Car Mechanics cover, November 1980
|Former editors||Peter Simpson|
|Staff writers||Rodney Jacques
|Frequency||Monthly (third Thursday)|
|First issue||April 1958|
|Company||Bauer Consumer Media Ltd|
Car Mechanics is a British motoring magazine published monthly by Bauer Media in Peterborough and edited by Martyn Knowles who took over in 2008 from long standing editor Peter Simpson. It is aimed at DIY motorists and the motor repair trade. The coverage ranges across all major car manufacturers and models sold in the UK chiefly in the last five to thirty years. It is the only news stand magazine of this type covering servicing, repair and restoration, with its nearest equivalent Practical Motorist having ceased publication in 1997.
Car Mechanics was launched in April 1958, originally published by Mercury House, who along with its successors published Car Mechanics until 1989 when the infamous Robert Maxwell bought the company. However he sold the AGB motoring publications within a matter of weeks to EMAP after stealing the pension fund. EMAP relaunched Car Mechanics as a performance orientated magazine, however in this form the magazine was not successful and in early 1992 Car Mechanics was taken over by the Kelsey Publishing who took it back to its DIY/practical routes and turned a title's fortunes around. Publishing transferred to Bauer Media (who had acquired EMAP's consumer magazine division in the meantime) from 3 December 2010, as part of a tit-for-tat dispute following Bauer's decision to take another licensed title (Classic Car Weekly) away from Kelsey, and Kelsey launching its own Weekly title (Classic Car Buyer) in response. As cars have become more complex, with a corresponding increase in the cost and complexity of tools and diagnostic equipment needed, more people are having repairs carried out professionally. This has led the magazine to broaden its appeal to include the independent motor trade whilst still retaining a focus base with the private DIY enthusiast.
In the early days of Car Mechanics, project cars were an important part of the magazine and Kelsey reintroduced them, having now had over 100 project cars since 1992. Recent project cars have been a Ford Focus diesel Estate and Vauxhall Zafira. Current projects include a Nissan Micra and Mercedes C Class. Past projects have ranged in price from free - Volvo 240, Rover 600, Ford Granada MkIII Ghia to three or four thousand pounds - BMWs etc. They include a Ford Escort MkIV, Ford Mondeo MkI, Citroen 2CV restoration, MGB restoration, Austin Metro, a Jaguar XJ40, an ex police Vauxhall Astra MkIII, ex-customs seizure Citroen XM TD, even a Sherpa minibus and, more recently, an ex-police Ford Mondeo MkIII, Jaguar X300, Volvo V70 diesel, Mazda MX-5, MG ZR, Saab 9-5, Land Rover Freelander, Volkswagen Golf MkIV, Skoda Octavia, Audi A6 Avant, Land Rover Discovery, Jaguar S Type, Vauxhall Astra MkIV, Ford Escort Mexico, Alfa Romeo 156, Lexus IS200, Audi A3 and Daewoo Matiz. Some of their restoration project articles were compiled and sold in book form.
- Writers' and Artists' Yearbook 2015. A&C Black. 31 July 2014. p. 112. ISBN 978-1-4729-1239-8. Retrieved 12 January 2017.
- "Car Mechanics magazine review". Old Classic Car. Retrieved 11 January 2017.
- "Bauer Media takes control of Car Mechanics magazine". Press Gazette. 23 November 2010. Retrieved 11 January 2017.