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CortinaDave

Car mags... do you bother now?

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I still get Practical Classics on sub as I used to work for Bauer and am still on the staff cheap deal,but it occurred to me that its sometimes weeks before I actually flick through it.

 

I used to buy 3 or 4 a month but there's so much content on here and the FB groups that I rarely bother now, especially since most are up to about a fiver now.

 

So... do you still buy car mags... did you ever?

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I’ve got both Autocar and Car on subscription, Car I still read cover to cover, but I find myself just flicking through Autocar more and more. I’ll probably never stop the subscription though as I don’t want to disrupt my collection. Autocar from 88 and Car from 85.

 

I’m an addict aren’t i?

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Yes. Chrome and flames, max power, practical classics, classic car weekly, Beano and car mechanics magazine. 

Forums took over and I find myself looking sometimes but the price, considering a third of these things are adverts, puts me right off. I don't anymore. Occasionally I'll stumble across a half decent blog or YouTube and I'll be reading that for a bit.

 

I done a bit of work for someone who produced some well known car mags and I probably could have got a deal, even freebees but the interest in such things has long gone.

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I still buy Practical Classics every month but the featured cars are slowly moving out of my period of interest as the mag adjusts its content to suit younger enthusiasts.  I also have Classic Cars on subscription but I rarely read it.  It has become the domain of car valuers and investors with only a few decent articles which concentrate on the engineering, history and driving of rarer marques.  I am not even slightly interested in prices achieved at auction or what cars are considered to be good to be stuffed away in storage for a year or two, purely to make a profit. I must cancel the subscription.

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I realised I was spending a fortune and cut right back. Occasionally treat myself to C&SC or The Automobile, do like a bit of Motor Sport as well. 

 

I've not read Car for years. Who's the editor now? 

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As someone who, when well, writes for Classic Car Buyer, I obviously have to say YES, don't I?

I started by buying Hot Car when I was 12, in the gloriously makeshift early 70s.  And tbh, I don't think I've progressed very far.  I have shelf after shelf of mags upstairs, with the excuse that they contain what might be useful or even vital information one day.  Who am I trying to kid?  I rarely even look at them.  Some - Practical Classics and Classic American - even feature me in the Readers' Wives Cars sections, or Letters.  I do like a car mag.

 

However, because of my present issues, I'm not reading.  Which is a shame because I really love to just sit and read.

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I've not bought a car mag for about 5 years, I used to get Impractical Klassic and Plastic & Sports Bra regularly in the 90s and 00s but gave up in a period of dole poverty and never started again; the attic has boxes of magazines I'll probably never read again, must get rid at some point. As with most people teh internetz supplies all that the mags used to do and on forums you communicate with like-minded idiots who've just made the mistakes you're about to, so can tell you how to fuck up with greater accuracy, rather than relying on muddy potatocam pictures of an MGB with fucked castle rails. I still have a Private Eye sub though.

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I picked up Classic and Sportscar in the newsagents the other day for a flick through but when I saw one of the columnists stating that it was time to 'put away the linens and get out the tweeds' I knew I was reading the wrong magazine. I mostly flick through them in the shop to see if anything makes it worthy of me opening my wallet. They rarely do.

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I still buy Practical Classics every month but the featured cars are slowly moving out of my period of interest as the mag adjusts its content to suit younger enthusiasts. I also have Classic Cars on subscription but I rarely read it. It has become the domain of car valuers and investors with only a few decent articles which concentrate on the engineering, history and driving of rarer marques. I am not even slightly interested in prices achieved at auction or what cars are considered to be good to be stuffed away in storage for a year or two, purely to make a profit. I must cancel the subscription.

Me too on practical classics, when the ‘affordable’ classics to buy now go from £8k to £25k I can’t but help think they are not aiming at people like me anymore. The quality overall seems to have gone down, from the actual writing to the paper used and there are so many typos/ missing words from where they haven’t set it right I think their budgets are reducing rapidly. I used to do freelance articles for the mini magazine and even ten years ago the pay was pretty laughable (but I enjoyed it), now I can’t imagine what they pay. I am sad to say it but I think they are very much a dead breed. I used to buy four or five different mags a month, now down to one car, one music and will be one music very shortly I think.

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Much less so nowadays. I bought Practical Classics and one of the Mini magazines fairly regularly, and before that I was utterly addicted to Car. Especially the Bulgin/Bremner/Setright years. Some great articles, great photography, beautifully written with a lot of emphasis on engineering and design rather than dabs of oppo.

 

Last one I bought was a classic and sportscar. I think it had two interesting articles amongst the ads for specialist dealers offering Aston’s, Ferrari’s et al. Very boring. And I felt remarkably short changed having just shelled out for something which was nothing more than a glorified upper class Exchange and Mart.

