Targa Tasmania Gallery and Awards

I love Targa Tasmania. I love the celebration of driving and cars and petrol and all that caveman stuff. This year’s fleet was on show in Launceston last night and as I’m currently working in the north of the state, I thought it wise to pop in and have a look.

This year is unofficially dubbed (by me) as the Year of Renault. There are always plenty of Porsches at Targa and a good smattering of your modern Japanese REXEVOs but it’s rare to pick up a third dominant thread of cars. That changed this year with Renaults making a prominent mark.

There are at least five current model RenaultSport Meganes in the fleet, one RS Megane of the previous generation, as well as a couple of absolutely gorgeous vintage Renaults from a few decades ago, one of which is an Alpine. I went a bit overboard taking photos of the older Renaults so please forgive me if French metal isn’t your thing, but hopefully you’ll agree they were pretty compelling.

It would be remiss of me to not acknowledge the tragic death of a Targa Tasmania competitor earlier today. This is the first Targa death in 17 years. A driver, age 71, died when his Porsche Cayman came off the road and hit a tree. His 26 year old navigator was severely injured and is in hospital.

This is very serious, very active recreation with very real risks.

BEST IN SHOW…. goes to the aforementioned Renault pairing. It’s a Renault 5 Turbo2 and an original Renault-Alpine A110.

Renault 5 Turbo2 and Renault-Apline A110
Renault 5 Turbo2 and Renault-Apline A110

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BEST PRESENTED….. goes to the awesome work done on this Mazda RX-7

Mazda RX-7 Targa Tasmania
Mazda RX-7 Targa Tasmania

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MOST QUESTIONABLE…. not only is this Porsche a most un-Targa-like Panamera, it’s also Left Hand Drive.

Porsche Panamera Targa Tasmania
Porsche Panamera Targa Tasmania

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MOST AUTHENTIC…… goes to this Datsun 1600. I’d be surprised if his Targa preparation amounted to anything more than a change of oil and plugs.

Datsun 1600 Targa Tasmania
Datsun 1600 Targa Tasmania

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MOST AUSSIE….. All that’s missing is the yobbo in a wifebeater with a tinny. Seriously Australian piece of machinery.

Holden Monaro Targa Tasmania
Holden Monaro Targa Tasmania

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MOST LIKELY TO MAKE MY MATE MATS SPIT HIS CORNFLAKES ALL OVER HIS KEYBOARD….. Don’t know if it’s original, but this Porsche 914-6 sure would be fast. Looked great with the flares, too.

Porsche 914-6
Porsche 914-6

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MOST SENTIMENTAL FAVOURITE….. This Jensen CV8 is here every year and always looks awesome.

Jensen CV8
Jensen CV8

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MOST IMPRESSIVE CARBIES…. on this Datsun 260Z.

Datsun Triple Carbs
Datsun Triple Carbs

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BEST USE OF A DISPLAY CAR AS A DINNER TABLE BY ‘MODELS’ HIRED TO STAND NEXT TO IT….. The same Datsun. Launceston’s not quite Hollywood, ya know. The concept of hiring girlies to stand next to show cars is quite new to Targa. At this rate, I hope it doesn’t catch on.

Datsun 260Z
Datsun 260Z

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The rest of the Gallery is below. Lots and lots of photos, including a few too many of those gorgeous Renaults.

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12 Comments

  1. “yobbo in a wifebeater with a tinny”
    Translation, please? ๐Ÿ™‚

    Where was the exhibition held? Looks like a velodrome.

    1. Translation – an Aussie version of a redneck wearing one of those dark blue singlets common to the hard working classes, carrying a can of beer. ๐Ÿ™‚

      The exhibition was at the Silverdome, in Launceston, which I believe does occasionally function as a velodrome, amongst other things.

  2. Wow! the last pic of the Imp — it’s got a spare engine in the trunk! What’s the rest of it look like? Years ago I had one of these, we called it the Toaster. Drove like you wish a vw beetle would, but really crappy british construction.

  3. The ‘Most Obscure’ entry was sold here in the US as a Dodge Challenger. I suppose it had a different name in Oz.

    I love the Jensen (natch), and I’ve always had a soft spot for the Alpine.

    Great photos.

    1. They sold that as a Challenger in the US? Wow. It was a Mitsubishi Scorpion here in Australia, the slightly larger accompaniment to the Mitsubishi Sigma. The Sigma did start life here as a Chrysler and then it became Mitsubishi. i was a bit young to follow the changeover.

      1. Yes, it was. It was also the Plymouth Saporro. Google helped me to remember that, but I recall it now. The interesting thing was, as memory serves, the Saporro ads were along the lines of ‘personal luxury’ cars of the times (think Ford Thunderbird or Oldsmobile Cutlass) and the Dodge ads were much more boy racer in tone. Same flippin’ car! You want to talk about badge engineering at its worst, there it is.

  4. In addition to being sold as the Dodge Challenger it was simultaneously sold by Plymouth dealers as the Sapporo. Thankfully, it was never badged as a Chrysler. Who knows what they would have called it?

    1. Well, see my comment, above, you beat me to it. According to the Wikipedia entry the car was the Sapporo in Japan, too. I guess if you have the Challenger (American name) and Sapporo (Japanese name) the Chrysler would have been a European name from the Chrysler history books, perhaps the Ariane?

      I remember one of my cousins had the Challenger and traded it almost immediately (it seemed) for a Buick Skyhawk hatch (yes, it was the ‘Nighthawk’ edition) because it wasn’t that comfortable for him because the air conditioning was truly anemic in the American South and he’s tall like me. The Buick stayed around for some time, probably because he took a beating on the trade.

  5. I had a browse at wrest point casino on the day of the finish. i was drooling over these old Alfa’s and AlpineRenault’s while my mates were wondering why i thought a dodgy old white hatch would be worth so much and have me so excited… Kids these days, just don’t understand real class!

    Also surprised that there were a lot less classic Alfa’s going round this year? One Giulia 1750 gt, a 70’s spider and a GTV6…. that was it?

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