The first issue of Car Life (The Illustrated Motor Magazine) was published by Henry Scharf of Motor Publications Inc. of Washington DC, in February of 1954. The cover credit stated “More than $6,500 has been invested in restoring these flame red classics, the Auburn, left and Cord”, about the cars that were featured in a 6-page article inside the magazine. Elsewhere in this issue there were features on the Briggs Cunningham Coupe (production number 12) and the Rover Gas Turbine car from the UK.
The first 74-page issue was edited by the former editor of Speed Age Don O’Reilly, and was on the newstand for just 35 cents. Car Life would continue until October of 1970 when the cover of the final issue (Vol:17, No.9) featured the Plymouth Trans-am car of Swede Savage. The magazine ended in and was merged into Motor Trend in the December 1970 issue.
A big thank you to Auto-Archives volunteer Nicholas Novack who scanned all these issues of Car Life.