Less than five miles from the Philadelphia International Airport lies a museum that should be a top destination for automotive collectors and enthusiasts alike. The Simeone Foundation Automotive Museum houses a once-private collection of sixty-five record-breaking and competition-crushing cars as an elegant homage to automotive innovations spawned by competition.
The stuff of legends casually lounges on the showroom floor, ready for open-air demonstration on a nearby three-acre lot. On a trip to the museum at the end of December, the second-place 1970 Le Mans “Hippie” Porsche 917LH in psychedelic green and blue sat next to a 1962 Ferrari 250 GTO, two spaces down from a 1957 Testa Rossa.
“Assembled over 50 years by renowned neurosurgeon Dr. Frederick Simeone, the Museum contains over 65 historically significant cars including Ferrari, Alfa Romeo, Bugatti, Mercedes, Jaguar, Bentley, Porsche, Aston Martin, Corvette, Ford and more,” describes the museum’s website. Most vehicles in the collection have been preserved in their original condition, displaying the chips, scratches and superficial dents accumulated in the pursuit of racing and breaking records. Others, such as the Mille Miglia-winning 1938 Alfa Romeo 8C 2900B MM, below, have been restored to their original finish.
Founder and executive director of the Simeone Foundation Dr. Frederick Simeone has sought to keep these cars in running condition, and during the temperate months of the year the collection hosts demonstration days. During these events, typically four or so cars are brought onto the museum grounds and are driven for the public to see, hear and smell. Check out the below video from the Simeone Museum’s YouTube channel, which shows the July 12, 2014 duPont demonstration day, and even includes a trip to the duPont REGISTRY headquarters in St. Petersburg.
Events like this are what Dr. Simeone hopes will captivate generations to come, as they provide a tactile opportunity for these pieces of history and art to both inspire and be appreciated by visitors. Be sure to include this in your next outing in the Philadelphia area; it’s well worth the time.
For demonstration day schedules, museum information and a list of featured vehicles go to their website at: SimeoneMuseum.org.