Top Marques Monaco
This annual event is like the Bilderberg meeting of the auto industry. The Top Marques show in Monaco is were you go when money is truly no object. When 99 percenters are protesting outside your building with placards and rotten eggs, you pack a bag and fly to Monaco for the weekend of the 18th in April.
There are no economy cars there. There are hybrids available but only ones matched with twin electric motors and capable of producing upwards of 800-900 horsepower. The Top Marques is the Auto Show for Supercars and Hypercars. The price tags on any given car range from a quarter million dollars to over 3 million. But nobody actually asks the price of the car, because hey, if you got to ask you can’t afford it. Only the insanely wealthy go with any true intent and they’re invited to go for free. Us little people aren’t excluded from the event. We’re allowed to pay $75 for the privilege to walk around and observe the toys of the rich.
And now the shows expanded. Even more toys and accessories are available. Superboats have been introduced to the show as well. And there is now a wrist watch display for, we’ll call them superwatches because we’re on a roll here, but these are watches that likely cost more than your car.
It is not just simply a display of decadence and excess, this is a chance for ridiculously and unimaginably wealthy people to take out one of these extravagant toys and decide whether or not they want to buy one. It’s an opportunity for people to be exposed to specialty car companies they wouldn’t otherwise have a chance to explore. Cars like the brand new start up Rimac Automobili and their full electric hypercar the Concept One. Even though it’s a start up car company pimping out cutting edge technology and pricing it at 1.3 million dollars, they still managed to make sales. Then there’s the Dartz Prombron, now minus the whale foreskin leather trim, and thank god for that. It’s exciting to see new comers to the show. Companies like Rimac Automobili are challenging the traditional front runners and long time champions of the supercar world with new and exciting technology. All the usual suspects are there as well, such as Pagani and Bugatti, McLaren and Koenigsegg to name just a few. You know these automakers, I don’t have to tell you.
There is a test drive area on a public road where potential buyers can ride as passengers while professional drivers show them what the car is capable of. The local police force is rarely happy with these test runs since they tend to be running at outrageously illegal speeds and maneuvers in very short time spans. The money and influence present keeps the test drives going and prevents cars from being taken away. This is likely accomplished by an untold amount of cash swapping hands, donations towards the police officers education fund for his children of course.
Wealthy or not, if you happen to be in Monaco on the weekend of the 18th of April 2013 you have to do yourself a favor and check this event out. Pay the $75 and walk around in a world of opulence and excess and fantasy. And don’t forget your camera.