Road & Track - 2005 Magazines

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Cover Story - Mustang Stampede! (From the petting zoo V-6 convertible to the ornery GT-R Concept, a 2005 Mustang is a thing to behold...and drive. We test six variants, including Shelby's blast from the past, the G.T.500E. * Mustang V-6 Convertible * Mustang GT Coupe * Saleen S281 3-Valve * Steeda Q * Mustang GT-R Concept * Shelby G.T.500E "Eleanor") Road Tests - Audi A6 3.2 Quattro (If you can get past the deep abyss that is the new A6's grille, you'll find there is a lot to like about Ingolstadt's latest, including a noticeably roomier interior and substantially stronger V-6); Zamboni 500 (Hockey players the world over, flash a gap-toothed smile and salute the humble Zamboni, iec-resurfacer extraordinaire. It's as much a part of the game as a hearty high-stick to the face) First Drives - BMW 3 Series (BMW's major breadwinner outdoes its former self (no mean feat) with crisp styling that avoids the excesses of the 7 Series and Z4, sublime handling and potent new inline-6 engines); Volkswagen Jetta (Shedding its "Golf-with-a-trunk" persona once and for all, the new Jetta is larger, more luxuriously appointed and has an unusual base powertrain - ain inline-5 mated to a 6-speed auto) Features - From The Ralph Lauren Collection (Like choosing between Van Gogh and Renoir: Famous drivers and celebrities weigh in on their favorite car from Lauren's "Speed, Style And Beauty" exhibit at Boston's Museum of Fine Arts); Long-Term Test: Cadillac CTS-V (Imagine a '57 Eldorado hustled through teh Nurburgring's Karussell. Don't see it? Yet Cadillac's Corvette-engined CTS-V has seen thousands of laps there, and the development shows) Competition - Rookie Stripes (School is in session, and the final exam is taking an IRL car flat-out around Homestead's 1.5-mile oval. The telemetry tells no lies, and Derek Hill passes with high marks (i.e., throttle pinned)) Technical - Seeing The Light (Where will out automotive photons come from in five or 10 years? Well, the clock is ticking on the incandescent bulb. The safe bet? High-intensity-discharge (HID) or LED light sources) Columns - On The Road: Miscellaneous Ramblings (Our editorial package this month is our usual whirlwind of diversity - our Mustang cover story, prime examples of Ralph Lauren's incredible car collection, and Sam Posey's insightful driver rankings); Ampersand: The Next Big Thing (Jag's Advanced Lightweight Coupe protends the next XK8; captains of industry weigh in on trends at Detroit and Los Angeles; and a Saleen S7 variant that could huff, puff and blow your doors off); Side Glances: Our Old Pal, The Prince Of Darkness (After all these years, shouldn't Lucas be crowned King of Darkness? Not necessarily, claims our Wisconsinite Editor-at-Large, who finds the silver lining in the simplicity and repairability of said components); Tech Tidbits: No Wonder They Call It "Grand Touring" (TIme spent behind the amply-sized wheel of a 1939 Mercedes-Benz 540K proves memorable; classes in automotive restoration prove educational. Plus, buffering - it's not just for aspirin anymore); Sport: Formula 1's Top 10 Drivers (Sam Posey picks on Formula 1's standouts in 2004. Okay, the No. 1 spot is a gimme (hint: M. Sch_m_ch_r) but the suspense mounts as Posey descends through the talent-packed field); Pole Position: Youth Must Be Served (As if pre-programmed from the womb, drivers are reaching greater heights of success at an increasingly early age. Cases in point: The current crop of F1 up-and-comers and Team 16 (as in "years old") at Daytona) Departments - People, Places & Things; Your Turn; Reviews; Time & Place; Technical Correspondence; Road Test Summary; Finish Line; PS

