Car Spotting in London: A Gearhead’s Travel Guide
I was recently in London for work and had a little downtime to explore, so after seeing all of the big tourist destinations (Big Ben, London Eye, etc.) I made some time to check out some cars. The United Kingdom is home to many automakers including McLaren, Aston Martin, Jaguar, Bentley, Rolls Royce, Lotus, Land Rover, and even Mini Cooper. It’s also a wealthy area and global city, so I was pretty confident I could find some cool cars in just a few hours of walking around, and sure enough I did. It’s also a town that you don’t really NEED a car for, so cars tend to be more of luxury items unless you’re commuting from outside of the city on a daily basis; as such, the cars you do see tend to be of higher caliber. For anyone visiting, I’ve included my map of everything to see below (link here if embed doesn’t work), but most of the dealerships are centralized making it easy to see them all:
If you’re going to start somewhere, I’d suggest the McLaren dealership – it is very close to Harrod’s, which you’ll probably want to check out anyway, and from there you can either hop on the Knightsbridge tube and head South to Lamborghini & Ferrari (South Kensington stop) or head East to Green Park where all of the Park Lane stops are. They’ve also got a public viewing area so it’s very open and inviting to go check out the cars.
From there, I next went to the Lamborghini and Ferrari dealerships. Oddly enough the Lamborghini dealership was closed for renovations while I was there, with a big sign teasing the upcoming launch of the SUV. In the meantime, they relocated the inventory to the Maserati dealership which is right behind where the Lambo dealership normally is. As a bonus, this dealership is owned by H.R. Owen and sells a lot of other unique cars too, and had a huge showroom full of cars worth checking out, like this Alfa Romeo 4C spider:
Next, I took the tube back up to check out the Park Lane Dealerships, which was great for both checking out the inventory at the dealerships, but all of the cars parked along the street in this very wealthy areas, like the GT3RS pictured at the top of the post, as well as the chrome wrapped Bentley Benyaga below:
Park Lane leads into Berkley Square, which is where a lot of the major dealerships are. These dealerships are all pretty small, but pack a good punch. Another plus is everything is very walkable, so if you only have time to go to one area, head to Berkley Square and check out that area. The Brits get all sorts of cool special editions we don’t get in the States, like this “Black Badge” Rolls:
Last but not least, my trip culminated at Audi, because what kind of Audi superfan would I be if I didn’t? The dealership packed a whopping inventory of three cars, but one was a solar orange R8. They also had a replica of one of their original racecars which was neat:
Walking around London, you’ll see all sorts of cool cars on the streets – during my few days I saw a S3 Hatchback, RS6 Avant, RS4 Avant, several Aventadors, and countless Bentleys and Rolls Royces driving around. The tuning scene is also a little different, and oddly enough tuned Range Rovers with body kits were pretty popular. It’s hard to grab good pictures of cars that are driving around or have people in them (not to mention, a little creepy), but you’ll see tons of neat stuff.