An incredible array of replica sports cars steal the limelight in the comprehensive March issue, which is on sale now (5 February). The great pretenders are joined by a dazzling selection of coachbuilt British coupés, an Amphicar 770 and a tyre-smoking pre-war Delage, while Aston Martin's DBS and DBSV8 do battle and the best 1980s barges money can buy are put to the test.
You'd be forgiven for thinking that our cover shot is worth millions, such is the attention to detail and flawless build quality of our four headline replicas. Looking every bit at home at Goodwood as out on the road, we compare a quartet of the best build-your-own sports cars that money can buy, from the aluminium-bodied Hawk Cobra to a stunning short-wheelbase Ferrari that is Maranello through and through.
As well as testing the replicas on track, the legalities and practicalities of building your own car are fully explored, with expert opinion from the individuals and firms that have created the cars, as well as the licensing authority. Make your dreams come true on a budget!
Equally as eye-catching is a voyage in one of the slowest – yet most exciting – classics to be produced in the 1960s. The wondrous German-built Herald-powered classic is driven on land and up the River Thames and proves every bit as revolutionary today as when it first rolled out of its Karlsruhe factory. Andrew Roberts is piped aboard to dive into the history of this incredible and rarely seen car.
Triumph, MG and Sunbeam produced three of Britain's best-loved roadsters, but it took the coachbuilders of the early '60s to turn the mass-produced TR4, MGB and Alpine into something truly special. Simon Charlesworth gathers a Triumph Dove GTR4, Sunbeam Harrington Alpine and MGB Berlinette for a winner-takes-all blast across the Peak District to see which car works best on the road, and which is better on paper.
What happens when you shoehorn a monstrous Hispano V8 aero engine into a featherweight Grand Prix chassis? Wheelspin, and lots of it. Mick Walsh pulls on his driving gloves for an exhilarating drive in the Bequet Delage, a fire-breathing stunner that shares its heart with some of the most illustrious Allied fighters of WW1. Incredibly, the car is road registered!
An Aston Martin DBS twin test will appeal to those of a more practical disposition, particularly if you are torn between the full-fat V8 version or its lightweight straight-six sibling. You'd be hard-pressed to tell the difference from the outside, so Ross Alkureishi plants his right foot and takes to the country lanes. Will the DBSV8's mountain of torque make up for the eye-watering fuel bill?
Martin Buckley has already examined the best barges of the '60s and '70s, so this month he finds himself sitting on the plump velour captain's chair of six stunning survivors from the decade that taste forgot – the 1980s. Britain's Ford Granada 2.8i and Rover 3500 Vanden Plas square-up to France's Peugeot 604 STI and Talbot Tagora GL, while Alfa 6 and Toyota Crown Super Saloon add a touch of the unusual.
Meanwhile, there's full coverage of the Traversee de Paris, which took place in the French capital mere days after the terrorist attacks that shocked the world. At home, Autosport International kicked off the event season, joined by The London Classic Car Show. Records were broken as demand for New Year classic meets went through the roof, while the poor weather did nothing to dissuade the Kentish Border Car Club from their historic sporting trial.
The latest columns from Walsh, Elliott, Taylor and Buckley are all there, plus book reviews, Garage Gear and models.
Read all about the latest trials to befall the C&SC Our Classics fleet, including Port's Land-Rover, Elliott's Interceptor, Evans' 2002tii, MacLeman's MGB and Page's box of bits, which is beginning to look remarkably like a Morgan Super Sports.
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