Cover Story - Topless Exotics (Forget tousling your hair; these four will pull it out by the roots. Aston Martin DB9 Volante, Ferrari F430 Spider, Lamborghini Murcietago and Pagani Zonda Roadster) Road Tests - Mitsubishi Eclipse GT (With Mitsubishi's livelihood teetering in the balance, the '06 Eclipse seems a make-or-break proposition. Chalk one up in the 'make' column, with its gutsy 263-bhp V-6 and updated second-gen styling); Morgan Aero 8 (If 'high-tech anachronism' seems like a contradiction in terms, well...we'd like to show you rolling proof-of-concept from Malvern Link - with the author's 1965 Plus Four along for perspective); BMW 545l, Infiniti M45 Sport, Lexus GS 430 (Long the all-pwerful diva of the midsize sports-sedan class, the BMW 5 Series of late has all the job security of Whitney Houston. The reason? Star-quality competitors from Infiniti and Lexus); Mercedes-Benz CLS500 (It's said that clothes make the man...with the corollary that sheet-metal curves make the curve. And so it is that Mercedes is testing the waters with a snappily dressed E-Class called the CLS500) First Drives - Land Rover Range Rover Sport (Marlin Perkins - remember him from Mutual of Omaha's Wild Kingdom? - would have loved this. But instead of outpacing a charging rhino, this Rover will leave a few so-called sports sedans for dead); BMW 5 Series With xDrive (Off-camber slippery curves? Temperatures that would ice over a Finnish sauna? These BMW sedans (and now, a wagon) scoff at Old Man Winter with sophisticated all-wheel drive first used on X3) Features - Used Car Classic: BMW 23, 1996-2002 (Miss Moneypenny would approve of the Z3, the most parsimonious of the Bond cars. They're affordable, sweet-handling and come in an incredible variety from 138-bhp ragtop to 315-bhp coupe); Classic GTs, Contrtasted: Ferrari Dino & Porsche 911 (Peering into the sould of two watershed GTs or decidedly different characters, through the eyes of renowned designer Freeman Thomas. Who just happens to own and cherish an example of each); James Dean's Last Race ('Too fast to live, too young to die, bye bye' goes The Eagles tribute. But Dean lived his short life to the fullest, seeing his competitors grow smaller in his Porsche's mirrors); Long-Term Test: Nissan 350Z Touring (Our year of living dangerous-Z...a truly bad pun for a most excellent sports car that was problematic at first (a crunching gearbox and a toasted clutch) but generated miles of smiles afterwards); Coming Within An Inch Of Disaster (A mere 25.4 mm seperated the author's Porsche Cayenne Turbo from becoming a pricey hunk of German scrap metal. Thankfully, he lived to tell the tale of a first-time raid on Pikes Peak) Technical - Eternal Combustion (Don't write the obituary just yet. Clean petroleum - and bio-derived fuel, hybrids increasingly efficient catalysts and direct-injection strategies breathe new life into internal combustion) Competition - 12 Hours Of Sebring (GT1 was a hard day's night for the C6-Rs at Sebring. What used to be a Corvette benefit race was won this year by Aston's DBR9, with Maserati's MC12 as a colorful, controversial backdrop) Columns - On The Road: 10 Years Of Gratitude (One decade and counting for Bill Wagner's magnificent Amelia Island Concours d'Elegance; Remembering Bill Devin; and a very worthwhile update of a benchmark book on racing, Robert Daley's The Cruel Sport); Ampersand: New York International Auto Show (Thunderous horsepower and applause from the Big Apple's annual event, headlined by the Shelby Cobra GT500 and Dodge Charger SRT-8. Also, Porsche's tin-topped Boxster, the Cayman; Toyota's Supra); Side Glances: Rebirth Of The Car Worth Having (As quandries go, it's a pleasant one. Buy the forlorn classic that needs thousands of dollars or restoration work or it's modern equivalent that's appealing, cost-effective and chock-full of convenience? Hmmm); Sport: The IRL Goes Road Racing (Tim Tuttle reports on the IRL's first right turns in 10 years with Andretti Green finishing 1-2-3-4 on the streets of St. Pete. Wheldon's the winner, followed by Kanaan, Franchitti and Herta); Pole Position And The Winner Is... (Ponder this, Grasshopper. In the last half-century, who has had the most significant impact on auto racing in America? (Hints. For Joe's pick: ultralight pilot, John Player sponsored, son raced F1 in the '90s); Tech Tidbits: Wheeling To 800 KM/H (If that land-speed record car is wheel-driven, then I've got a prime parcel of Everglades property for you. Plus, torpedo-shaped record cars, circa 1899, and hot-wiring Morgans for fun and profit) Departments - People, Places & Things; Your Turn; Technical Correspondence; Road Test Summary; Reviews; Finish Line; Time & Place; PS