Is print dead? The amount of bespoke publications being launched these past few years suggests otherwise and one of the latest is certainly one of the best. The Road Rat magazine is simply automotive journalism in long form at its finest.
At the helm of The Road Rat is Michael Harvey, a veteran editor of some of the world foremost automotive publications bringing with him inside knowledge and plenty of connections to make the stories happen back by a talented set of writers, illustrators, photographers, and designers.
In this, the premiere edition, we get an in depth look at Lewis Hamilton’s career with stunning visuals from top F1 photographer Darren Heath, a fantastic article written by Giorgetto Giugiaro who shares the same sentiments towards modern car design as Privateer Garage, a brilliant look at the rise and fall of the Mercedes Benz SL, and much more.
And you can tell there has been plenty of research conducted into each of the articles going in depth and challenging the readers’ perception of the topic at hand. There is so much more to every car, every event, and every personality in the automotive industry than we realise and The Road Rat writers do their best at uncovering it all.
The size of the magazine is the first thing that strikes you, then the thickness. At 290mm in height and 230mm in width it allows the beautiful photography throughout to do its thing and you soon find yourself falling into the page almost as though you’re there yourself with Lewis Hamilton, or opposite Giorgetto Giugiaro.
“…you’re getting quality and more of it, rather than a monthly edition of old news”
Keeping the visual interest going throughout is a wonderful playfulness of graphic elements and typography, sometimes at the expense of readability but never when it comes to an article itself.
It’s all too easy to fit into brand guidelines and templates and lose that creativity especially for a monthly but the Road Rat is a quarterly free from such constraints and given the beautiful paper stock, size, and quality is priced as such. It’s not cheap, but you’re getting quality and more of it, rather than a monthly edition of old news.
The cover image of Lewis Hamilton by artist Sebastian Kruger was commissioned adding to the specialness of it all. The fact the team decided to put a face on the cover of an automotive magazine rather than the latest hypercar or classic Porsche says it all.
This is a magazine to help you slow time down and worthy of keeping on the bookshelf and revisiting. I would go so far as to say The Road Rat signals a new era for long form automotive journalism.
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“Every morning for the last four months we’ve downed tools at the design and editorial end of The Road Rat office and moved to our ‘post room’ to put magazines in boxes, stick labels on those boxes, carry them to the car (each Road Rat weighs over 1kg/2.4lbs so were are all in GREAT shape now…) and drive to our local post office. _ “We’ve done this thousands and thousands of times. ?????? _ “There have been days when we’ve been overwhelmed by the demand but we have loved knowing exactly where each and every Road Rat was heading. (You can still order at the link in bio BTW but don’t hang around) _ “In just over a fortnight we’ll have two magazines to post. Issue Two is in final production now and I have to say; I think everyone who ordered and appreciated Issue One won’t be disappointed — it’s really fantastic. _ “We’ll be launching a pre-order scheme any day now. In the meantime I just want to thank everyone who’s supported us so far” _ Mikey, Editor The Road Rat _ ? @amyshorephotography (Thanks Amy) _ The Road Rat. A Thing for Cars. . . . . #TheRoadRat #AThingForCars #SuperCar #SuperCars #ClassicCar #ClassicCars #Instacar #Instacars #CarsOfInstagram #Classics #Art #Photography #Design #Magazine