- radwood, a series of car shows around the country celebrating the "automotive lifestyle of the 1980s and 1990s," brought its late-20th-century aesthetic to detroit last weekend.
- prizes are awarded, and car owners and spectators are encouraged to dress in the style of the era, too.
- boston's event is in october, and the los angeles radwood happens in december.
radwood, the car show that celebrates the best of the 1980s and 1990s, strolled into detroit this past weekend to show us pristine examples of cars that were rare then, and cars you can't believe still exist today. roughly 450 cars were on display on detroit's riverfront, with stuff most people under 30 have only seen on television via video games or movies. there are those whose existence was quickly forgotten, such as the oldsmobile achieva, and rides you may never have known existed, like the autech zagato.
radwood isn't for anyone wanting to indulge in viewing familiar cars in concours condition. instead of perfectly preserved classics on serene lawns, there's almost anxiety-producing overload: the car you're looking at quickly disappears behind the car next to it, which has something even better hidden behind it. but that's what its fans like about radwood.
raddest import went to the 1984 nissan 300zx 50th anniversary edition shown at the top of this page. the anniversary edition came with two-tone paint, a digital gauge cluster, and bodysonic speakers in the seats. the owner added black louvers to the headlights and rear windows to complete the period-perfect 1980s sports-car look.
raddest in show was awarded to a 1991 autech zagato stelvio az1 (above), a mix of italian design with japanese power, based on the japan-market nissan leopard. it's powered by the single-turbo v-6 from the nissan 300zx z32 with a four-speed automatic transmission.
look familiar? the two rides above belong to c/d staffers, but only one of them has been on the orv trails this year. technical editor dave beard's geo tracker lives on after an earlier off-road battle, and print director tony quiroga's 1991 bmw 325ic definitely did not experience rain for the first time in its life on its way home from the show.