Cars & Motorcycles

Octane February 2020

Octane is the authoritative guide to the best classic cars in the world

United Kingdom
Dennis Publishing UK
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12 Issues

in this issue

2 min.
200, not out

WoW, 200 issues of Octane. Already. It seems like only yesterday that it was launched into an expectant market by that intrepid gang of four, two of whom – Robert Coucher and Sanjay Seetanah – remain core members of the team to this day. Group advertising director Sanjay even secured backing via a snatched phone call to mobile phone magnate and then-owner of Crystal Palace FC, Simon Jordan, when he (Sanjay, not Simon Jordan) was on a Spanish beach with a horrible hangover after a ‘somewhat destructive’ stag night. That entrepreneurial opportunism and carpe diem attitude remain an integral part of Octane’s chemistry to this day… along with unimpeachable editorial standards and aesthetic excellence, naturally. We should likewise honour the inestimable Mark Dixon, who has also been chipping away at this…

2 min.

Our heartfelt thanks to all Octane readers While putting together this special 200th issue of Octane, we spent plenty of time congratulating the people who have helped make it possible – but the fact is it would not exist without you, our readers. It is you who have made Octane great. Thank you! Rally of the Tests 7-10 November Participants on the Historic Endurance Rally Organisation epic from Torquay on the English Riviera to Chester sampled pretty much all the road and weather conditions that this sceptred isle has to offer, as crews tackled a series of regularities and tests plus challenging night stages. Fittingly in the 60th anniversary year of the Mini, this ‘toughest yet’ running was won by Paddy Hopkirk’s Mini-Cooper S – pictured right – after the rally great loaned…

4 min.
coming up…

1 January Brooklands New Year’s Day Gathering Classic car owners and enthusiasts haul themselves off the sofa and head to Brooklands to kick off 2020. All manner of machinery will assemble on the circuit’s famous banking, and the museum will be open all day, too. brooklandsmuseum.com 1 January Vintage Stony This busy little event in Stony Stratford is notionally for pre-1940 cars and bikes, but there’s always an equal amount of post-1940 stuff. There’s nothing to see post-2pm, though, so don’t roll out of bed too late. vintagestony.co.uk 5 January Bicester Heritage Sunday Scramble An opportunity ‘to clear the head and the engine’ after Christmas and, of course, to explore the workshops and showrooms of the specialists at Bicester Heritage. bicesterheritage.co.uk 9-12 January Autosport International There’s something for fans of just about every motorsport discipline at Birmingham’s NEC, and tyre-smoking antics…

3 min.
british motor museum

Despite its potentially confusing name-change in early 2016 when it became the British Motor Museum, this impressive facility just off the M40 (and now backing onto JLR) is habitually known as ‘Gaydon’ by enthusiasts, just as near-namesake the National Motor Museum is simply ‘Beaulieu’. Having morphed out of the British Leyland Heritage Collection over decades, its modern incarnation was established in 1983 when the British Motor Industry Heritage Trust was granted charitable status. It initially focused on British cars from British marques, and has benefited from some great legacies to showcase the best, most innovative and most gloriously mundane that this nation had to offer. Construction of the current site, the impressive ‘Deco echo’ Heritage Motor Centre adjacent to what was Rover’s design and testing facility on the old RAF Gaydon V-bomber…

3 min.
v&a celebrates motoring

‘THE V&A’S MISSION IS TO CHAMPION THE POWER OF DESIGN TO CHANGE THE WORLD’ A new exhibition honouring the car has opened at London’s Victoria & Albert Museum and will run until 19 April. Previewed in Octane 193, ‘Cars: Accelerating the Modern World’ is in the Sainsbury Gallery and examines how the car was a major catalyst for change in the 20th Century via some 15 cars and 250 related objects. It highlights three areas on which the subject had a massive impact: our relationship with speed; manufacturing; and the landscape around us. While ‘Going Fast’ and ‘Making More’ need little explanation, the ‘Shaping Space’ element explores in depth the car’s impact on our environment, not in the sense of pollution, but on the landscape and how it opened up the…

3 min.
news feed

High flying at Heveningham Hall The fifth annual Heveningham Concours motorsport and aviation festival will take place on 27-28 June. Once again the tiered terraces behind the Palladian Suffolk mansion will host 50 of the finest and rarest motor cars while the aviation concours will feature a dozen historic propeller aircraft. Preceding the public event on Friday 26 June, the Heveningham Tour will guide entrants and special guests through the Suffolk countryside and take in a stop for lunch. A country fair and the Horsepower Hill sprint will complement the concours. Chairman of the motorsport judging panel, Max Hunt, said: ‘For our fifth anniversary, we are pulling out all the stops for an incredible show. All proceeds from the event go to charity, and the concours also provides a full scholarship…