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Martin Gurdon

Motoring writer Martin Gurdon’s first car cost 5p, but then it was a present from his dad. He’s since owned about 80 more in various states of dilapidation.

In the 1960s and early 1970s he grew up in a household where bits of car that had started off under a bonnet often ended up on his mother’s kitchen table, and where the luggage for one family holiday included a spare gearbox, which was fitted to the car before they came home.

As the years passed, Martin decided that writing about cars would be more fun than fixing them, so he became a motoring journalist. He’s written for The Independent, The Daily Telegraph, Octane, and Classic Cars magazine, where he spent six years as a columnist. He also writes road tests for the Evening Standard.

He currently owns a 1951 Bristol 401 which doesn’t go, and a 12-year-old Toyota Avensis estate, which is achingly dull but never goes wrong.


“This is a must-read book for anyone who claims to be a car expert and is guaranteed to keep you smiling over every page."


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A fascinating introduction to the timeline of the motor car. How many people know that the first person to be killed by an automobile was mown down by someone speeding at a reckless 4mph in Crystal Palace?

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