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Davy Lewis Davy Lewis 2023 Jaguar F-PACE receives JLR’s new straight-six engines 1 day ago

A new 296bhp 3.0-litre straight-six diesel 300 Sport model has been added to the F-Pace line-up, bringing an extra dose of sportiness to the large SUV range. Gloss black 21-inch alloy wheels are standard, along with an exterior black pack, rear privacy glass and gloss black roof rails. A choice of ten exterior colours are offered, with the inside of the F-Pace 300 Sport uprated thanks to 16-way heated and ventilated electric memory seats, ebony suede cloth upholstery and satin charcoal ash veneers for the dashboard. In addition, there’s ambient lighting with a choice of 30 colours, together with a fixed panoramic roof. The price for the new model is £62,250. Meanwhile, all versions of the F-Pace fitted with the Pivi Pro infotainment system now come with Amazon Alexa for the first time. This also applies to cars already on the roads, with upgrades carried out in an over-the-air software update.

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Votren De Este Votren De Este 1990 Jaguar Sport XJR-15 3 days ago

Very nice and fast car — but totally dangerous 

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Richard Bremner Richard Bremner Restomod by Thornley Kelham Jaguar XK120 Coupe revealed 4 days ago

Old Jaguars have been the objects of recreation, reimagining and updating long before the fashionable world of restomodding emerged. Jaguar C-, D- and E-types have been recreated and upgraded over the decades by companies like Eagle, Lynx, Proteus and others, while the shapely Mk 2 saloon has been reworked by Vicarage and Beacham.

The XK 120, on the other hand, has rarely been the target of a remake despite its obvious beauty and legendary role not only in the evolution of Jaguar but the wider car industry. One reason for that is its cockpit, which is more grotto than generously dimensioned well for human occupation. It’s why a Dutch engineering company once performed a wheelbase and track stretch on an XK 120.

Another way to enlarge the cabin is to completely rework the car, as high-end restorers Thornley Kelham is doing with its Jaguar XK European.

Besides restoring classics to major award winning standards, this Cotswold company has recently launched a highly modified Lancia Aurelia B20 GT called the Outlaw, a nine strong, £400,000 apiece limited edition run that takes 5,000 hours to build. Which gives you an idea of the extent of the work involved. Yet £400,000 will not be enough to buy you their XK, which starts at £550,000. That number will doubtless trigger a couple of thoughts: first, that’s a good five times what you’d pay for one of the best XK 120s out there. And second, you can buy some spectacular new cars for that money. But how often does cold, hard logic dominate the thought processes of car enthusiasts buying cars? Not so often. If you happen to be flush enough to consider buying cars costing six- and seven-figure sums, then this Jaguar might well appeal. Thornley Kelham thinks it can find 25 such enthusiasts.

Much of the XK’s remodeling has been carried out by ex-McLaren Cars designer, Paul Howse, who has aimed for a “more muscular, more assertive” look that he reckons might have emerged from a “Jaguar skunkworks” exercise. Major changes include a lowered roofline, more curvature for the XK 120’s originally rather flat flanks, wider wings for wider wheels and a subtle tidying of the basic shape. Achieving this has meant the creation of an entirely new aluminium shell for the chassis, this process enabling more room to be found within the cockpit, and the provision of a much better driving position too. The chassis itself is the original, but to longer XK 140 dimensions. The interior itself is new while clearly drawing on the look of the original car’s cabin, instruments and controls. Much closer to an original 120 is this new machine’s XK engine, reworked with a narrow-angle C-type cylinder head, an aluminium 3.8-litre block and a lightweight flywheel, its 340bhp driving a five-speed gearbox, a limited slip diff and a 1,150kg target weight. The suspension is extensively redesigned with double wishbones up front and a better-located live rear axle, all four wheels coilover suspended. Which has you wondering how much of dynamic character of the original remains.

