Vintage is in something fierce. You can blame the cliche and assign Mad Men all you want. But vintage is deeper than that. A stretch of tough times and the “planned obsolescence” of today has refocused our attention to history even more than ever. New doesn’t always equate to better and some things really don’t work like they used to. The Collector, a new Octane series in partnership with the classic car experts at Petrolicious, acknowledges the automotive gems of yesteryear that have gone overlooked for one reason or another. As a series, the selections we’ll share stand as both a group of savvy buys we’d base our personal car collection around and as a source of inspiration for life in the wake of ownership.
Drive French, look French, eat cheese
The Citroën DS automatically imputes coolness of a high order in a way a vintage Ferrari can’t. You’re somehow instantly scholarly, erudite and a wildman in the bedroom. Why is that? Well, the DS coveted in the same way the 1st edition of a classic novel is. The car isn’t deemed exotic, sporty or sexy in any conventional manner, but it’s no less desirable by virtue of its specialness. And that’s what the DS has in droves. For its time, it was the future of automobiles and it drove like nothing else.
Some MMasterful, All MMagnificent
Over the decades, BMW’s iconic M3 has only grown in power, performance (and in most cases, weight), going from niche sports sedans to one of the most popular performance-focused automobiles in the industry. The best part? There are five generations of them, all with scintillating, unique details and the underlying similarities of greatness.
The slightly slick track at Wisconsin’s Road America has me wondering just how little effort it would take to spin the 425 hp German monster I’m driving. The truth is that the M4 I’m helming isn’t working nearly as hard as it can with its 425 hp (and more importantly) its 406 lb-ft of torque and shaved corpulence. 174 pounds. That’s the equivalent weight of two average male German Shepherds drooling on your fine leather sport seats and the same amount of poundage the new 2-door M4 has dropped over the M3 Coupe it replaces. But the all-new BMW M3 and M4 are so much more than more power and less fat.
A look at Porsche's journey to Le Mans
The biggest story behind this year’s running of Le Mans was no doubt the return of Porsche, who have been absent from the race’s top class for 16 years. The storied automaker teamed up with Michelin to create “We Are Racers”, a series of short films documenting the company’s 2014 journey to Le Mans.
Does this weight make me look fat?
From The Archives: Though the newer cars might be faster, safer and better appointed, they certainly don’t feel more agile or connected to the driver. In the name of technology, most sports sedans have lost a purity that once existed across the segment. And there’s virtually no end in sight.
Keeping the good times always close at hand
Today we’re happy reintroduce our guide to the 50 Best Festivals in America in the form of a handy, downloadable eBook (PDF) that’s been revamped with even more photography, insight and trivia than before. It’s a ready-to-go handbook for your iOS, Android or Kindle device — never out of reach the next time the road comes calling. Oh, and it’s free. Download it here.
What's New, Now
Today in gear: A smart propane tank, a sports smartwatch, the Nike Lunar Trainer 1, and more.
Introducing ComforPedic iQ™, the world’s first and only mattress to combine Ultra Cool™ Memory Foam with the revolutionary, patented Smart Response™ Technology. Sixteen internal chambers work together to naturally and continuously adapt to your body’s every position—all without motors or electronics.
The Week's Best Writing
Our best articles from the last few weeks. Just in case, ya know, you missed them.
This Week in Gear: Mercedes-Benz’s insane S-Class, Aston Martin’s new V12 roadster, retro-inspired Club Monaco Sunglasses, minimalist wallets, rocket skates, DeWalt toolboxes and much, much more.
Finding the right underground supper club
What are underground supper clubs and how do you get an “in”? Our guide has all the info you need.
What to see, read and hear
This Week in Culture: An interview with Weird Al, a day in the life of an NYC cabbie, a retrospective on Illmatic, the daily routines of history’s greatest minds and more.
Highly Alcoholic, Highly Worthwhile
After years of global vilification and false stigma, absinthe is making a comeback. We tasted six new American versions.
a trojan horse of meat, cheese and fat masquerading as a salad
Preparing duck confit is a quick way to tell everyone you know your way around the kitchen, and an even quicker way to put on a few pounds. It was developed by the French, and mastered by Chef Peter Droste. Here is his take on the classic cooking style.
Underground supper clubs, where strangers eat home-cooked meals made by professional chefs, are spreading throughout America. Gear Patrol sat down at one in Brooklyn, New York to see firsthand where the trend’s headed.