Another month, another issue of NZV8, but we’re always trying to improve on the last and we really think we’ve got a winner here. If we themed our issues, the last one would probably have been ‘blue feature cars’, while NZV8 Issue No. 130 would unquestionably be ‘quality’. Enough waffling though, let’s get straight to it.

The cover car is billed as ‘world class’ on the cover, and that’s a statement we’d be willing to stand by 100 per cent. It is quite possibly New Zealand’s best Camaro, and if the tangible aspects of a build — quality, functionality, presentation, and finish — count for anything, it probably is the best. The work that has gone into making this car a proper grand tourer is absolutely staggering, and if you had to choose any vehicle in which to transport four adults across a continent in the utmost style, comfort, and speed, this is the car. Yes, it’s well beyond the reach of mere mortals like us, but please believe us when we say it is the best-built car we have ever featured. You can see a behind-the-scenes build gallery here, or give the full, nine-page story a read in the latest issue. 

Just as worthy of being a cover car is Jason Sellars’ insane Ford Falcon XY drag ute. It’s almost the working man’s equivalent to the Camaro. Jason always wanted a back-halved XY ute, and you can’t deny that he’s got one, and then some. Nearly the entire ute was built by Jason over a 10-year period, and the quality of workmanship that has gone into it — at the hands of just one incredibly talented man — is absolutely mind-blowing. He’s also running a twin-turbo Clevo with a grout-filled stock block and factory cast heads, and has already run an 8.22 on a test run. We’re expecting big things from this ute; but even if it didn’t run at all, we’d be more than happy to drool over it every day. 

Following up on the incredibly built race vehicles, how about Brett Pearce’s beautiful ’68 Monaro HK GTS race car? With a Marsh Motorsport–built 406ci small block pumping out over 600hp, and a Jerico four-speed dogbox, she’s a tough old girl underneath, but it’s what you can see that’ll really get you. The bodywork is absolutely flawless, especially for a race vehicle, and you should see how well-detailed and presented the interior is. Seeing the level of care that has been put into this car really makes you wonder what would happen if Brett was ever to decide upon building a show car. 

It’s not all fast cars and glamour, though — we’ve got your monthly dose of death, destruction, and chaos (distilled) in the form of Aaron Carson’s iconic ‘Tumblin’ Dice’ T-bucket. This car is world famous in the New Zealand hot rodding scene, and while the principle behind its build was a rough-as-guts, adrenaline-pumping, old-school hot rod, the quality with which it has been done takes it far beyond what Aaron probably ever envisaged. What makes it even cooler is that, as loud, scary, and totally rubbish it must be to drive, Aaron does so anyway, and there’s no doubt that he has an absolute blast every single time. 

If driving in style and comfort is more for you, look no further than Kim Macauley’s smooth ’56 Chev hardtop. Having been granted permission by the better half to purchase this ’56, on the proviso that it be fully restored before she ever set foot in it, Kim got to work building it into the elegant cruiser of his dreams. 

Heading into the tail end of summer, we’ve been lucky enough to have access to some truly great events, and this issue contains coverage of a fair few of them. Muscle Car Madness is sort of like Beach Hop’s bogan South Island cousin, and is always a good time. We’ve got the madness covered in an event report complete with a gallery of all the shenanigans that make this one of the country’s most fun automotive events. 

Up in the North Island, we were at the Kumeu Classic Car and Hot Rod Festival, and with the immense number of vehicles in attendance, this was not a show to miss. The size of the show meant we’ve got coverage both in the current issue and online, with a decent-sized photo gallery to be found here

We’ve also got coverage of the Rock FM Nitro Shootout; a top-tier drag meeting headlined by the big guns — the Top Fuel dragsters of Fish Family Racing and Marsh Motorsport — going head-to-head. Of course, this was also a competition meeting, promising a full day of drag racing action, and you can check it all out in the latest issue. We’ve also got a highlight reel and a massive photo gallery, which you can view here

And, kicking off the new year was the Central Muscle Car series roaring through the country’s southernmost racetrack: Teretonga. The racing was hectic, as both Teretonga and CMC is known for, making for some really full-on action.

We also get a closer look at the innards of a Top Fuel dragster. Following last issue’s dissection of the Marsh Motorsport Top Fuel engine, this time around we got a close-up look at Reece Fish’s Top Fuel dragster to see exactly what it takes to control 8000hp, and how to put it all to the ground. 

We also managed to catch up with Peter Ellmers from Mothers Car Care, to grill him about the SEMA experience. Peter is a member of a panel of judges who are tasked with the arduous, but rewarding, duty of analyzing the cars of SEMA in search of the year’s winner of the coveted Mothers Shine Award. Have a read of the interview if you want to find out more about the process. 

There’s also a shed in the lower North Island that we were fortunate enough to get a closer look at, although to call it a ‘shed’ is probably a bit of an insult. Based within an old shoe factory, the Dudsons’ immense collection is absolutely awe-inspiring, and we can only hope we’ve done it justice in our coverage of it. 

Of course, there’s all this and more crammed into the latest issue of NZV8, so pop down to your local and grab a copy (or pick one up from our online store below — we’re stoked with how this issue came out, and we hope you will be too.