By on September 2, 2008

Today I got this month’s issue of Octane in the mail. What a delight. While the American car magazine landscape is severely lacking in depth, compelling articles, witty writing, and pornographic photography (save 0-60), the Brits are not. I subscribe to Octane and CAR because I’m still excited to see them waiting for me in the mailbox. In many ways, internet just kills print media: in the speed with which it can bring you information, the opportunities for writers to be candid (the result of lower overheard – and lower salaries), and the sheer volume of information and pictures we can include without too much added cost. But there’s still something very special about holding great photography in your hand, from a glossy sheet of paper that’s not out of your printer. Octane is, on the most basic level, just car porn. In addition to the stunning full spreads, they write about cars that aren’t made anymore, dream cars, and talk about the “pre-war” era as though it was the 1980s. Aston Martin mentioned they might revive the Lagonda name today. Months ago, Octane recommended buying a Lagonda if you felt pre-war Bentleys were all too common. Which is, of course, what has always held me back from buying one.

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10 Comments on “Daily Podcast: Still Excited at the Mailbox...”

  • avatar

    Oh, how I love those… I have a couple of hundreds of them. “Thoroughbred & Classic Cars” and “Classics and Sportscar”. Thick, fat, lot of history, lots of info. And you never get tired of them, there’s always an article you missed somewhere. And the ads… Pure porn. I usually scan all the fleamarkets, and they go for perhaps $2 each. And I love the british way of doing things, they had a running competition of “spot the car” and it usually was some obscure car you’ve never heard of. But the fun part was that the prize each month was a bottle of the finest single malt whisky. I mean, you’ve gotta love them…

  • avatar


    As one lover of the English sports car, especially from days of yor…
    Have I ever sent you this link?

    They still have it!

    Just a little pricey.

  • avatar

    Why do you keep saying that the Bullitt out-performs the Challenger SRT8?

    Both Edmunds and Car and Driver ran comparisons of the two vehicles and the SRT8 won out in all the performance tests.

    Now, with the price difference, the Bullitt may be a better value but it in no way “blows away” the SRT8 in performance.

    Really, I don’t understand why everyone compares the SRT8 to the Bullitt anyway. It seems to me that the R/T competes with the Bullitt while the SRT8 goes against the GT500.

  • avatar
    Jonny Lieberman

    Ajla: Here’s why.

    That’s a pre-production SRT8.

    Here’s the results of the production (the one you can buy) SRT

    Notice how it’s slower than the Bullitt?

    For those who don’t feel like clicking:

    April 2008: 0-60 in 5.1 seconds
    August 2008 0-60 in 5.5 seconds.

    But, the REAL reason is that I’ve driven both cars. The Bullitt is worlds better in every way and costs $10,000 less.

  • avatar

    First, it’d be nice if places didn’t test pre-production models against production models in comparison tests. Or, at least they could disclose it somewhere obvious.

    Second, I’ll have to take your word on their comparative performance because you’ve driven them both, but I would still like to see a Bullitt against an SRT8 production model where they share drivers and testing conditions
    to see if the Challenger really can’t beat the Bullitt in instrumented testing. (I’m assuming the C/D test used a pre-production Challenger also?).

    My biggest reason to be skeptical about the 5.5 0-60 and 13.8 quarter mile being “usual” for the Challenger SRT8 is the Grand Cherokee SRT8. It weighs 600lbs more than the Challenger, but I’ve seen published figures of 0-60 5.2 and a 13.5 quarter mile for it. If those Edmunds numbers are correct on average, then I think that makes the Challenger the slowest in the SRT8 family.

  • avatar

    The podcast is still Farago-free? And who’s typing on the keyboard? Sounds like the pitter-patter of a small rodent in the background.

    I think the revival of Lagonda is a rather dumb idea – I totally agree with the point Johnny made about Mercedes and Maybach – luxury + luxury = unnecessary choice.

    And the Challenger? Blah. What a waste. Sad, but not in the same way the Kappa platform has been wasted.

  • avatar

    “pre-war Bentleys were all too common” Yes that has held me back too. That and the lack of ipod connectivity.

  • avatar

    Print media….Yes I still get no less than 7 car magazines each month.

  • avatar

    Ummm, a Grand Cherokee SRT-8 does have AWD which makes a BIG difference when launching from a standing start!

  • avatar


    Well, that’s true, but would AWD alone be able to overcome the weight penalty, and make the Cherokee SRT8 .4 faster than the Challenger in the 1/4 mile?

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