If you’re a lover of classic cars, vintage cars, old cars, or historic motorcycles – visit Knysna. It’s home to some of the largest private collections of old vehicles in South Africa – and some of the most active motorcar clubs, too. Here are some great showrooms to browse and admire these beauties of previous decades!
The Motorcycle Room
This private collection (situated in Thesen Harbour Town and open to members of the public) offers a real trip down memory lane for any of us who rode bikes as youngsters – or even just dreamed about riding them!
The collection includes classic bikes, vintage enduro bikes, motocross bikes, superbikes, a wide variety of custom bikes, and – “especially,” according to the museum’s owner – “the tough little 50s of our schoolboy days.
“Bikes like the Suzuki AS 50 of the 1960s, the Yamaha RZ50 of the late 1980s (known as the King of the 50s), and the more recent electric-start Yamaha TZR50 – probably one of the biggest and most expensive 50cc motorbikes ever built.”
The collection is continually growing, too: during 2020, for example, The Motorcycle Room acquired the test bike for the Bulldog Land Speed Record that was used in wheel testing, and in testing conditions on Verneukpan in South Africa (as opposed to conditions on salt flats in the USA).
“We have scored a fascinating bit of bike history which is amazing for Knysna,” said the collection’s owner.
Every bike here has a story – and, since The Motorcycle Room is all about the love of bikes, the restoration and rebuilding bays are visible from the museum floor.
House of Classic Sports Cars, Knysna
House of Classic & Sports cars in Main Road Knysna is a “trip down memory lane”. The beautiful showroom has a great selection of beautiful vintage, veteran, classic and sports cars on display, and for sale. Want a project car to complete yourself? They have a number of vehicles to choose from. Expect a selection of Packard, Buick, Plymouth, Ford, Pontiac, Rolls Royce, Studebaker, MG, Triumph, Morris and more.
Conveniently situated at 70, Main Road – right on the N2 – they are open from 9am to 4pm Monday to Friday. For more information email firstname.lastname@example.org, call +27 44 382 1000 or visit their website www.hocasc.co.za.
Sedgefield Classic Cars, Sedgefield
Sedgefield Classic Cars has the widest range of Classic and Vintage Cars available for sale in South Africa. One of the most popular tourist attractions on the Garden Route, they have a variety of 50 to 60 classic cars on display at all times, including veteran, vintage, post vintage to post 1945 vehicles.
They are open from Monday to Fridays from 7:30am to 5:00pm and Saturdays from 8:00-13:00.
Directions: Travelling on the N2 from George towards Knysna they are based on the left hand side just after the traffic light in Sedgefield. Turn left at this traffic light, then immediately right onto the service road – they are about 200 metres further up the road. If travelling from Knysna towards George on the N2, then we are on the right hand side.
To get involved, and for contact details of specific motorcar collections in the greater Knysna area, please contact the chairpersons of the clubs listed above via their websites.
Garden Route Motor Club
The members of this multi-marque club share a passion for classic cars – and particularly for historic vehicles, and vehicles from the golden age of motoring (the club is affiliated to the South African Vintage and Veteran Society: SAVVA).
This is a very active club, with 135 involved members (as of mid-2020), who own between them around 300 classic cars and motorcycles – with a strong bias towards sports cars.
Members of the club organise the annual Knysna Motor Show, which usually attracts more than 400 exhibits. They also welcome fellow enthusiasts to join in with monthly outings and annual multi-day tours or excursions (please see the club’s calendar of events for dates and details).
MG Car Club Southern Cape Centre
With a membership of around 100 MG lovers – who between them own around 150 MG cars (including two of the earliest M-Types dating back to 1929) – the MG Car Club South Cape Centre welcomes anyone interested in these iconic British vehicles.
Many of the members of this club are also members of the Garden Route Motor Club, so naturally the two tend to coordinate their outings and breakfast runs to ensure an even spread of events throughout the year.
Please check their Forever Young monthly newsletter for dates and details.
Triumph Club Garden Route
Relatively newly established, the Triumph Sports Car Club of South Africa Garden Route Centre currently (mid-2020) has already attracted about a dozen members, who between them own about twenty four Triumph cars – ranging from a 1953 Triumph Mayflower to a 1981 TR7 (the last year British Leyland built this marque).
This centre usually arranges an outing once every two months, with dates and details on the website.
- Contact: triumphclubsa.com