Salon Privé London 2023 highlights: UK supercar debuts, American hypercars, Richard Hammond and more

London’s Salon Privé event is back on the beautiful lawns of Royal Hospital Chelsea, so what spiked our interest?

For the second year running, Salon Privé’s luxury car event returns to the magical lawns of the Royal Hospital Chelsea. The weather was sweet, the people were in high spirits, but most importantly, the cars were spectacular.

A car event like this isn’t too uncommon here in the UK – we’re really lucky. You have many others such as Goodwood Festival of Speed, Salon Privé’s Concours d’Elégance sister event at Blenheim Palace, and many things happening over in Bicester. 

But what makes this one so unique is that all the cars you see on display are actually for sale. Therefore, we’d imagine it’s pretty dangerous to attend if you’re a wealthy individual who likes to make some rash financial decisions. 

So what was there? Well, this show is an opportunity for brands to showcase their latest and greatest cars from all ends of the spectrum. It also meant we could get exclusive looks at UK debuts for cars such as the Polestar 3, Hennessey Venom F5, Abarth 500E Scorpionissima, Delage D12, Weissmann Project Thunderball and many more. 

Not only this, but it was also a chance for some other brands to get some visibility including Former F1 driver Jenson Button’s Coachbuilt Whiskey brand and Richard Hammmond’s The Smallest Cog workshop. 

But by far the most interesting part of the event was the ‘Concours de Vente’ section that featured around 60 of the very best collector cars from the UK and Europe’s most prominent specialist dealers, all of which are for sale. These ranged from simple classic Porsche 911s, all the way up to some seriously big hitters like the Ferrari F40 and Lamborghini Miura. 

As for new car highlights, we would have said the Lamborghini Huracan Sterrato which was supposed to make its UK debut at this event, but unfortunately was unable to make it into the country in time. But the good thing about Salon Privé is that there’s always something just as spicy waiting around the corner.

The cars that really stood out to us were the Rubystone Red Porsche 911 (992) GT3 MR tuned by Manthey Racing, the bright yellow Hennessey Venom F5 (with the most aggressive V8 engine sound you could possibly imagine), the Delage D12 V12 hybrid hypercar, and the Rimac Nevera – a car that Richard Hammond made sure to stay clear of in case he somehow crashed it. 

Speaking of the bloke off the telly, The Smallest Cog showed off its latest restored vehicle: a unique Chapron-bodied Delahaye which has been restored to its original colours as commissioned by Louis Chiron.

It’s a remarkable-looking thing. Richard Hammond was there showing it off along with his two partners in crime Neil and Anthony Greenhouse who are the workmen behind the scenes. Speaking at the event, the Grand Tour presenter, said “We’re delighted to have the chance to show off these colours in front of a discerning audience at the fast-becoming-legendary Salon Privé London in 2023.”

All in all, this year’s event was a success. It showcased some remarkably rare and interesting classics, some brand-new supercars and hypercars, plus it’s essentially one of the world’s most expensive car boot sales – with some cars fetching millions of dollars.

If you want to see us cover events like this in the future, make sure to follow The Cornea Impression and myself on Instagram to get live updates to your feed.

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