Thornley Kelhamco-founder Simon Thornley explains that the idea was to, “Keep the wonder of the original, but with a modern driving experience.” So, something nostalgically beauteous, but usable. There’s no doubting the aesthetic sensitivity of this rebirthing, however, which has produced a car that’s likely to yield a civilised and entertaining old-school drive. Whether you think it’s worth over 5,000 hours and £550,000 is something only an individual can decide. But, it’s individual tastes that make the car business so fascinating.

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Sam Skelton Sam Skelton 1990 Jaguar Sport XJR-15 4 days ago

Will Jaguar produce anything so closely related to a racing car as the XJR-15 again?

Jaguar Racing’s recent victories of the Rome ePrix double-header feel like a return to form for this traditionally motorsport-led company, its domination of both the Italian races harking back to its on-track glory days of the Fifties and Eighties.

Competition has always been central to Jaguar’s DNA, its successes on track eventually filtering down to its road cars. Take the E-type, for example, which was a clear development of the all-conquering D-type or the successful R-brand that was introduced as a result of Jaguar’s achievements in Group C sports car racing. These, though, pale into insignificance compared to the model featured, the XJR-15.

Directly derived from the XJR-9 that won the 1988 LeMans 24 Hours race, not since the XKSS from 1957 had a Jaguar been so closely related to a racing car.

Despite this being Jaguar’s sixth season in Formula E, other than improvements to the I-PACE’s battery, we’ve yet to see Jaguar’s current motorsport campaign have a direct impact on its road cars. An I-PACE using technology adapted from the company’s I-TYPE Formula E racing car could be as exciting as the XJR-15 and the potential to be just as fast. Jaguar’s reasons to be in Formula E remain the same as when it conceived its first racer, the C-type, 71 years ago which is to push the development of its road cars and, even more importantly, sell more of them. So, while it’s doubtful we’ll see anything as closely related to a racing car as the XJR- 15, with Jaguar back to winning again surely it wants to celebrate its latest victories with a suitably exciting road car?

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Andrew Everett Andrew Everett Buyers Guide Jaguar XJC 8 days ago

Very cool styling JAG coupe — like XJS — but more jaguar-designed 

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Christopher Maltin George Harrison’s 1980 Porsche 928S 8 days ago

Dear Mike Pickles,

So pleased to read this article about JUD 800W which reminded me of the happy times I enjoyed with George Harrison in the 1970s.  We shared this car, as we did with our Porsche 911s which had registration numbers YOU4 and YOU5 and there are many stories I could tell you if you would care to get in touch.

I still have my original YOU4 which I am in the middle of restoring, not to the superb extent that you have restored the 928, but enough so that the DVLA  will allow me to transfer the registration number YOU4 and return it to the Porsche 904 where I feel it rightfully  belongs.

Do send me an email if you are able, but I will apologise in advance for what will is likely to be a tardy response as I am desperately busy at the moment, having recently designed and built the world’s first biomethane fuelled tram, and now trying to convince our wonderful government that this is the most environmentally friendly transport system.  It was our love of the environment and the desire to protect it which brought us together and made us firm friends, long before others had made reference to climate change and the appalling air quality in our urban areas.

With best wishes,

Chris Maltin 

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Dave B. Tesla-powered 392bhp 1996 BMW 840Ci E31 8 days ago

Do you have an estimate on the total cost of the conversion? Cost of parts and amount of labor?

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Ian Cooling Ian Cooling Aaron Lewis – Jaguar XJ13 Replica 10 days ago

Like original sports racer!

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Jonnie Kent 1966 Fletcher-Ogle 1300GT 11 days ago

how interesting. Did he race or rally it? I have a couple of photos of it looking rather sad at some point in history. 

