Petersen Automotive Museum
Even if you're not a car enthusiast, you'll be astounded by the 150 automobiles on display.
The Petersen Automotive Museum explores the history of automobiles since their inception and how they've shaped American culture — particularly in Los Angeles, where automobiles have had a large impact on the city's history. After a 14-month, $90 million renovation, the museum reopened to the public in December 2015 and showcases three new levels of exhibits and interactive displays.
When it originally opened in 1994, Robert E. Petersen said, “This museum is about the role the automobile has played in defining our past and present, as well as shaping our future.” Now, after decades of chronicling the history of the automobile industry and how it has shaped not just the world’s culture but LA’s culture in particular, the museum and its exhibits turn to the future. Designed by architect Gene Kohn, the new building is a beacon for modern art with three floors that cover the artistry, industry and history of automobiles.
Only 150 vehicles are on display at any given time even though the Petersen has more than 300 vehicles in storage. This keeps their 100,000 square feet of museum grounds innovative at all times with rotating exhibits. See vintage models like the 1938 Hispano-Suiza Dubonnet Xenia, or compete for the fastest lap time at the museum's new racing simulator room. For an additional $20 to your general admission ticket price, you could even visit the Petersen vault, open to the public for the first time, to see the mysterious models in storage.