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Road & Track

Road & Track September 2013

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

3 min.
editor's letter

Try to pick your favorite Tony Stewart moment and you'll probably fail. There are too many beauties. Take, for example, how he poked fun at Ward Burton's Southern drawl: "I don't speak Ward." A reporter once asked Stewart if he thought racing had gotten too safe. Anyone else would have played along. Ever the authentic, Stewart fired back, "Gee, maybe the media center's too safe because you guys got four legs on your chairs. Maybe we should blow one of them up. What do you think about that?" He abhors B.S. So naturally, I wanted to hear his thoughts on the new Corvette. We've been on a long vigil waiting for this all-new version, only the seventh in the Corvette's 60-year history. Prototypes were running way back in 2006 at GM's Milford proving…

4 min.
your turn: letters to road & track

Dear R&T, I just finished "America: A Two-Lane Owner's Manual," and I had to fill you in on what you just missed in North Carolina. Had you driven north from Asheville about 45 minutes on the Blue Ridge, at Little Switzerland, North Carolina, you'd intersect with NC 226-A. There's very little traffic—unlike the Dragon, which has turned into a slow-speed trial for every Electra Glide in the Western Hemisphere—and more challenging curves per mile than the Dragon, hands down. The locals call it "Diamondback." I've driven both many times, and Diamondback wins. JERRY HOFSCHNEIDER, Ocala, Florida I was glad to see that you included some Wisconsin roads in your recent piece on great drives. I would highly recommend Wisconsin 67 from the Illinois state line all the way to Elkhart Lake (and right…

3 min.
how to watch: f#*@ yeah motorsports!

It sucked to be a motor-racing fan in 1993. The series that weren't available on TV far outweighed what cable and major networks bothered to offer. Twenty years later, those dark days have given way to live streaming, On Demand, and televised options that require a healthy dose of OCD for even the most committed fanatic. Now the problem is finding everything. Major domestic and international series are all over the proverbial dial, making it an even greater challenge to track down regional delights from places like Australia, Germany, and England. Plus, a number of broadcasting rights traded hands during the off-season, with the burgeoning NBC Sports Network poised for the biggest growth spurt, and ABC/ESPN, Fox, and TNT all strengthening their bonds with NASCAR. With all the changes to…

2 min.
it's my daily driver

NAME: PETER LACE AGE: 58 LIVES: SAN FRANCISCO, CALIFORNIA VEHICLE: 1977 MERCEDES-BENZ 6.9, MILAN BROWN OVER BAMBOO, ONE OF JUST 1816 SOLD IN AMERICA I've always liked the idea of a "sleeper." The 6.9 looks a lot like a diesel S-class, and what's more innocuous than an old diesel Mercedes? The 6.9 was known as "the banker's hot rod," as was the 6.3 before it. Parts for these rare beasts are not cheap and never have been, and skilled labor is hard to come by. You can find a beater for $5000 or so, but you'll want to spend well over $10,000 or $15,000 for one in good condition. A woman at the car wash who owned a 6.9 when the car first came out approached me and said, "Can it still do 150?" Gas mileage is…

2 min.
this month's obsession: specialized turbo

We couldn't care less about electric mopeds. This isn't a moped. It's the coolest bike we've ever ridden, and it illustrates what the Toyota Prius made us think impossible: Combining electricity with something we love can produce something we love even more. The 50-pound Specialized Turbo ($5900, specialized.com) will never move on its own. Instead, it has a torque sensor that measures your output and, with the help of a hub-mounted electric motor, amplifies it. Pedal softly and you won't notice a thing; gun for coronary redline and you'll be dicing with city traffic. The electric assist, which peters out at 28 mph, is so well-calibrated that pedaling feels natural. The best part? Because the Turbo magnifies what you're doing, it encourages you to push harder. You'll get the best workout…

2 min.
rookie mistake/pro fix

? Every instructor has told me that I overdrive the car in slow corners, going too fast at the wrong time. All the books say that slowing down is the key to going faster. That's great, but how do you know when? HERE, AND IT REALLY DEPENDS ON THE corner, is the old saying: slow in, fast out. And obviously, "slow in" is a relative term. You don't want to be babying it into the corner. How do you know if you're braking too early? Just look for the freight train of cars passing you down the inside. If you're able to brake without wasting time coasting or going past your turn-in point, you've found your happy medium. But finding it will involve experimentation. Spend a session braking way too early…