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Chris Rees Chris Rees 1962 Lancia Flaminia Coupé 2.5 3B vs. 1964 Alfa Romeo 2600 Sprint Coupe Series 106.02, 1966 Fiat 230 12 days ago

BRAKING BAD

Owning an Alfa Romeo 2600 Sprint, I thoroughly enjoyed reading the article about the model. My car is a 1964 model that, according to the Certificato di Origine, came off the production line on 8 April 1964 and was delivered to the UK on the 16th of that month (the chassis number being AR 854154). My car has disc brakes on all four wheels, as have all models thereafter. There was no official ‘Mark Two’ but several changes were introduced after my car was manufactured. For example, mine has singlepiece alloy bumpers, whereas the tested car has the later three-piece items, also the dashboard has a ‘grab handle’ on the passenger side whereas earlier cars, such as mine, do not. Also the door handles are different. All of which suggests that the car tested was a late 1964 edition which therefore should have disc brakes all round. I hope you don't consider the above to be too petty, but if the tested car does have drum rear brakes, then it is a bit of a mystery. As I stated above, I thoroughly enjoyed the article and certainly agree with the comment regarding being happier on an autostrada than twisty roads. To cope with this, I have electric power steering fitted which, whilst not standard, has transformed the driving experience.

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Marc Cal 1961 ADO 34 - Mini-based sports car 13 days ago

The pretty exterior of the Farina-styled ADO 34 would have also been suitable for a MG Mini saloon in place of the Riley Elf/Wolseley Hornet, it likely would have had significantly more commercial success too in addition to helping atomise the costs of ADO 34.

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Patrick McGrath Patrick McGrath Tesla-powered 392bhp 1996 BMW 840Ci E31 19 days ago

Electric Classics - I am reluctant in welcoming the electric car revolution and I’ve been pondering what it might mean for all the petrol-powered classic cars in the world. Your article on the E31 8 Series powered by a Tesla motor was a welcome surprise, it shows that converting classic BMWs to electricity can be undertaken sympathetically and gives me hope for the future – perhaps classics can be given a new lease of life with electric power? I especially liked the way the charging port was hidden in the original exhaust on that car – what a great touch!

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James Elliott James Elliott BMW acquires Alpina 19 days ago

I’ve been musing recently about what the future holds for smaller, shall we say more boutique car manufacturers in the face of everincreasing electrification. I’m thinking of brands like Atom, Caterham, Morgan and the like. What might their products look like, and will legislation create pockets within which they can thrive, or at a basic level even survive?

Most specifically I wondered what all this would mean for my favourite brand of all, Alpina. Before I managed to put pen to paper, or fingertip to keys, I read in the news that BMW had actually bought Alpina, or more specifically the branding rights (no shares were actually sold). I’ll be honest my heart sank, and despite trying to find positive angles about the ‘sale’ it’s not recovered since.

My childhood dream car, whilst on my early morning paper round, was an E36 B8 4.6 convertible. Most people would dream of an F40 or Diablo, but not me – that was where I set my sights. Sadly, that is a target I have missed ever since but at the tender age of 20 I did find an E28 B9 3.5, which turned out to be one of the UK press cars no less, advertised in the Dordogne region of France.

Like Bob, Elliott shares his thoughts about the future of Alpina.

Elliott morns the end of an era at Alpina...

Detail was completely lacking; the photographs were laughable but nevertheless I booked one-way flights for myself and my good friend, Justin, to get over there and try to get the car back home. The test drive consisted of our expat seller driving the car, fitted with two seats only as the rear seats were in the boot, down some French country lanes, ‘three up’ at over 100mph! The adrenalin was pumping. I was smitten, Justin in the back was very nearly sick. I paid. The car was mine. We had an eventful but never to be forgotten road trip back to Blighty full of incidents and funny moments and I’ve been hooked on the brand ever since. I adore the quietly spoken nature of the brand, the depth of engineering, the audacity to take what was once the ultimate driving machine and make it more focussed, and better. Of course, in more recent times BMW’s M division has taken the M product in an ever more extreme direction so Alpinas have become re-purposed for a slightly different market, but in so many respects they have emerged as better road cars for it.

This is a brand that means something, that is more than marketing bluster and Instagram likes, mainly because Alpina does not really market itself – it lets its products do the talking.

