Octane March 2021

Octane is a premium monthly magazine celebrating over 100 years of automotive design, from classic Bentleys to the latest BMW. We have been at the heart of the motoring industry for seventeen years, so we know our stuff when it comes to classic cars. Written by enthusiasts for enthusiasts, the magazine captures the exclusivity and excitement of the classic car world so you can experience it all wherever you are.

United Kingdom
Autovia Limited
12 Issues

in this issue

2 min
what’s in a name?

WHISPER IT, BUT when the Bugatti Veyron steamrollered its way into the spotlight in 2005 I didn’t really approve. I thought that Ferdinand Piëch had blundered big-time, applying the wrong one of the many brands at his fingertips to this blunderbuss of a car. Was this behemoth really a Bugatti? Not to me; conceptually, this modern-day version of the fastest lorry in the world should have had Bentley written all over it. Bugatti, after all, should be all about words such as lithe, agile and nimble, while Bentley is your go-to marque for brute force and pummelling power defeating weight. And what says power better than an 8.0-litre quad-turbo W16 punching out a thousand horsepower to shift two tonnes from standstill to a top speed of 253mph? I’ve grown up a little…

1 min

BEN BARRY ‘I have formative memories of watching late-night road rallies in late-70s/early-80s Cumbria and remember WRC cars passing school, Rally GB-bound. I’d driven all sorts since, but never a competition-spec machine from the rear-drive golden era that so profoundly shaped my tastes.’ Tolman-prepped Sunbeam Lotus: pages 96-104. RICHARD HESELTINE ‘The Vignale 8V represents everything I love about 1950s Italian exotica. It’s two parts coachbuilt conveyance, one part thoroughbred racer.’ For the full story on this rare-groove 8V, see pages 60-68. And to read Richard’s interview with Porsche legend Herbert Linge, turn to pages 90-94. GUY LOVERIDGE ‘EV Starr’s photographs capture what it was really like to be in and amongst the racing scene of the 1960s. I was excited by each image and the stories behind them – as well as the personalities who loved them…

1 min
per ardua ad infinitum

This one-day event at HERO’s Bicester HQ had to be reinvented just hours before the off (and several times before that) to adapt to the fast-changing Covid-19 regs. Yet, after much of the 2020 calendar was wiped out, and despite the mud-spattered faces (we’re looking at you Mary Antcliff, left, in a 1929 Riley Brooklands with Nigel Dowding!), the 19 December event offered 70 crews a hugely enjoyable set of 11 treacherously slippery tests and three road regularities. Winners were Paul Crosby and Andy Pullan in a Porsche 911, clocking up just over a minute in penalties. Darrell and Nicky Staniforth were 40 seconds behind in a Mini-Cooper S, with the Porsche 924S of David Alcock and Barry Green a further 20sec back.…

5 min
coming up…

13 February Concours in the Hills Fountain Hills, Arizona, has long been known for its giant fountain, which shoots water 170m into the air, but has more recently received attention for this relaxed gathering of around 1000 cars, which last year raised $262,000 for charity. concoursinthehills.org 14-17 February Rally Neige et Glace Based in the French village of Malbuisson, close to the Swiss border, this event does what it says on the tin, serving up 1000km of reliably wintry conditions to test crews and their cars. zaniroli.com 4-6 March WinteRace A field of 50 pre-1977 cars, an expertly plotted route through the Dolomites and some of Europe’s most beautiful mountain scenery, plus snow, snow and more snow. winterace.it 5-6 March Per Ardua ad Infinitum South West One-and-a-half days of tough competition including 15 regularities, 21 special tests and some night driving. heroevents.eu 5-7 March Phillip Island Classic The…

3 min
east anglia transport museum

AND NOW FOR something completely different. Describing itself as ‘A Museum on the Move’, the East Anglia Transport Museum is meant to appeal to all ages: the older generation will enjoy reminiscing with the younger generation about a different, simpler world. Youngsters who have probably never seen a trolleybus or tram will be equally enchanted. There are no supercars here, just a relaxing, interesting and informative day out. Just outside Lowestoft, the museum celebrates all kinds of vehicles and is laid out like a small village, just perfect for a gentle stroll, or visitors can travel around the site in all manner of public transport. Just inside the entrance is the Chapel Road Terminus, the main pick-up point for trams and trolleybuses. Beyond that is Tramway Avenue, with its tearooms and…

5 min
brexit: what it means for classics

BREXIT BRINKSMANSHIP (blame the EU or blame the UK Government, depending on your views) resulted in an incredibly lastminute agreement at the most difficult time of year, compounded by a new Covid crisis. Brexit’s full implementation will inevitably take time, but what are the immediate effects? The simple answer is that very little has changed – but there are small changes that could have a big effect for some, and the lastminute deal has caused temporary panic among suppliers on both sides of the Channel, causing them to refuse to supply or ship parts until they are sure of the requirements and liabilities. For classic car owners planning a trip to Europe, advice on driving in the EU is at gov.uk/guidance/driving-in-the-eu. As before, you must carry your UK driving licence with you.…