Pre-WWII luxury at Meadow Brook Concours 2009 - click above for high-res image gallery

From the moment the world's first automobiles were built, the wealthy began demanding better transportation than the masses. Brands like Rolls-Royce, Lincoln Pierce-Arrow and Cadillac delivered big, beautiful vehicles with luxury appointments to coddle their occupants. Big, gaudy hood emblems and acres of shiny chrome and brass showed onlookers that big money was rolling by.

At Meadow Brook this weekend, there were over 100 exclusive vehicles from automakers from Packard to Peugeot, and most of them held very true to their original designs. Some cars from the early 20th century had tool boxes that resided on their running boards, and even these containers were decorated in rich-looking finishes. Wheels were made of wood, windshields were optional, and even a sixteen-cylinder Cadillac had less power than a typical four-banger of today. Designers and engineers collaborated to make some of the most beautiful and unique-looking vehicles of any time period, and we've got the pictures to prove it. Click on the gallery below to view the best of the pre-WWII vehicles from Meadow Brook.

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