Don’t get me wrong, I am not against larger corporate entities investing in smaller ones and giving them the financial firepower to do what they do best, and in some respects, you could argue that is, to some degree what the special relationship forged between BMW and Burkhard Bovensiepen over 50-years ago could be perceived to have been, but I don’t see BMW’s acquisition as that. This isn’t about giving Alpina the wherewithal to do what they do but even better.

Alpina will stop making cars at its Buchloe base in three short years and then what? Will Alpina just become another trim level for the mothership, or will BMW create a whole new range of vehicles under the Alpina brand? One thing is for sure though, BMW is a business that is all about chasing volume and Alpina has never been about that so we can expect a very different sort of Alpina to emerge.

It feels like a sad way to end Alpina’s story under the custodianship of the Bovensiepen family. The engineering knowledge and skills of the team at Buchloe were, still are, first class but I suspect those skills won’t be hanging around to become the plaything of a corporate behemoth. I could have seen a situation where Alpina was to BMW owners what Singer is to the well-heeled customer base of Porsche, an expert reengineering company for connoisseur clients. Re-positioned in this way there could have been a renewed purpose and a bright new future but instead who knows what will happen, but it’s definitely the end of an era, electrification has claimed a casualty that is dear to my heart.

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Bob Harper Bob Harper BMW acquires Alpina 19 days ago

We hopes Alpina will continue to exist as a separate brand

There’s been a lot of weeping and wailing in my social media feeds of late and I’m not just talking about the global situation where it looks like we’re all going to be heading to hell in a handcart. No, amongst the important stuff there’s been a thread of concern about BMW’s purchase of Alpina with many wondering what will become of the Buchloe-based concern. It seems that many are worried that the absorption of Alpina into the BMW portfolio will inevitably lead to a dilution of the Alpina brand and the spectre of seeing a 2 Series Gran Coupé ‘Alpina Edition’ is, indeed, a worrying one.

Bob cogitates what the future will hold for Alpina.

Many argue that BMW already has form for this and point to the dilution of the M brand with virtually every model in the range now available to buy slathered in M badges, but personally I think this is unlikely to happen with Alpina. The bottom line is that Alpina is a very small niche within the BMW world and while it produces superb cars and has afforded me a huge number of great drives over the years the name just doesn’t have a broad appeal. Sure, among our aficionado niche of the BMW world we may all be familiar with the Alpina name, but in a wider context there are a huge number of folk who just aren’t aware of the company. You have to remember that Alpina made 2,000 cars in 2021… BMW sold 2.2 million.

In global terms these days 2,000 cars a year just isn’t going to cut the mustard. In order to be competitive you have to produce 50 or a hundred machines and charge several million Dollars, Euros or Pounds for each one or churn them out by the million. There just isn’t any room for anyone to occupy the middle ground – virtually every small manufacturer left is part of a much bigger conglomerate.

In truth BMW and Alpina have been very closely linked for a number of years, indeed the majority of Alpinas are now built on the BMW factory line with a small amount of finishing done at Buchloe. As far as I’m aware Alpina has been doing plenty of work and development for BMW for a number of years in its state of the art research and development centre so there are already plenty of ties binding the companies together. Historically there has been much discussion between the two companies about power and torque outputs and performance figures, with BMW M beating the Alpina in one regard while the Alpina might eclipse the M car in another, all in a carefully choreographed Top Trumps contest.

My hope is that Alpina and BMW will continue to coexist as more or less separate brands with their own closely linked, but still separate identities. It has been becoming harder and harder for Alpina to continue this thanks to the virtual elimination of the normally-aspirated engine where its traditional skill sets and techniques would previously have been able to shine. Where Alpina has more than made up for this is in its chassis prowess which really has been second to none in recent years, often putting the equivalent BMW product to shame.

While we’re unlikely to see any more of Alpina’s wilder creations such as the glorious B8, an E36 3 Series with a 4.6-litre V8 under its bonnet, anymore, I do hope that BMW will continue with machinery like the B5 Touring as it’s a model for which there’s no direct BMW competitor. Time will tell I guess, but I’m not going to be losing sleep over the possibility of Alpina-badged 2 Series Active Tourers and can only hope that BMW will keep the Alpina brand flying high for those who value something just a little bit different in our increasingly homogenised world.

