We were just talking with a friend about his Volkswagen Touareg V10 TDI. "How on earth did you afford that?" is the highly sanitized version of the question we posed to him. Answer: He bought used, and then explained to us that he would never buy a new car again, no matter what. A decision that's fine by us, but which buff book is our pal going to read if he's unwilling to ever walk into a new car dealership again?
Meet – or re-meet as the case may be – Motor Trend Classic. The fine folks at Motor Trend tried their hand at this classic car thing a few years back in 2005 but were forced to shutter the magazine in 2006. But that was then (and they were trying to sell 12 issues a year. Correction: Motor Trend Classic launched with two issues in 2005 and then went to six issues for 2006). Motor Trend Classic every three months is now.
The cost to entry is a good bit higher than your standard car mag (roughly three times). However, the new magazine is (thankfully) largely free of advertising and it features a unique format and higher quality paper. Hence the high price: $14.95 per issue.
Also of note, Motor Trend will be using this weekend's Amelia Island Concours d'Elegance to relaunch the Classic magazine. In fact, Amelia Island will feature a special "Motor Trend Class" devoted to cars found on the cover of Motor Trend, including the gorgeous streamlined Norman Timbs Special seen above that graced the cover of the October 1948 issue. Pretty nifty.
Norman Timbs Special Headlines First-Ever Class For The Concours
JACKSONVILLE, FL; MARCH 1, 2010 --- The Amelia Island Concours d'Elegance Foundation, Inc. announced today that it will feature a class devoted to Motor Trend cover cars of the past during the 15th annual Amelia Island Concours d'Elegance, March 12-14, 2010. It is believed to be the first time a concours has featured cover cars as a judged class.
The Motor Trend class will include:
• 1948 Norman Timbs Special - October
• 1948 Davis Devin - August
• 1949 Kurtis Sports Car - Issue 1, Volume 1
• 1951 LeSabre - March
• 1953 Hudson Italia Prototype - December
• 1955 Ghia Streamline X "Gilda" - September
• 1955 Flajole Forerunner - September
• 1956 Firebird II Concept Car - April
Motor Trend will use the Amelia weekend to re-launch Motor Trend Classic, a publication devoted to the great cars and automotive designs of the past, according to Matt Stone, the publication's new editor.
Headlining the class will be the Norman Timbs Special. Constructed in the late 40s over a period of about three years, it was the cover car for the October 1949 issue of Motor Trend. General Motors will be displaying the LaSabre, created by their famed auto stylist Harley Earl, along with their futuristic Firebird II Concept vehicle, which took a number of styling queues from the jet designs of the '50s.
"The idea for this class came about when I was talking with Ken Gross about displaying a large shot of the MT cover that featured the Timbs Special, and he suggested doing an entire class of cover cars; I thought that was a great idea," says Amelia Founder and Co-Chairman Bill Warner. "Besides the Timbs car, people will love the Hudson Italia and the Ghia Streamline X Gilda. In future shows, I can see us doing a class for many of the automotive magazines out there from hot rods to muscle cars."
Tickets for the 15th annual Amelia Island Concours d'Elegance are $45 for adults purchased in advance and $50 the day of the show. Students ages 12-18 are $20, and children under 12 are admitted at no charge when accompanied by a paying adult. Event tickets can be ordered in advance at www.ameliaconcours.org or can be purchased at the door.