So the inevitable has happened at Autotrader with five of their titles –Autotrader, Top Marques (geddit), Truck and Plant, Van Trader and Farm Trader – going to that great breakers yard in the sky. Even two years ago Autotrader was selling over 60,000 copies a week, but it is now down to just 27,000 – a stunning illustration of how cyberspace ((c) HM the Queen) has devastated the classifieds business, whether that is small ads, recruitment or listings.
Looking more broadly at the motoring category we can see that there are some vulnerable big names, with Dennis, Haymarket and Bauer all having multiple products that are leaking readers and advertisers like oil from a Mark 1 Escort. What, really, is the point of a weekly car magazine? Or a monthly ‘motoring news’ title? Exactly.