To reach the 300th milestone in anything is a bit of a landmark, and none more so than to reach the 300th edition of a publication, especially in today’s challenging climate in the world of publishing.
If you’ve been with us for the last 300 issues, you will have seen the American automotive landscape in this country change dramatically – who would have thought, back in 1988, when Classic American was launched, that one day you’d be able to walk into a UK Ford dealership and buy a brand-new right-hand drive Mustang right off the sales floor? Well you can, and we caught up with a couple of lucky readers who’ve done just that!
Likewise, flicking through that first issue, now almost 30 years old, reveals a magazine quite different to the one in your hands today; there are adverts for cigarettes, beer and lots of ‘lifestyle’ features. Back at the end of the Eighties, Classic American was riding the crest of a wave of nostalgia for the Fifties Americana that was sweeping across the UK. Ben E King and Marvin Gaye were in the top 10 and we couldn’t get enough Levis 501 jeans, Zippo lighters or Budweiser beers. TV was awash with adverts for all these products, from Wrigley’s Spearmint gum to Nick Kamen taking off his jeans in a laundrette for Levis!
The features on American football and the ads for Marlborough may have gone, but one thing that has remained is the passion we have for American cars… even those first issues reveal a magazine already wearing its heart on its sleeve; one that loves, lives and breathes American vehicles of every and any type. And that passion remains today! I hope that in this issue, you’ll see the full scope and breadth of that enthusiasm in the sheer variety and volume of feature cars in this very special issue.
Happy 300th Classic American!