You might want to get out and about and make the most of summer while it’s still here. If that's your plan, don’t buy the latest issue of NZV8 — it’s jam-packed with top-shelf content that will have you glued to your armchair all day. Or you could just take the mag outside and take part in a summery activity like reading a magazine under the sun.

Spearheading the assault on your summertime freedom is Warren Black’s epic Holden HQ Monaro — quite possibly one of the coolest cars in the country. It’s been built in a similar vein to the amazing top-end builds over in Australia, but this one is not just a show pony. While he’s already won his fair share of trophies, Warren also drives the Monaro on the street, and has blasted nine-second ETs down the 1320. How do you think an 8-71 atop 555ci of big block Chev would sound?

Following the hardcore custom theme, we get under one of the stars of SEMA 2014 — Recoil, built by Ringbrothers. What was once a ’66 Chevelle is now a work of art powered by a supercharged LS7, backed by a beefy Tremec T56 six-speed, and features so much custom work that you’d be hard-pressed to spot a single original ’66 feature.

We’ve got you covered for your dose of old-school cool, too. In 1966, Dodge produced just 208 Coronets equipped with the 426ci Hemi and A-833 four-speed. We were fortunate enough to get one in the studio, and this thing just defines cool — a blacked-out drag weapon that is essentially as it rolled off the production line half a century ago.

We also check out Paul Kelly’s immaculate Pontiac Firebird, built to dominate the competitive ranks of the Central Muscle Cars. With a screaming Nascar engine, arrow-straight bodywork, and the best finish this side of a show car, the car was always going to be a favourite. Another favourite is the juicy ’34 Ford coupe belonging to John Poulton, who has been afflicted with the incurable hot rodding disease for his whole life.   

Of course, it’s not all about the feature cars — we were given the stressful task of attending the Kumeu Classic Car & Hot Rod Festival and the Hibiscus Rodders’ Orewa Beach Festival. We’ve got full coverage of these fantastic summer events, and a healthy spread of photos to make it feel like you were there, even if you couldn’t make it.

We were there when New Zealand history was made at The Rock FM Nitro Shootout, with Anthony Marsh running the country’s first four-second pass, as well as our longstanding AA/FA record being broken, and many PBs being bettered.

Heard of the Burbank Choppers? Hope you said ‘yes’, because they’re only one of the world’s most renowned hot rod clubs — we managed to score an exclusive interview with them, thanks to Aaron Carson from the Auckland-based Scroungers. We talk road trips, toilet techniques, cars, and the Choppers’ upcoming New Zealand trip to the Scroungers’ Hot Rod Blowout 2015.

We also delve into the making of Ken Block’s legendary Hoonicorn — a build that relied on the skill sets of some very talented Kiwis. Take a look into the basic tuning circuits of your typical Holley-style four-barrel carburettor, check out the amazing shed collection of a veteran South Island racer, and get your Central Muscle Cars fix with coverage of round three at the ever-popular Thunder in the Park.

Sound good? Thought so — head out to the shops and pick up a copy for only $9.99, or treat yourself to a subscription at to save yourself a wad of cash.