 

I had every issue of Car between June 1990 and September 1994, neatly boxed and in perfect Nick. The whole lot went in a skip as in those pre eBay days there wasn’t any sort of market for them. Obviously regret that now

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Modern Classics is for me, the only one worth reading.  And even then I only buy it at the airport before a flight. 

 

I had a subscription to Auto Express for years, but their bumming of German manufacturers and shunning of anything else got tiring.  Same story with What Car? happened well before that.  They gave the Renault Avantime 1 star.  Seriously....  :?

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I used to read car mechanics but it’s so off the mark these days it’s unreal. The service guides are invariably something completely irrelevant like a Volvo 940, some of the diagnostics articles are painfully boring though the project cars are usually good. It goes through fits and bursts. It was Rover 75 monthly at one point.

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Car Mechanics, used to read my Dad's copy from whatever age I learned to read. Used to drive my English Teacher nuts, she wanted me to read some Enid Blyton novel and i used to say 'not reading that, I read my Dad's Car Mechanics'.

 

I must applaud them recently, the took on a Insignia with a borked engine and fair play to them, they stuck with it and it was a right shed. Crank was forked and they had all sorts of shite to sort out.

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Much less so nowadays. I bought Practical Classics and one of the Mini magazines fairly regularly, and before that I was utterly addicted to Car. Especially the Bulgin/Bremner/Setright years. Some great articles, great photography, beautifully written with a lot of emphasis on engineering and design rather than dabs of oppo.

 

I had every issue of Car between June 1990 and September 1994, neatly boxed and in perfect Nick. The whole lot went in a skip as in those pre eBay days there wasn’t any sort of market for them. Obviously regret that now

 

My first issue of Car was August 89, had the NSX on the front. Amazing times. 

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I used to get Car until it became just about performance.I used to get Practical Classics until it became stupid.I used to get Car Mechanics until it became boring.And I used to get Classic and Sportscar,and also Classic Cars irregularly,until they became all about money.Also,and I may have mentioned this before,Mick Walsh's face, particularly when smiling,sends me into an irrational fury.

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From the age of 12 in 1976 I bought CAR every month with additional Custom Car and Street Machine as and when pocket money allowed. From 1980 until about 5 years ago I bought everything almost every month.

I must have spent thousands over the years, then went almost cold turkey.

 

Until...

I discovered Readly, a £7.99 per month app. That has pretty much aeverything Autocar, Autoexpress , car, Evo , Octane, MotorSport Classic Car, Classic and Sportscar, Top Gear Land Rover mags, Porsche mags, weekly Classic comics, etc etc. Plus all the Yank stuff and they seem to have a specialist title for almost every model ever made.

You can have 5 different devices attached so other family members can read Women's Weekly or Horse and Hound or whatever.

 

It alerts you when a new issue from your chosen genre is available and it's got a couple of years of back issues.

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Gonna buck the trend and say I love Practical Classics, it's the only reason I know about this place (thanks Sam Glover), although admittedly it's my dad's subscription so I get them all about a month behind... Yeah the odd typo but more than balanced out by the interesting pieces.

 

My wife just bought me 6 months' MG Enthusiast as a birthday present and I'm quite enjoying that too, bit more niche obviously but good stuff.

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I’ve got PC on subscription, I still find a fair bit of interest in that tbh, plus it’s still got some practical style stuff in it which is always interesting. Lots of ‘normal’ classics in it too.

 

Other than that I occasionally pick up a Classic American or Classic Ford. Classic American is usually a good read but Classic Ford I can find very repetitive and gets a bit boy racer for my tastes. Still some nice stuff in it now and then though.

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I used to get Car until it became just about performance.I used to get Practical Classics until it became stupid.I used to get Car Mechanics until it became boring.And I used to get Classic and Sportscar,and also Classic Cars irregularly,until they became all about money.Also,and I may have mentioned this before,Mick Walsh's face, particularly when smiling,sends me into an irrational fury.

I'm not saying PC is stupid now, although it was for a while.The other moans still stand.I went off CM slowly,it became more boring and also started including what appeared very like advertorial,some of it for stuff that looked like snake oil.One issue puffed one of those ridiculous electrolysis devices,which cost the gullible buyers £500 a go, with fitting on top of that.It got a full colour 5 page article,which was a bit shameful.

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Nah.

 

Occasionally I'l treat myself to a LRO, Classic Bike or Scootering if Im going away on holiday or something. But mostly Nahh.

 

I used to read Car Mechanics and PC. But they just got very "samey" And I'd rather put that money that I spend on them in the "Wombles New Moped" jar

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