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Think muscle cars and I instinctively think of Yank tanks, big Aussie V8s and sports cars like Cobras, Lamborghinis, Ferraris and the like. So it came as a bit of a surprise when I opened up a just-released book entitled “Muscle Car Mania which featured EH Holdens on the cover and 6-cylinder Falcons at Phillip Island on the inside,

Strange title for a strange book, I thought, but then the further I got into it, the more I began to enjoy this 180 page offering from Chevron.

There are more than 50 chapters in the book (well, they’re not so much chapters as snippets) that take the reader through a fabulous photographic journey that encompasses motor racing, Round Australia trials, speedway, stock cars, road tests, movies, Bathurst crashes, hot rodding and much, much more.

Captions for each photograph are limited, but there is enough “meat” in the chapter comments to please the reader. Did you know, for instance, that “Motor” magazine road tested a Phase 5 Falcon GTHO which they had readers believe was to be a production Ford model, that Peter Brock reckoned the 1979 Repco Round Australia Trial (which he won) was the highlight of his career, and not one of his numerous Bathurst wins?

The further you get into the book, the more curved-ball chapters get thrown at you, complete with an outstanding selection of (mostly previously unseen) photos straight out of the archives, and even if you fail to read the text, the photos will keep you amused for hours.

Author James Cockington, obviously a Peter Brock fan, opens the book with a shot of Brock’s Holden 179-powered Austin A30, and closes it with a nice tribute to Peter Perfect himself.

It’s hard to dislike this book, except for the fact that the title seems a little out of whack in relation to the contents. But that shouldn’t stop you from going out and buying it. It’s a great read, pictorially brilliant and one that this reviewer found hard to put down.

Muscle Car Mania – legendary Australian motor stories.
Rockpool Publishing
ISBN 9781921878657


Available from all major book stores for $29.99 or online at www.rockpoolpublishing.com.au


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