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Autoweek is dead


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#1 Bob Riebe

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Posted 07 November 2019 - 22:47

I  just received the last print issue of Autoweek, they had been sending me re-up mail and then that stopped but the magazine kept on coming .
Now I know why.
 
It started in  I believe 1958 as Competition Press, then in the sixties turned into Competition Press & Autoweek which was what I first subscribed to in 1969; I stayed with it for thirty years but stopped when it turned into more of a every two weeks imitation of Motor Trend and the re-upped a few years later when I realized I missed it.
I was going to let it go again but they made that decision for me.
Sad really, definitely NOT the race coverage rag I subscribed for so long ago, but better than nothing or the kiddie porn snot faced punk car mags so common now.
 
OH well I just subscribed to a Australian vintage car magazine so there is something to fill the void.


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#2 JacnGille

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Posted 08 November 2019 - 00:45

Wow!



#3 R.W. Mackenzie

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Posted 08 November 2019 - 03:01

Autoweek was a fantastic publication back when my subscription began at the beginning of 1969. It's racing coverage was unmatched. This continued through the 70's but at some point (I forget exactly when) the racing coverage was cut back and the focus switched to the automotive industry and non-sporting vehicles. For me that was when Autoweek actually died. After two decades I let my subscription lapse and I moved on to other periodicals that were focused on racing.

 

Road & Track was great too with awesome racing articles but eventually went the same route and again I let my subscription lapse.



#4 pacificquay

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Posted 08 November 2019 - 10:40

Surely it's not dead, it has just transitioned to be a digital publication



#5 Henri Greuter

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Posted 08 November 2019 - 11:03

Pity,

Sign of the times I'm afraid....

#6 Jack-the-Lad

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Posted 08 November 2019 - 15:44

There were decades when I never missed an issue. My parents sent it to me every week when I was in Vietnam,. There were some great writers on the masthead.

#7 427MkIV

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Posted 08 November 2019 - 16:07

I subscribed in about 1981 or 1982 when I was 12 or 13. I'd walk to the post office, get a money order with grass-cutting money then mail in the subscription renewal. Like Bob, when it went to every two weeks, I didn't renew. Two-week-old racing coverage wasn't needed. I also let C&D and R&T lapse at about the same time. I could get my racing and car news instantly on the Web. I took my boxes of back issues to the local library.

 

Some of my favorite parts of those magazines were the full-page and two-page spreads from tire and wheel sellers. I dreamed about getting BBS or ATS wheels and Pirellis or Comp T/As. Anyone remember the Phoenix tires that matched the best from the big names in the magazine tire tests? 



#8 red stick

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Posted 08 November 2019 - 16:25

I subscribed in about 1981 or 1982 when I was 12 or 13. I'd walk to the post office, get a money order with grass-cutting money then mail in the subscription renewal. Like Bob, when it went to every two weeks, I didn't renew. Two-week-old racing coverage wasn't needed. I also let C&D and R&T lapse at about the same time. I could get my racing and car news instantly on the Web. I took my boxes of back issues to the local library.

 

Some of my favorite parts of those magazines were the full-page and two-page spreads from tire and wheel sellers. I dreamed about getting BBS or ATS wheels and Pirellis or Comp T/As. Anyone remember the Phoenix tires that matched the best from the big names in the magazine tire tests? 

No, but I spent a fair amount of time imagining aftermarket wheels on my mythical dream car. 

 

Leafing through these magazines, or at least the ones still in print, on newsstands these days just makes me sad.



#9 Bob Riebe

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Posted 08 November 2019 - 17:04

Surely it's not dead, it has just transitioned to be a digital publication

For me there is no difference, I do not read magazines on-line, or put it this way, back when I used to go to magazine racks to read articles in magazines not worth buying, that is how I treat articles on-line.

I want to read it when I want to, not worry about losing power to some electronic piece of debris.



#10 RA Historian

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Posted 08 November 2019 - 17:17

My story is similar to that of many of us. I was in high school and had heard about Competition Press, but had never seen a copy and did not know how to get it. Then at the end of 1959 Road & Track bought it and advertised it in their magazine. It took me but a minute to fill out the order blank, grub the three bucks yearly price from my Mom, and race to the mail box. The original Competition Press was a godsend. It covered absolutely everything, and immediately proved essential. If a copy was a day or two late coming in the mail, I fretted that it had been lost.

 

As we know, it morphed into Competition Press and Autoweek around 1965 when it went weekly from twice a month. Then Crain Publications bought it and put some doofus named Bob Irvan in charge, and he ran the Competition Press side of it into the ground while essentially turning the paper into a version of Automobile News, concentrating on passenger cars while almost ignoring racing. After a year or two of that, I let my subscription lapse. That was no hardship at all, because in 1980 On Track (the greatest racing mag ever) was born.

 

I was without Autoweek for several years until 1986 when Leon Mandel came on board and relaunched the publication. I subscribed once again, and have kept with it even though it has deteriorated from the Mandel version. But now, it is over for me.

 

It has ceased print publication and gone all digital. I have stated on this forum before that I abhor magazines on line, and simply refuse to read them that way. I am completely against having to pull something up on line, then scroll up and down, pan right and left, and so on. It drives me nuts. I want something I can hold in my hand, flip the pages back and forth, and store on a shelf for future reference. Digital does not do it for me. Another US publication went all digital early last year, and I simply stopped reading it. Even though they gave me a password to use to get it on line, and had almost a year to go on the price of my subscription, I never bothered looking at it again. I will not look at Autoweek any more either. 