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Ron Tipton Vincent Hugo Bendix 1881-1945 - Financially volatile hero of braking and sponsor of aviation 19 days ago

Interesting Bio....Despitr his poor managing skills he was an amazing man.  I live in Owensboro, KY where the FA Ames Automobiles and later Ames Bodyies for Model T Fords were manufactured. I felled to read mention of Mr Bendix's heading up this company and actually residing in Owensboro for around four years. I copied this from a site called; «Coachbilt» who has a brief history of the Ames Company.....

In 1909 the Carriage Woodstock Company broke ground for a two-story 80’ x 160’ addition to its plant which was to be used for the manufacture of the Ames Automobile. The Ames was introduced in the fall of 1909 and was offered with just one chassis, one engine and two body styles.

In 1908 leveraged resources gained from Vincent Bendix’ recent purchase of the Triumph Motor Car Company in Chicago enabled him to begin production of his Duplex and Bendix in Logansport, Indiana. 7,000 cars were reportedly produced before the firm failed in 1910.

After the failure Bendix sold new Cadillacs in Chicago and was appointed the Southern sales manager for the Haynes Motor Car Co. During the same time he developed the idea for the Bendix electric starter drive and while awaiting approval on the patents he attended the 1910 Chicago Automobile Show where he became interested in the just-introduced Ames Automobile. Bendix propositioned Ames for a chance to develop the new car, and shortly thereafter he was put in charge of its development and manufacture.

During 1911 Ames reorganized the Carriage Woodstock Company into the F.A. Ames Co. Soon afterwards two additional Ames-controlled firms were organized, the Ames Motor Car Co. and the Ames Body Corporation. The first would manufacture the Ames Automobile, the second would produce coachwork in-the-white for the F.A. Ames Co.

A 1911 Owensboro fire destroyed Ames sheet-iron loading warehouse, but did not interfere with vehicle production.

Under Bendix’ direction the 1912 Ames Automobile line expanded into three wheelbases and three engines, but when he left in 1913 the automobile returned to its one-chassis/one-engine lineup. While working for Ames, Bendix became friends with Herbert Sharlock, Ames director of sales and when he formed Bendix, Sharlock left Ownesboro to work for Bendix.

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Paul Walton Paul Walton 1966 Lotus Elan S3 SE FHC Jim Clark’s last road car 26 days ago

Then and now, the Lotus Elan could appear to be not a lot of car for the money. Well, until you drive one...

Motoring enthusiasts unable to get to Earls Court in October 1962 for the London Motor Show merely had to pop along to their local cinema to catch the highlights brought to them by Pathé News. A bit more effort required than reaching for your smartphone these days, but surely a more enriching experience. Following a brief sequence on the previous year’s Jaguar E-type, we cut to a lipstick red Lotus Elan, loaded with three cheerful-looking young ladies and rotating on a turntable.

In between innuendo-laden quips, our commentator finds space to talk about the car, ‘Much smaller, but very much in the high-performance class, the Lotus Elan is built on the foundation of racing success and with refinements every owner will appreciate.’ When the cameraman manages to tear his lens away from the young ladies, Sixties motoring enthusiast gets to marvel at what lies beneath those cheeky glassfibre curves. Painted, plated and polished to a level that foretold Seventies customisation trends, the Elan’s simple backbone chassis, independent suspension and twin-overhead camshaft engine certainly promised to live up to the hyperbole of being a product of motor sport-tuned minds.

Strangely for such a racing-focused manufacturer, its Elan wasn’t intended for competition use and it was the customers who provided the initial push onto track. When I say push, that wasn’t meant to be a cheap jibe on the Elan’s swiftly-earned reputation for not always functioning as intended. What racers professional and amateur, and wannabe racers on the road soon discovered, was a machine that reinvented what could be expected from a small sports car, not just in dynamic agility, but how it juggled the conflicting needs of the hotshoe driver with those of the owner who didn’t feel that a tiresome lack of comfort should be an essential price to pay. The hefty £1500 purchase price was steep enough.

