Are classic cars more beautiful than modern cars, or is it nostalgia that makes it seem that way?

Perhaps I should clarify myself at this point; I think there are plenty of cars being produced today that are great to look at. I would happily sit and stare at an Alfa Romeo 8C all day long whilst writing romantic poetry about lonely clouds and semi-monocoque chassis'. Or whenever I get to take our Audi A5 long-termer home I spend most of the evening walking past a front window so I can look at it. Yes, this means I should get out more, but that's a whole other blog.

We will soon be hosting 'Autocar's most beautiful car' survey online, which includes cars from all eras and which has me completely flummoxed because every car I want to win was built before I was born.

The Lamborghini Miura is just as much art as Michealangelo's David, and anyone who says otherwise has no soul. The E-Type is still influencing design today, as is the AC Cobra, and if the Merc 300SL Gullwing isn't then it should be.

I cannot look at these cars without thinking that something has been lost from modern car design.

It can't be nostalgia, because I wasn't around to experience the cars when they came out. Of course, I can still get all misty eyed about the good old days when men were men, women were women, and cars came with wicker picnic baskets as standard, but I'm an eighties child so in truth I have no idea what I missed.

Of course, way back when there was no legislation and car design was a blue sky industry free from most of the legislation we have today. Modern car design is bound by all manner of restraints, from production budgets and engineering to Euro NCAP, and that's no bad thing.

So is this all a result of rose-tinted glasses, or have we already experienced the most beautiful cars we'll ever see and that's that?