 

The last issue says that a letter is coming explaining my options. If they offer a refund on the unused portion, I will take that. I will not read it online. 

 

Goodbye Autoweek. 


Edited by RA Historian, 09 November 2019 - 16:08.


#11 Henri Greuter

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Posted 08 November 2019 - 19:40

My two sweetest memories about Autoweek, permit me to share them with all of you.

 

Late '91, my friend George Peters and I published our (what eventually was our first) co-production on the Novi Indycars. The publisher had forwarded a review copy to Autoweek too. But nothing appeared in print. So the publisher verified with the editors of Autoweek if they had received the copy at all or if it had gone missing in mail. Their answer was that they had received it and a review was to be printed but they had a plan with this review and the publishers were asked to have some patience because they were confident that we would be pleased with their plan.

The review was eventually printed in an early May '92 edition, the one that also contained the preview on Indy '92. The publisher later told us that sales had been slowly but steadily those first months but literally within less than a week after the review the sales took off like a rocket and many customers writing in mentioning this review as of how they got aware of the book's existance.

That review had the same effect of the book sales as that of the supercharger on the Novi engine's power outputs once it reached a certain rpm level..

 

In that way Pre-Internet era, mail etc came slowly. And somehow I never ended up with an example of that edition of Autoweek for my own collection and the matters related with the book I collected. So I took the efforts to write to the editor, explained who I was etc and if it was possible to get hold of a copy after all and that I was of course willing to refund their costs.

I got a real nice letter back, togeter with 4 copies for free and a lot of nice words about the book I had co-written.

 

Taking a subscription was a bit too much fo me but of all US car magazines, Autoweek was from then on the one for which I had a soft spot and the ones that I did buy when I was in the States.

 

Hence my sadness about this demise.



#12 Bob Riebe

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Posted 08 November 2019 - 23:29

Magazines are dying and here is an example a bit off of my topic.

 

Over a decade ago  I was investing heavily and therefore had subscription to many business magazines.

They had truly good deal though sub. seemed high but duration was long.

Well I got my brother , it was free to me, a subscription to MONEY magazine mailed to my home place, he did not really read it, got married and left.

This was over ten years ago; it just kept coming and coming so one day I looked at the end sub. date, it was 2024. I have NO idea how that came to be BUT MONEY was turning int a tine worthless rag.

Suddenly , one day I get a Sports Illustrated in the mail with a cover letter saying MONEY was kaput and this was the replacement for the rest of the sub.

I never read Sport Illustrated but now it is a nice surprise rather than a magazine with nothing in it that was also no good for toilet paper

I do think, not here cannot check, they reduce end sub. time to 2021. 



#13 PCC

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Posted 09 November 2019 - 04:39

Sad to hear this - my Dad's subscription to Autoweek played a big part of my early interest in the sport.

 

In fact, Autoweek was the site of the first thing I ever published - exactly fifty years ago next week. I was of a very tender age, but it was already clear that I was destined for TNF:

 

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#14 raceannouncer2003

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Posted 09 November 2019 - 07:12

I reported on the Westwood races for CP in the mid-60s.  I'd go from our home in White Rock, BC, across the border to Blaine, Washington.  I'd phone Leon Mandel from a booth, and he'd record my reports.

 

A couple of years ago, my brother and I attended the historic races at Mosport.  I'd never been there before.  We met Lionel Birnbom and I showed him the cover of the Oct 16, 1965 CP & Autoweek.  On the top of the first page was Lionel's writeup on the Mont Tremblant Group 7 race, and right below that was my article on the Texaco Pro Invitational at Westwood.  Lionel was quite tickled by that.

 

I have some digital copies of the some the early editions.  They talked about digitizing all the past issues, but I don't think they ever did.

 

Vince H.



#15 TerryS

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Posted 10 November 2019 - 09:01

I just received the last print issue of Autoweek, they had been sending me re-up mail and then that stopped but the magazine kept on coming .
Now I know why.

OH well I just subscribed to a Australian vintage car magazine so there is something to fill the void.

For interest which Aussie magazine did you subscribe to?

#16 hlfuzzball

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Posted 10 November 2019 - 16:13

In recent years Autoweek was just about giving it away to lure new subscribers.

#17 Doug Nye

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Posted 10 November 2019 - 17:14

Sadly these days nearly all hard-print journals are gazing down the gun barrel.  

 

More cheerfully does anyone remember 'Road & Track's mickey-taking spoof - 'Compost Press', inhabited by the likes of FIA President Raumfartner?

 

DCN



#18 Bob Riebe

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Posted 10 November 2019 - 18:50

For interest which Aussie magazine did you subscribe to?


Survivor Car Australia
I will probably pick-up Street Machine again down the road and maybe one or two more.
I used to get about a half dozen magazines from over seas from South Africa to New Zealand but money got tight .

#19 fbarrett

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Posted 10 November 2019 - 19:11

Leon and Denise were mentors for this amateur. Right about now, they must be hitting redline in their graves.



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#20 David Birchall

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Posted Yesterday, 02:58

My favourite memories of Autoweek are a classified advt for three (3) BRM Formula 3 engines for $1000--we went back and forth on that.  And a Lotus 22 fitted with an ex Scarab Buick V8 reduced to 3 liters-We went back and forth at $1500 I recall...

What a great magazine!