Letters From Readers - Critical of Criticism, March 1975

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Sir,

Having read your magazine now for approximately ten years, I regret to say that the quality of letters published has decreased alarmingly over the past year. Do you now only receive letters extolling or decrying the standard of various cars, both British and foreign, owned by the writers ?

We have been subjected to pages of script praising or denigrating various cars, the latest examples of which are no doubt only too fresh in many readers’ memories. My comments on a small selection of them are as follows :

To the owner of the perfect TR6: Pray to your god that your good fortune holds; you are one of the few.

To the owner of the 50-m.p.g. Citroen: If you’re happy with your blancmange on castors, good luck to you, but I wouldn’t attempt to drive it at 70 m.p.h. in any wind unless the road was clear and a hundred yards wide.

To the owner of the 50,000-mile etc. 1972 Escort: While I appreciate Ford power units, it would be nice if they could achieve better results when building the bodies which at times have the most strange contours, that are never shown in their publicity pictures.

To the owner of the GLS Hunter: To get from 0 to 60 m.p.h. in less than 10 seconds is to be expected from this type of engine, but if you honestly believe the rest you have written then you really should not be driving because something is sadly wrong with your eyesight.

To the MG-C eulogist: If you fear that most of these cars might disappear within the ten years Mr. Willmer thinks should elapse before a register is formed, then I think you rather tend to prove the point that there is little to commend this vehicle.

Turning to other more interesting parts of your magazine, namely the article on fast cornering, I was reminded of an excellent book written in the late 1950s by Piero Taruffi called The Technique of Motor Racing, which despite its title devotes most of its pages to the art of cornering, going into great detail with many graphs and diagrams. It is well written, extremely interesting and also contains many excellent comparative race pictures demonstrating points which he makes in the text. I commend it to you and to anybody interested in motor-racing techniques. Also there is a lot for the ordinary motorist to learn about driving, because whether driving a racing car or a family saloon there is a right and wrong way to drive round corners and bends.

Hatfield Peverel, G. K. TIBBENHAM
Essex

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