailoring luxury cars for the American elite in France, although its operations ceased post-World War II.
The D8's journey to stardom traces back to Otto Zipper, a pioneering foreign car dealer in Beverly Hills, who encountered the vehicle in Paris in 1938. Despite an initial refusal to sell, Zipper eventually acquired the car two decades later. After a distinguished American sojourn, the Delage found its way to a Swiss connoisseur in 2019.
The Peninsula Classics 2022 Best of the Best Award festivities graced the scenic Quail Lodge & Golf Club in Carmel, California, marking its fourth occurrence there, on 13 August 2023.