Classic Cars at AEC Annual Car Show


Morgan Fuerstenberg graphic

The Automotive Enthusiast Club held its annual car show in the A&W parking lot on Oct. 16. Approximately 115 vehicles entered this season’s car show. The club has been holding a car show for the past 10 years. 

Along with checking out the project cars, pristine classics and custom beauties that gathered in the A&W parking lot, visitors voted for their favorite car in nine categories: New School Car, New School Truck, Classic Car, Classic Truck, Euro, JDM/Asian, Sport Bike, Cruiser Bike and Sh!tbox. Also, there was a special category, Best in Show, which was voted upon by the AEC members.

Some of the AEC members voiced that they most look forward to any Japanese cars that show up, classics, trucks and the occasional “goofy JDMs,” Jeremiah Butkovich AEC president said.

The UW-Platteville car show hosted people from all around the tri-state area. Though there are several car shows in the area, “this is the only one that is university-affiliated,” Butkovich said. “It’s a great way to bring the car community together,” Vice President Jacob Harnish added.

Some memorable mentions from the car show were the three project cars from the AEC, the “Crustang” from the Pioneer Performance Club and a 1989 Toyota Tercel wagon entered by Ethan Klosa, a UWP senior. 

The AEC’s three project cars were a 1984 Firebird, 1984 BMW 528i and a 1991 Chevy S10 truck. Along with being showcased in car shows, the AEC enters the Firebird into drag races and the S10 truck in the Autocross. Currently, “the AEC has about 70 members and 50 active members,” Joey Gburek said, a UWP senior and the unofficial team lead that has consistently worked on the Firebird. The AEC meets every Thursday in Russell Hall, room 101B at 6pm.

The “Crustang” is the only project car from the Pioneer Performance Engineering club and has been reworked for several years. “The hardest part is rewiring the entire car,” Club President Tove Timp said. The “Crustang” had its first race on Oct. 14. 

Timp acknowledges that the automotive field is a male-dominated interest, which can be intimidating for beginners and others to join and can lead to issues of toxic masculinity. “The club is a safe space for those in the LGBTQ community, and lets people learn in a safe environment,” Timp said. The Pioneer Performance Engineering meets on Wednesdays in Busby Hall, room 137 at 7 p.m.

Klosa, the owner of the 1989 Toyota Tercel wagon, won the Sh!tbox award. He notes that most people recognize the model of his car from the show, “Breaking Bad.” He came into ownership four months ago and already notes some of the unique characteristics of his car. 

Every angle of the car is different, from the mismatched beige doors and brown siding to the green hubcaps. “It probably consumes more oil and coolant than gas,” Klosa said. 

Whether it be car enthusiasts or those who are just curious, this car show has a way of making the heart pound. From lines of cars with their hoods up, flaunting clean to shining mechanisms, every car displayed a bit of their owner’s personality in the minute details from the choice of interior to the stickers on the back windshield.