On November 19-20, 2022, enthusiasts from all over the US of A will be converging to the Donald E. Stephens Convention Center to attend the Muscle Cars and Corvette Nationals (MCACN). This event, now in its 13th year (it started in 2009 but then COVID hit), has wowed spectators and owners alike with its mix of top-shelf muscle cars with the unusual and mysterious. No, it’s not all Hemis and ZL1s at MCACN, and that’s the beauty of it all.
So, what’s slated for this weekend before Thanksgiving? Here are several displays to whet your appetite.
- Wings over America Display: Do you like Chrysler’s winged aero cars from 1969-70? The Brothers Collection will be bringing the top examples of the Dodge Charger Daytona and Plymouth Superbird. You can bet that several will be Hemis for that authentic NASCAR homologation look.
- Class of 1972 Invitational: This year marks 50 years since the muscle car market truly gave up on itself. As such, it’s a moment to celebrate the last of the barnstormers that you could buy at dealerships—after 1972, there were no more W30 4-4-2s, big-block Camaros, Air Grabber Mopars, HO GTOs and Boss-inspired Mustangs. Let’s celebrate 1960s values one more time with this roster of 1972, shall we?
- Malaise-era Muscle Display: This display will feature muscle cars and poseurs that were produced from 1973-87. Do you think a Mustang King Cobra will hold your attention? What about a Dodge Magnum?
- Class of 1967 Invitational: This was a pivotal year for the market, so why not celebrate 55 years? Chrysler Corporation introduced the GTX and Coronet R/T, Shelby added a big-block GT, GM brought out the Camaro and Firebird, and Mercury added its Mustang-based Cougar … plus a lot more.
- X-code Invitational: An offshoot of the 1972 Invitational is this display focusing on the 1972 Olds 4-4-2 W30, which was the final “true” W-Machine. All the cars present will have an “X” in the fifth character of the VIN, which is how to determine the pedigree of the 700 or so W30s built.
- Corvette Triple Diamond: We can’t forget about the Corvette, especially since MCACN originally existed as an event for these fiberglass sports cars. The country’s finest original and restored Corvettes will be found here, including NCRS Top Flight and Bloomington Gold cars.
- Buick GS Special Display: Buicks are never ignored at MCACN, so join in on the celebration with some of the best Gran Sports this side of Flint. Special emphasis will be on 1972 GS Stage 1 models.
- Wellborn Aero Warriors Invitational: Yes, another aero display, but this one will also feature 1969 Charger 500s. As Tim and Pam are noted Mopar collectors with a NASCAR bent, don’t think this will be a duplication of the above.
- Maple Leaf Muscle: Presented by Muscle Cars, Bone Stock and Modified magazine, this display will feature muscle cars from north of the border, whether it is indigenous (like Beaumonts and Acadians) or originally sold new in Canada. If your tastes run eclectic, this display is for you.
- Performance Wagon Invitational: Back in the day, options were a la carte. As such, if you wanted a big-block wagon, you could have it. Want a 4-speed? That too. In this display, all the wagons will have performance options from the factory.
- Shelby & Mustang Pinnacle Display: Not many people know Mustangs better than Bob Perkins. This exhibit will showcase Shelbys and Mustangs that have achieved both MCA Gold and SAAC or Mi-America Concours certification.
- Corvette Legends Invitational: The focus on this invitation will be C2 “big tank” cars from 1963-67. These cars were built for the racetrack but were merely street-going Corvettes with the right options.
- Vintage Certification: “Preservation, not Restoration” is the theme as cars present will be judged on their originality and condition. This is truly a special display.
- GMMG Legends Invitational: Remember Berger Chevrolet? The Grand Rapids, Michigan dealership produced some latter-day Camaros in the early 2000s in conjunction with GMMG, and you can view the handiwork here.
- Studebaker Legends: Studebaker was a performance company! Don’t believe me? Here you’ll find a host of supercharged chariots from South Bend, from Larks to Hawks to Avantis.
- Pure Stock Muscle Car Drag Race Display: Have you read about this race? You can check out some of the participating vehicles and talk with the owners. Maybe you’ll race your car next September?
- Nashnutz AMC Invitational: If AMC is your jam, this display will hit you with the best examples of AMC muscle, including memorabilia. Trust me — it won’t be all AMXs.
- Super Stock Legends Invitational: Along with a panel discussion hosted by Mopar journalist Geoff Stunkard, this display will feature an “amazing group of real Pro Stock cars of the 1970s” with an emphasis of the 1967-68 seasons.
- Mr. Norm’s Grand Spaulding Dodge Invitational: In memory of the famous Dodge dealer from Chicago, this display will present a historical overview of the hottest performance cars that came from Grand Spaulding Dodge.
- 1965 Pre-production Shelby Invitational: Apparently, among 1965 Shelby GT350s, there are the regular cars and the pre-production ones. This display will demonstrate the uniqueness that each of the pre-production cars have so you can walk away going “hmmm.”
- Big Body Muscle: Before the GTO, muscle cars were big, but big performance cars didn’t die out in 1964. If you’ve never seen a 1968 428 HO Catalina sedan, this is where you’ll find one.
- Barn Finds/Hidden Gems: This is the most popular display. Hosted by Automotive Archeologist Ryan Brutt, the vehicles found here may be rough, but they’re diamonds in the rough. Trust me that here you too can feel the joy of finding a desirable car and getting it out of the woodwork.
- Milestone Certification: This is a new judged program for select OEM restorations. Will this be a battle royale to see what restorers triumph? Or is it just about the cars? We’ll let them hash it out while we can appreciate the art involved.
Saying “all this and more” may sound like a cliché, but there will be more because not all cars are part of a display. The only way to find out is to attend but, if you can’t, the ClassicCars.com Journal will be covering the event in all its glory.