A lot has changed at the Long Beach Grand Prix since the Formula 5000 and Formula 1 cars raced there in the 1970s and 1980s. The races now include premiere sports car series, off-road trucks soaring over Shoreline Drive, drift cars and more.
But one thing remains the same -- an electric atmosphere that showcases Long Beach and offers excitement at every turn. After the coronavirus pandemic halted plans for the race in 2020, the drivers and race cars return for the Acura Grand Prix of Long Beach Sept. 24-26.
A look at the cars from the early days of the Grand Prix of Long Beach to today.
Mario Andretti (USA) in action at the 1978 Long Beach Grand Prix Formula One race.
April 1978: Carlos Reutemann drives the #11 Scuderia Ferrari 312T3 ahead of Niki Lauda in the #1 Parmalat Racing Team Brabham Alfa Romeo BT46.
April 1978: Reutemann, ahead of Jean-Pierre Jabouille in a Renault Turbo RS01, won the 1978 Formula 1 race, three years after Brian Redman won the first GP of Long Beach, a Formula 5000 race.
March 1980: Nelson Piquet, driver of the Parmalat Brabham Ford BT49 during practice.
March 1980: Piquet drives the #5 Parmalat Racing Team Brabham BT49 Ford Cosworth DFV 3.0 V8 ahead of Emerson Fittipaldi in the #20 Skol Fittipaldi Team Fittipaldi F7 Ford Cosworth DFV 3.0 V8 and Jody Scheckter driving the #1 Scuderia Ferrari 312T5.
April 1981: Alan Jones of Australia in action in his Williams Ford during the Long Beach Grand Prix.
March 1981: Gilles Villeneuve drives the #27 Scuderia Ferrari 126CK during the United States Grand Prix West. Alan Jones won the race in a Williams.
March 1981: Hector Rebaque drives the Brabham Ford Cosworth BT49 on the streets of Long Beach.
April 1982: Bruno Giacomelli drives the #23 Marlboro Team Scuderia Alfa Romeo 182 V12. F1 conducted its final race in Long Beach to following year.
Manfred Winkelhock of Germany drives the #9 Teams ATS ATS D5 Ford Cosworth DFV 3.0 V8 during practice for the Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach on 3rd April 1982 at the Long Beach street circuit in Long Beach, California, United States. (Photo by Getty Images)
April 1986: Al Unser Jr. at the 1986 CART Indycar race, won by Michael Andretti.
April 1992: John Andretti at the 1992 Long Beach Grand Prix, won by Danny Sullivan.
April 1993: Nigel Mansell turns a corner in front of the Long Beach Convention Center. Paul Tracy won the 1993 event.
April 1996: Paul Tracy #3 holds off Jimmy Vasser, but not for long. Vasser went on to win in 1996.
April 1997: View of car taking a turn at the Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach. The 1997 event marked to first of back-to-back wins for Alex Zanardi.
April 1998: The circuit with the Queen Mary in the background.
Brian Herta/USA of team Rahal drives his Reynard Ford 98I around a turn during the Long Beach Grand Prix in Long Beach, California.
Al Unser Jr. drives his Mercedes Penske during the Long Beach Grand Prix in Long Beach, California.
Race winner Paul Gentilozzi storms through the hairpin in his Ford Mustang Cobra during the 1999 Long Beach Trans-Am Grand Prix April 18, 1999 in Long Beach, CA. (photo by Ford Motors)
General view of Long Beach as Ford driver Bryan Herta leads from the start during the CART Long Beach Grand Prix April 18, 1999 in Long Beach, CA. (photo by Michael L. Levitt/Ford Motors)
April 2000: Helio Castroneves, of Brazil, drives his Honda Reynard 2KI for Marlboro Team Penske.
April 2000: Flame bursts from the rear of Michael Andretti's Newman-Haas Ford Lola during the Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach.
Gil de Ferran of Brazil who drives a Honda Reynard for Marlboro Team Penske races by during the Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach, part of the CART FedEx Championship Series in Long Beach, California.
Donald Miralle /Allsport
A close up of Patrick Carpenter of Canada who drives a Ford Reynard for Player's Forsythe Racing Team as he races by the Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach, part of the CART FedEx Championship Series in Long Beach, California.
Brian Simo who drives for Tom Gloy Racing speeds around the corner during the Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach, part of the CART FedEx Championship Series in Long Beach, California.
April 2002: Adrian Fernandez drives his Honda Lola during the Saturday afternoon qualifying session.
April 2003: Buzz Aldrin sits in his car during the Celebrity Race.
April 2004: Justin Wilson of England drives his #34 Mi-Jack Racing Ford-Cosworth Lola.
April 2006: Three-time GPLB winner Sebastien Bourdais.
April 2007: One of the great sports prototypes of all time, the Audio R10 driven by Allan McNish during qualifying.
April 2008; Will Power of Australia drives the #8 Aussie Vineyards - Team Australia KV Racing DP01 Ford Cosworth in front of the Justin Wilson of England in the #02 McDonald's Newman Haas Lanigan Racing Team DP01 Ford Cosworth.
April 2009: Danica Patrick drives the #7 Motorola Andretti Green Racing Dallara Honda during practice.
April 2009: Actress Ashley Judd (L) and driver Dario Franchitti in the winner's circle at the 35th annual Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach.
April 2010: The #62 Ferrari 430 GT of Gianmaria Bruniduring and Jaime Melo leads a pack of cars during the Tequila Patron American Le Mans Series Race.
April 2011: Mike Conway, driver of the #27 Window World Cares Andretti Autosport Dallara Honda, races on track during the practice.
Will Power of Australia, driver of the #12 Team Penske Dallara Chevrolet, celebrates after winning the IndyCar Series Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach on April 15, 2012.
The IndyCar Series Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach in April 2012.
Ryan Briscoe of Australia drives the Team Penske Dallara Chevrolet during the IndyCar Series Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach on the streets of Long Beach on April 15, 2012.
Jonathan Lloyd, NBCLA.com
A view of the action during the 2015 Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach weekend.
Dario Franchitti of Scotland driver of the #10 Target Chip Ganassi Racing Dallara Honda during the final warm up for the IndyCar Series Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach on April 21, 2013 on the streets of Long Beach, California. (Photo by Robert Laberge/Getty Images)
Grand Prix of Long Beach
IndyCar competitors round the hairpin turn at the 2018 Grand Prix of Long Beach.
IMSA competitors roar toward Turn 1 at the Grand Prix of Long Beach.
The 2020 Acura Grand Prix of Long Beach was scheduled to take place mid April, but was called off due to the coronavirus pandemic. Construction of the temporary track was halted due to the rain in Long Beach on Thursday, March 12, 2020. (Photo by Brittany Murray/MediaNews Group/Long Beach Press-Telegram via Getty Images)
LONG BEACH, CA – JULY 26: Construction crews build the first of many viewing grand stands along the route for the Acura Grand Prix of Long Beach in Long Beach on Monday, July 26, 2021. The event scheduled for September 24-26 will allow race fans a chance to enjoy five races, exotic cars, jumping trucks, a lifestyle expo and family fun zone along with food truck, entertainment and more. (Photo by Brittany Murray/MediaNews Group/Long Beach Press-Telegram via Getty Images)