Fine-line survey of the wide world of cars - from Sunrises to Oltcits; World Cars 1982, compiled by the Automobile Club of Italy. Pelham, N.Y.: Herald Books. $39.50.; Automobil Revue, published by Automobil Revue, Switzerland's first motoring weekly. 28 Swiss francs; 32 West German marks.

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Popular or obscure, costly or plain-Jane, just about every car in the world - more than a thousand from 36 countries - is included between the covers of this 440-page tome, World Cars 1982. Even the Oltcit from Romania and the Sunrise of India rate some space. In fact, it's an awesome array of steel and glass and plastic, complete with detailed specifications on engines, chassis, suspensions, steering, and brakes.

In addition, dimensions and weight are given along with data on body, tires, and performance.

The book is laced with numerous pictures, which bring all the data into fine-line focus.

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The second publication, the 606-page Automobil Revue with soft cover, is compiled and printed by one of the world's major automotive publications, Automobil Revue of Bern, Switzerland. Its drawback for American motorists is that it is written only in German and French, not in English.

All is not lost for the English-only speaker, however. There is a sheet which gives an explanation - in English - of all 1982 car specifications, thus making it easier to excerpt vital data on the hundreds of cars between the covers of the publication.

Some of the new cars shown at the Geneva automobile show this year are described in detail. Prices are also given.

The full-color ads are fun to study as well. Whether or not you own a Ferrari or Japan's No. 1 minicar, the Suzuki Alto, you can peruse their dimensions and lines without leaving the satisfying comfort of the living room or den.

The publisher can be reached at Auotomobil Revue, Vertriebsabteilung, Nordring 4, CH-3001 Bern, Switzerland.

The book was published in conjunction with the 52d international motor show in Geneva.

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