Automobile Year No34 (1986/1987)

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Automobile Year No34 (1986/1987) edited by Jean-Rodolphe Piccard. 255 pp. 12 1/2 9 1/4. (Motor Racing Publications Ltd, Unit 6, The Paton Estate, 46 Pitlake, Croydon, Surrey CRO 3RY. £19.95)

In spite of the death of the famous founder of this ace of huge-format motoring annuals, Ami Guichard, the Edipresse Publishing Group of Lausanne has worked hard in collaboration with MRP in this country, to continue Automobile Year into its 34th edition, and they tell us the 35th issue is already being prepared.

Automobile Year encouraged innumerable other annuals about motor racing and cars in general, in the same lavish format, yet it remains one of the best, with fine colour and black-and-white picture coverage of F1 and other competitive events of the past year, and leading articles on the world motoring scene. This year’s edition embraces such subjects as the discord in Europe over battles for car sales, important new models, how ABS braking was born and evolved, and an article by Michael Scarlett on the formidable new Jaguar.

This, and the high-class advertising which is a complementary part of the big volume, is followed by reviews of racing from F1 to F3000, including the Indianapolis 500 and Le Mans, sports-car and touring car championships, rally championships, hill-climbing and autocross, by writers of the calibre of Mike Doodson, Michael Cotton, Martin Holmes, and their Continental colleagues. The book concludes with detailed, tabulated results of the important 1986 events.

It is good to learn that this long-lived reportage, of which early copies and complete runs are now collectors’ territory, has not gone up in price. Long may it commemorate the work of its founder. WB