In 1995, a small classic car cruise along Detroit’s historic Woodward Avenue was planned as a fundraiser for a local soccer team; not even 20 years on, it’s the world’s largest one-day automotive spectacle.
Held each year on the third Saturday in August, the little cruise that just kept getting bigger brings over a million auto enthusiasts to metro Detroit. As 40,000 classic cars roar up and down a 20 mile stretch of Woodward, fans take in oodles of roadside food, drink and entertainment.
While the actual cruising is a nod to mid-century American car culture, a wider variety of participants have come out in recent years. You’ll now see unique and exotic models of the ‘80s, ‘90s and ‘00s from all over the world mixed in with genuine automotive
Last year, for example, you may have seen this vintage FIAT Cinquecento and this future-classic FIAT 500c hanging together along Woodward:
This year, from Friday, August 17 through Sunday, August 19, you’ll find models old and new at our dedicated spread at Woodward and 13 Mile Road
in Royal Oak. Product specialists will be on hand throughout the weekend, along with the FIAT Street Team, based on nearby Main Street
If you and your FIAT are cruising this year, let @fiatusa
know using the Street Team hashtag #FIATlive. .
Here are a few tips to get the most out of your time along Woodward:
- Arrive early! Roadside space is at a premium. If you arrive super early, you may get to do a little cruising yourself – even if your ride is merely an icon-in-training.
- Turn around! Not all 40,000 classics take to the road at once. Woodward’s parking lots will be jammed with muscle cars and hot rods just begging to be experienced up-close.
- People Watch! The cars are flashy, but so are the ladies and gents who love them. You’ll quickly learn that cat-eye glasses and cuffed jeans are actually pre-hipster.
- Grab swag! Queue for a ride-and-drive, or just nab a few bumper stickers and zip drives from one of the events many big-deal sponsors.
- Have dinner! There are tons of great eateries along Woodward, particularly through trendy Royal Oak. Grab a bite and get back to the curb as the sun sets and THE headlights rise.