The Grand Olympiastadion has witnessed countless historical events throughout its life. It was built for the 1936 Olympic games. Over the following decades, it was used for many memorable concerts and sports games of all kinds, including the 1974 and 2006 FIFA World Cup soccer games. More recently, the stadium has played host to another great event that's much more to our taste: the XS Carnight Show. Organized by the XS World community for the last seventeen years, it has attracted the show-scenesters from the whole of Germany and has grown to be one of the biggest and the greatest car shows in Europe.
Although it's hard to believe, the Olympiastadion was chosen to host this year's gathering only as a last-minute substitute for the scheduled scenario. Yet even in the perfectly organized German world, sometimes you must take emergency action, but thanks to the support of the car community, the 36th XS's party probably turned out to be even better than it would have been at the originally planned spot in the German city of Wolfsburg.
After all, the stadium's monumental building along with the big open terrain surrounding it, seemed a perfect place for organizing an event of this type. Although the Olympiastadion is the second biggest stadium in all of Germany with capacity of 75,500 people, also one of the largest in the world, it still managed to accommodate only a part of the cars that came for the show. The organizers had a tough job of selecting the VIP exhibits that were allowed to stay in the center of the happenings, but this way, the whole venue was filled with truly world-class jaw-dropping creations.
Suffice to say that the show headliners were two exceptional examples of Italian exotica turned into show car masterpieces: a slammed pink Maserati Granturismo and a Rocket Bunny style Lamborghini Huracan. The latter is currently known to be one of the hottest cars on the Euro-scene, credit not only to its looks, but also the fact that it's owned by a German movie star.
Surprisingly, only a few of the highest-ranked cars came from the VW family: there was one particularly impressive 2016 Audi TT with a bare carbon front end, a mean looking Audi A8 wrapped in matte yellow, and a heavily modified VW T3 'RS' pickup. Still, the crowd's heart was won over by a fine choice of Mercs and BMWs, including a quality E30 with the whole front end acting as a hood swinging forward on hinges, Jaguar E-type style.
Due to the strict selection of the cars shown within the stadium walls, it wasn't necessarily the best place to see what the average show scene builder was doing, as the cars shown there where in the elite league. To get the full picture, you would have to go outside and spend time wandering around the gigantic parking lot, where another several hundred cars waited for you. Even there, it wasn't the case of prioritizing quantity over quality. Rarely do you get such a wide variety of tuned cars as at the XS's gatherings. To see a rusted VW T1, a JDM-classic Nissan Silvia S15, a malaise-era Oldsmobile Cutlass, a new Hyundai Genesis Coupe, and the latest Audi R8 all in one place is something of an achievement for European standards.
Indeed, it's this eclectic mix of sometimes surprising projects that makes the XS party stand out in the tuning shows of Europe. Apart from the usual army of nicely executed VW Golfs and BMW e30s, the stance craze has sadly reached even the likes of vintage Mercedes W111 and Jaguar XJ limo, Mini Cooper, and an Opel Astra Kombi (a European copy of the late Saturn Astra in wagon guise). Of course, where else than here would we find projects as stereotypically German as a Bratwurst mit Weizen Bier (thankfully also present at the spot for the hungry and thirsty European Car guys)? If one had come here to see some Gothic font decals, Iron Cross stickers, cars like Audi Avants, cold war-era Trabants, Porsche 911s, VW Sciroccos of all generations, or even Volkswagen Kubelwagens, the lineup didn't disappoint. Still, it was surprising to learn that many of these Teutonic designs came not from Germany, but nearby Poland. This applies to the Rocket Bunny 4-series coupe, the absurdly perfect, or perfectly absurd, and already highly acclaimed among BMW fans recent creation of the Suchorovsky Design garage. It's not the first time we hear about the Polish tuning industry and certainly the guys there still have something to prove. Naturally, some French, British, and Italian tuning nuts didn't miss their chance to come over and prove that many good things occur in their scenes too.
Even if, as the name suggest, the XS Carnight lasts only one action-packed evening, it is a reason good enough to visit Berlin either as a participant or a spectator - as if anyone needs an excuse to visit Berlin. Thanks to the perfect organization and high quality of the event, the XS Carnight is growing to be one of the best tuning shows currently held in Europe. If you missed it, you don't have to wait the whole year for the next one: the XS World hosts a number of events each season all around Germany, including the ones reserved for classic tuned cars; we'll be there too.