Photos and Story by Rob Hawkins

The annual kit car show held at Stoneleigh has become the major event of the year over the last 30 years. Thousands of people and cars attend, along with major manufacturers keen to show off their skills. Held south of Birmingham in the middle of England, on Sunday and the first Monday in May (a bank holiday in the U.K.), it’s also when most kit car clubs hold their annual general meeting. And if the weather is good, it often turns into a barbecue and beer festival. All told, Stoneleigh is one rockin’ event!

This year’s show didn’t disappoint. The weather held up, and the club fields were full of everything from exotic Beetle-based Novas (Sterlings) and 50-year-old beach buggies to rows of Cobra replicas and over 200 Lotus Seven-style Westfields.

Inside the exhibition halls, manufacturers from across Europe displayed their vehicles, including several new models. Highlights include two replicas of the classic Ferrari 250 California coupe, one from Mirage Auto Developments, and the other an entry-level rebody for the BMW Z3 from Tribute Automotive. Famed car designer Lee Noble (Ultima and Noble M10, M12 and more) returned with a new model that looks like a modern take on the beach buggy. The Mini-based Cox GTM was back, along with several variations of FF Buggies that first appeared in the 1980s.

Everyone we spoke to was keen to export overseas, and many have agents around the world, including the U.S. and Australia, making the biggest kit car show in the U.K. open to a worldwide audience. So even Yanks from the other side of the pond are invited to rock out at Stoneleigh.