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Cars & Motorcycles
Road & Track

Road & Track March 2014 - April 2014

Road & Track includes technical features on automotive subjects, wide-ranging feature stories, spectacular automotive art and standard-setting new-car photography, humor, fiction, travel stories, book reviews and the most comprehensive racing coverage offered by a monthly magazine.Bonus: iPad Interactive

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in this issue

4 min.
your turn: letters to road & track

Dear R&T, As much as I enjoyed this year's PCOTY issue, it was hard for me to ignore the article's America-centric view. What is the point of reading a story where, before the first word is written, I know that the Corvette will win, even if it is slower or doesn't handle better than the Ferrari F12, Mercedes-Benz SLS Black, and Porsche Cayman? Not to mention the sheer luxury in the E63, whereas the Corvette cannot even spell Alacantera [sic]. Personally, I see it as a travesty that the Lotus Exige S, the Porsche 911 GT3, and heck, the Camaro Z/28 were not included. Jason Cammisa appears to be the only editor with his head on his shoulders. LIAM [LAST NAME WITHHELD] (Via email) The Lotus is no longer sold here, the GT3…

3 min.
editor's letter

The barbs didn't get pointy until our third meeting. By then, we'd whittled our list of coolest cars—this month's cover story—from well over 200 candidates to around 80. And what began as a lively and entertaining debate about the stuff we love shifted to heated campaigns to save personal favorites from the red pen. One such car was the 1988 McLaren MP4/4. That machine, driven by Ayrton Senna and Alain Prost, was the product of designers Steve Nichols and Gordon Murray and was one of the most dominant F1 cars ever built. We have its successor, an MP4/6, sitting in our lobby, on loan from Hexcel, the Utah company that helped produce its carbon-fiber tub. At least once a day, I catch Executive Editor Sam Smith standing next to it, staring. Contributing…

1 min.

JAY LENO Wonderfully nutty and obsessed with cars. His massive collection includes Duesenbergs, Porsches, a McLaren F1, and even the Blastolene Special (look it up). We once visited his garage and found him under a steam-powered car, wearing an oil-stained shirt and smiling like mad. NICK MASON Has been collecting old race cars—and competing in them—since long before the practice became fashionable. Auto-book writer and, oh yeah, drummer and composer for Pink Floyd. BILLY GIBBONS ZZ Top founder and guitarist. Ignited the custom-car scene in the Eighties with the red '33 Ford on the cover of the band's album Eliminator. Later, he built CadZZilla, a chopped and stretched 1948 Cadillac that defines the term "lead sled." DAVID GOODING Thanks to the auction company he founded in 2003, it's entirely possible that Gooding has had contact with more…

23 min.

Very un-mellow yellow page 20 Fuel for the Driven Life [ R&T : 04 : 2014 ] Formula 1 goes turbo. PAGE 24 Jackie Stewart on Weekend of a Champion14 Carbon-ceramic's footprint 16 Mercedes's hybrid-killing diesel 26 Talking development with Ford's head of global product 28 BY THE NUMBERS 17 Career F1 pole positions 1973 Named "Sportsman of the Year" by Sports Illustrated, the only race-car driver to ever win the award 3 Formula 1 world drivers' championships 1 Order of the British Empire The King of Monaco After more than 40 years in the wings, a "new" Jackie Stewart documentary from Roman Polanski. There's a scene in Weekend of a Champion, Roman Polanski's early-1970s film about Formula 1 champion Jackie Stewart, in which the driver, clad in his underwear, talks the Oscar-winning director through the upcoming 1971 Monaco Grand Prix, using a racetrack…

5 min.
avoidable contact: engines i've blown

The old bikers, the guys with the rolled-over odometers and faces leathered by wind and sun, say that there are only two kinds of riders: Those who have put their bikes down and those who will. What if we were just as brutally honest with new track-day drivers? There are only two kinds of drivers out there: Those who have come back on the wrecker and those who will. Most of the hundreds of driving students I've coached over the years were afraid they were going to crash. Statistically, it's unlikely. A track day is a controlled environment, and if you stay within your limits, the odds of something bad happening are slight. The only crash I've ever had while riding as an instructor was in a very fast car that…

4 min.
highway k: four wheels of solitude

It's quite possible my 1992 Miata—faded reddish paint, worn driver's seat, cloudy plastic rear window and all—saved my life. Not in the way that cars are supposed to, with airbags deploying and crumple zones crumpling and lots of drama. It was much more gradual than that, slower and quieter and mostly internal. That car saved me, or more specifically my sanity, by being a place I could think. It's hardly news that the average member of modern society is ill-equipped to be alone with his thoughts. We became far too connected way too fast. Drivers went from tape decks to cellphones as our major distraction in about half a generation. A mobile phone used to be a status symbol for a specific kind of ambitious go-getter. Now everyone has a multifunction pocket computer,…