All that was 60 years ago and we’re still going on about it. Time for an anniversary special package of features then.

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Sam Skelton Sam Skelton Driving a Fifties F1 paddock fixture - Tony Vandervell’s 1956 Bentley S1 Continental 27 days ago

Vandervell’s Bentleys 

The article on Tony Vandervell’s Bentley (Last Lap of Luxury) had particular interest because I have previously owned and currently own a Bentley with a Tony Vandervell connection. My third of six S-Type Continentals owned over nearly 40 years of driving these cars was an S2, two-door coupé previously owned by him. He may well have kept the Park Ward car featured until he passed away but he supplemented it with the two-door V8 version, covering 95,000 miles in less than three years early in its life. My current restoration project is a MkVI two-door coupé, B 381BG, by Freestone and Webb built for Vandervell Products and delivered in 1948, so presumably the second of the two MkVIs mentioned in the article. I found the car in Melbourne in a near-derelict state while on a BDC tour to Tasmania three years ago. I’ve owned three S1 Continental fastbacks by HJM. The first, a scruffy auto, acquired when our second child came along in 1983 because I couldn’t fit a child seat together with a carry cot in the back of a 911. Subsequent to both the S2, two-door cars above and an R-type Continental I acquired a manual S1 Continental by HJM, but the ’box didn’t suit it and even a clutch change failed to cure the clutch judder when setting off.

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Quentin Willson Quentin Willson Market Watch 1973 Citroën SM 1 month ago

Now more than ever, smart buying is about condition, mileage, history and provenance. To retain – or increase – value in this changing market your classic needs to be the proper thing. The real deal with no stories. And that means rebuilt or refreshed mechanicals, straight shimmering paint, equal panel gaps, retrimmed or rejuvenated interior, neat boot and under bonnet areas and lots and lots of paperwork. The veracity of the mileage is important too, so make sure it’s made credible by a paper trail of bills and sheaves of previous MoT certificates. Nobody wants to buy work or projects now. In fact, quite the opposite. The most desirable cars are the ones where successive owners have lost their shirts spending money preserving and pampering their classics. That’s where the strongest value is – where you’re paying sometimes less than a quarter of the total of what’s been spent on a classic over the years. And those deals are out there, more now than ever. As prices soften, more classics will look irresistible by virtue of the sums previously invested by their starry-eyed owners. The shifting market landscape of 2022 could unlock some of the greatest classic car value that we’ve seen for years. Make sure you choose wisely and buy smart.

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Andrew Noakes Andrew Noakes 1935 SS 1 Airline Saloon 1 month ago

Not heavy Kudos to Richard Bremner for writing such a brilliant piece on the S.S.1 Airline. I’ve often seen that car at Jaguar Heritage’s collection centre in Gaydon so it was great to read more about its history and what it’s like to drive. I will take issue with Richard, though, describing it as “heavy around the rear”. I think – and most will agree – it’s a very handsome car and not at all as Richard described. Thanks again for a great site.

 

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Andrew Noakes Andrew Noakes 1966 Aston Martin DB6 4.0 vs. 1965 Jaguar E-type 4.2 FHC Series 1 1 month ago

No less interesting marked the centenary of Jaguar was a masterful piece of publishing, covering all bases of the company’s 100 years. I especially liked the biographies of nine important people and could easily have read nine more! I also liked the E-type and DB6 twin test, two cars I will never, sadly, get to buy myself but that made the article no less interesting. And sorry to read Paul Walton is suffering my issues with his XF Sportbrake. I had a similar car for a few years and similar problems, finally selling it in 2018 for – whisper it – a Honda SUV which (fingers crossed) has been bullet proof so far. Jaguar certainly needs to improve its reliability if it’s to reach another 100 years! Congratulations to all the team for such a great magazine and keep up the good work.

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