Popular At Amelia Concours d’Elegance, Famous Movie Cars

A world-famous time machine was a huge hit on Amelia Island, FL.

“Back To The Future” DeLorean Showcased At 2021 Amelia Island Concours d’Elegance

Pop culture “star cars” usually attract a lot of attention on the show field when featured at the annual Amelia Concours d’Elegance. This year in 2021, the silvery star appearing was the DeLorean from the 1985 blockbuster, “Back To The Future.” The world-famous time machine was a huge hit here on Amelia Island.

Delorean, Hollywood's original "Back To The Future" car, Amelia Island, Florida, Concours d'Elegance, May 2021.
Image: Historic Vehicle Assoc. Facebook Post, May 22, 2021
Doc Brown’s DeLorean, used in 1985’s “Back To The Future,” is a 1981 DeLorean DMC-12.

This iconic car and the story of time travel that captured the imagination of millions back in the 1980s has indeed transcended time. It’s a movie also enjoyed by the kids of those who actually sat in movie theaters back in 1985 and watched its debut on the big screen.

DeLorean, "Back To The Future" car displayed on Amelia Island, Florida. Concours d'Elegance Facebook photo.
“Back To The Future” car, Golf Club of Amelia, Displayed at the Amelia Concours d’Elegance (Facebook photo May 22, 2021)

The Delorean was presented here on Amelia Island by the Historic Vehicle Association in partnership with Hagerty and Peterson Automotive Museum.

This 1981 DeLorean DMC-12 also became the 29th vehicle added to the National Historic Vehicle Register, an inductee this year in 2021.

Hagerty Celebrates Car Culture & Automotive History

Hagerty manages the National Historic Vehicle Register with the U.S. Department of the Interior. This registry is a permanent archive of history’s significant vehicles and motorcycles. Since its start back in 2009, the registry has inducted twenty-nine vehicles to date.  

Take a trip down memory lane by watching the video (further below), of the very first Amelia Island Concours d’Elegance held back in 1996.

Hagerty Has Acquired The Amelia Concours

News of Amelia Island’s event ownership change came in late June 2021, when it was announced that Hagerty had acquired the Amelia Island Concours d’Elegance. The news release was issued one month after the successful completion of Amelia Island’s 26th annual event.

What does the future hold for “The Amelia” event under its new owner? Like fans anticipating the coming sequel of a previous hit movie, we’ll just have to wait and see. But the initial news release about the ownership change mentioned Hagerty’s intent to expand the Amelia Island Concours d’Elegance.

Time travel would certainly come in handy in so many situations. Imagine if we really could jump in a time machine, set coordinates for various places and dates around the world, and peer into the future. One can, however, take a look back in time to the year 1996 below, and glimpse the very first Amelia Concours d’Elegance.

LOOK BACK IN TIME — “The Amelia” show’s debut in 1996 (by MotorWeek), 4-minute video:

Each year the Amelia Island Concours d’Elegance features a legendary racer car driver as an honoree. Back in 1996, the first show’s honoree was Sir Stirling Moss (briefly interviewed in the video, who since passed away in 2020). Bill Warner, chairman/founder of this Amelia Island event, also appears in the video describing the show as “a celebration of 100 years of the automobile.” The event showcases Warner’s passion for cars and his love of racing.

Over the years, Warner in various interviews describes himself as “a race-car guy.” He created an event with powerful combustion by combining speed with elegance on what’s known as a “Field of Dreams” at the Golf Club of Amelia. This combo set “The Amelia” apart from other Concours events.

Back when the Amelia Concours was created in 1996, America’s west coast had California’s famous Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance, a show with established history dating back to 1950. Warner states an objective at the very first Amelia Concours:

“We want to create the East Coast’s, or at least the Southeast’s, finest Concours d’Elegance.”

Bill Warner, 1996 (MotorWeek interview)

In light of the growth, popularity, and reputation of excellence the Amelia Island Concours d’Elegance has earned during the past quarter century, it seems Bill Warner has achieved an aspiration set long ago.


Editorial note — this article was updated/revised in August 2021.

By The Editor

Observations of island life, news & opinion by W.B. Lawson. Wendy has enjoyed the laid-back Amelia Island lifestyle since 1993. Her professional background began at a newspaper in NY. She then worked in PR/Investor Relations at Fortune 500 company, and later became a managing editor at an equity research publishing firm. She was Series 7 licensed while with Merrill Lynch Private Client Group.