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You are in... Forums > Discuss This > Drives > Alexei Sayle drives a Rover 75 through Spain – CAR archive, Nov 1999)
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Long-time Rover fan Alexei Sayle wanted to see if the 75 lived up to his expectations. So he drove it down to the Spanish border to see an old friend – a tin of pate
I have this very story on my shelf. I´ve re-read it several times since publication.
Ehm....in the light of this and other nice reprints, isn´t it becoming rather pointedly obvious that CAR today lacks something of the diversity it showed as recently as 1999? Bearing in mind the changed market conditions, yes those, but bearing in mind also that the UK is not populated only by replicants with an entirely different set of values than people had only 13 years ago, couldn´t there be just a bit more of this kind of article? Would people really pick up the magazine in Stansted or at a petrol station in Swansea and say, nah, there´s a six page article on page 78 by Iain Banks about how he drives his Alvis to Norway....? I very much doubt it. And I would be prepared to bet one hundred pounds of my own money, payable to Phil McNamara´s charity of choice, that one or two more varied articles like this one by Alexei Sayle would not hurt CAR even remotely. With due respect to the talented guys testing today, their articles are not going to be as interesting in 2024 as these earlier articles are now. All this nine tenths stuff and sideways tomfoolery gets quickly as stale as last week´s football match. Less is more.
Please pass these messages onto Bauer. I suspect the editor would love to do this stuff but that some people in head office won´t sanction it.
I really enjoyed re-reading this. "Authors" like this definitely add colour and texture - i loved the section re Tourette. I also agree that more of the same would enhance the mag. I have an old issue from 1994 with Rowan Atkinson writing on the then new DB7. His comments then were frank and honest at a time when all the usual journos were hyping up the new AM (for good reasons...), and delivered with lovely wry humour. Encore, encore!!
Yeah, why doesnt Car get back contributors like Rowan, Alexi and Stephen Baley, the "Colums" section always used to consist of 4 articles, so surely at least one of them could be persuaded back ?
Rover 75: Guilty pleasure.
Having read this and the LJKS E-type article, it is abundantly clear to me that Car really was so much better 'back in the day'! No rose tinted spectacles are required, merely the honesty to compare the old with the new. Whilst I would ,no doubt, be entertained by regular reprints as some have suggested, what would really hit the spot is some writing of this calibre by the current crop of muttering rotters. Any chance?
If reprints are to be considered, could I suggest one Frontline article a month from, say, twenty years ago? I for one would love to revisit Bishop, Barker, LJKS et al.
Thanks Mr. Sayle. Funny isn't it that I can remember all articles since I started reading CAR when I was 13 at the end of the eighties. It is more than just legroom, performance, etc. It is about life & cars, it goes beyond consumer advice. It's about life with cars and for cars, the engineering, the story behind it all.
@Lanciamug. I am sure the CAR staff are doing their best and have always listened to good and well judged criticism.
It is still the best Magazine out there and no doubt new improvements will be made. By the way Lanciamug, love your taste! Delta Integrale how wonderful that car still is to drive today.
Hi: Thanks for the Rover 75 copy. I´ve made some changes to the original text,hope you don´t mind. I´ve deleted the sections about the pate in La Jonquera. It takes up too much space. Also, the references to the filming are gone too, sorry. And the material about the sandwiches are out. I really wanted to focus the article. Could you re-submit the text with another 450 words on the Rover 75´s handling and performance? If you´re too busy I´ll get one of the staffers to add some technical material. We do enjoy your humour but the article should be primarily about the car rather than the more idiosyncratic personal stuff.
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