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Georges Irat, Cadillac Phaeton Among Classic Cars At Celebration Of Automobiles

One of the terrific new events commemorating the centennial of the Indianapolis 500 this year is the 100th Anniversary Indianapolis 500 Celebration of Automobiles – a “beauty pageant” for more than 250 classic automobiles of any make or manufacturer from the first 50 years of the Indianapolis 500, 1911 through 1961.

The cars are divided into two divisions, one a general collection of cars from 1911-1961, and the other classic cars produced by the 24 manufactures that competed in the first Indianapolis 500 in 1911. Class winners will be honored on May 14 after judging by a panel led by 1963 Indianapolis 500 winner Parnelli Jones.

Below are descriptions of two very unique cars that will be on display during the Celebration of Automobiles: The Third In Class (European Classics) Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance winner 1927 Georges Irat Model A Cabriolet and the 1931 Cadillac All-Weather Phaeton 452A V-16 that was named Most Elegant Car at Amelia Island.

1927 Georges Irat Model A Cabriolet
The 1927 Georges Irat Model A Cabriolet was a French automobile manufactured by engine builder Georges Irat and was designed by Maurice Gaultier. This car was one of two ever made and has the distinct honor of being exhibited at the 1927 Pairs Automobile Salon. The car features a 1988 cc (2 liter) four-cylinder overhead valve with a four-speed transmission.

After this car was designed, the company decided the only way it could truly be described is by using the slogan “La Voiture de L’Elite”, meaning “Car of Elite.” In 2005, the 1927 Georges Irat Model A Cabriolet won Third in Class (European Classics) at the distinguished Pebble Beach Concourse d’Elegance. The automobile also was awarded First in Class at the Meadow Brook Concourse Judges Trophy at the Greenwich Concours d’Elegance and Best in Class at the St. Michaels Concours d’Elegance.

1931 Cadillac All-Weather Phaeton 452A V-16
In 1931, Cadillac made its first production car with a 16-cylinder engine that was also the first four-door convertible sedan with grind-up glass windows, the All-Weather Phaeton 452A V-16. Only 250 versions of this model were created.

Adding to the uniqueness of this car are single-bar bumpers, dual horns, a concave monogram bar, a radiator screen, 13-inch Guide “Tiltray” headlights, dual rear lights that match the headlights, triple molding on the dust shield panels of straight sill styles, five doors in the hood and a single matching door in the side of the cowl.

The beauty that is the Phaeton has made it an award-winner on several occasions. It has won the AACA James Melton Memorial Trophy twice, has earned the CCCA Premier Status and has won Best in Class at both the Greenwich and Hilton Head Concours d’Elegance. The Phaeton was also named Most Elegant Car at Amelia Island.


2011 Indianapolis 500 tickets: Tickets are on sale for the 100th Anniversary Indianapolis 500, “The Most Important Race in History,” on Sunday, May 29, 2011 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

Race Day ticket prices start at just $30. Fans can buy tickets online at, by calling the IMS ticket office at (317) 492-6700, or (800) 822-INDY outside the Indianapolis area, or by visiting the ticket office at the IMS Administration Building at the corner of Georgetown Road and 16th Street between 8 a.m.-5 p.m. (ET) Monday-Friday.

Children 12 and under will be receive free general admission to any IMS event in 2011 when accompanied by an adult general admission ticket holder.

Tickets for groups of 20 or more also are on sale. Contact the IMS Group Sales Department at (866) 221-8775 for more information.

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