The Largest Radwood Show of All Time Proves Everything Is Bigger in Texas

From high-end collectibles to trail-bound pickup trucks.

byStef Schrader|
Culture photo


There's one place where you can see everything from a Porsche 962 to an Itasha Autozam AZ-1: Radwood. Naturally, the one in the heart of Texas—Radwood Austin—is the biggest (and arguably the coolest).

There simply aren't many other car shows in Texas where you can display something like a stock Honda Prelude and have it get the kind of love it deserves. 

You could do Cars and Coffee, but there's a high chance that your glorious Soviet Lada will be overlooked in favor of a Dodge Charger Hellcat that's definitely going to hit a curb after the show, and is most likely still wearing those yellow lip guards. Sure, custom cars, antiques, specific marques, and subcultures have more specialized shows, but your un-slabbed, pristine 1981 Chrysler New Yorker might have a hard time finding the right home to show off even with a matching luggage set. 

Thus, people from all over the state and even farther flock to the show dressed in their best 1980s and 1990s gear with cars of the era along with other items from the time, like bag phones, Pogs, and of course, cassettes. Outdated modifications and accessories aren't a drawback here—they're celebrated. 

My 80s car was broken this time, but I donned a late-80s Fisher-Price shirt and a side ponytail, grabbed a couple of the toys featured on my shirt and snapped some photos of things that caught my attention anyway at the largest Radwood gathering to date. 

The best part of this show is walking around and hearing all the stories that go with these cars. Many of the cars are driven and enjoyed, so most attendees have a special story behind their ride. 

My best-in-show pick wasn't one of the well-preserved models or even particularly rare, but rather, it was a 10,000-mile 1983 Porsche 944 purchased from the salvage auctioneers at Copart. This car came to the show from College Station, Texas, after getting its frame bent straight, and it still had a missing pop-up headlamp and a bashed-up front end. It was originally intended to be a parts car for another 944, but the great condition of the rest of the smashed-up car and its low mileage convinced the family who bought it to fix it and drive it.

So, enjoy this gallery of the stuff that fascinated me the most from last weekend's Radwood show at Driveway Austin, from M5-swapped BMW wagons and rally-inspired road beasts to cool details like headlight wipers.

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