Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Summer Reading List

I don't know if you had a list of books to read in the summer when you were in school, or if you go out of your way to find things to read in the summer, but one constant for some of us is reading car magazines.  No matter how many are published, it seems like there is always something new and interesting to read about at the local bookstore. So, until on line sellers and ebooks wipe out the publishing industry, I seem to be addicted to car magazines. I've been diagnosed as having Car Magazine Acquisition Syndrome (CMAS), which is not fatal, but just one of many diseases common among men. Luckily my CPAS and GAS are currently in remission, so I can dedicate more resources to CMAS.  Oh, and CPAS is Car Part Acquisition Syndrome, and Guitar Acquisition Syndrome.

Here's a short run down of some of them floating around the NMS garage.

Grassroots Motorsports: This is a classic American mag that covers all kinds of car sports, focusing mostly on local events, cars you can actually afford (more on that later), and lots of car part ads. Plus when you subscribe you get a free t-shirt, so I fell prey to their sales pitch at the SCCA convention this year.

TOP GEAR: The BRITISH Top Gear TV show magazine, and this one I like because it features just about ALL Euro cars in their monthly run down of all cars for sale in the UK.  Lots of reviews of the latest unaffordable cars, and just all kinds of great photography, plus regular columns from the TV show hosts.

F1 Racing: Another British publication, but focused on F1, this issue had several articles on one of my favorite drivers, Brazilian three time world champ Ayrton Senna, marking 20 years since he passed in a crash at Imola during a race.

Sportscar: The official publication of the Sports Car Club of America, just join the SCCA and they mail you this every month. SCCA sponsors all kinds of events from autocross to track races, various race series, rallycross, etc. etc.

Forza:  All Ferrari, all the time! Each issue has a mix of the latest Ferrari road cars, F1 results, historical Ferrari cars, and other Ferrari news.

Hemmings Sports and Exotic Car: This is a US publication, and pretty much spans the globe on older cars of all makes. In addition to articles on restorations, car shows, auctions, there are lots of regular columns that cover DIY repairs, history of famous makes, with a heavy emphasis on European cars.

Motor Trend:  I do have one complaint, and Motor Trend is an example of it: most cars in this magazine are just too expensive!  Sure, I know that the average sales price of cars sold in the US is now over $30,000, but come on, how many more articles and reviews on $60,000 and above BMWs and Mercedes Benz' can you publish? Just the cover of this one says it all, the two new BMWs highlighted in the photo list at $65,125 and $62,925.  In the interest of full disclosure, I have a free subscription to this magazine for attending a car show they sponsored last year. Not a bad deal for free, but I think I've read too many expensive car reviews for now. Maybe there's room for Affordable Car Monthly?

Racer:  One last US magazine, and this title says it all.  They cover all types of big league racing, and from the cover with the  "baseball cards" of drivers from Indy Car, CART, and F1, that tells you where they focus. If you're only interested in one of those types of racing this may not be for you, but it's well done with a wide variety of articles and great photos.

That's the short version, but covers most of my favorites....other than Automobile, Hemmings, Evo, etc.
Happy reading!

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