From a mop-headed East Coast hot rodder to a proper PR pro, Marty Schorr has lived through the changes of auto journalism from the ‘60s to the disruption of the Internet. During that time he has been the editor of nearly a dozen automotive magazines including: Cars, Hi-Performance Cars, Custom Rodder and Speed and Supercar. He was the founding editor of High-Performance Pontiac and the top Corvette enthusiast publication, VETTE. He also published Quicksilver Communications’ library of brand-specific Marque Series enthusiast books in the early1980s. For 18 model years he was Buick’s East Coast PR reprehensive.
In the early days he was a notable member of the aggressive East Coast, “show us what you got” auto writing contingent that came to the annual long lead previews staged by Detroit’s Big Three at their proving grounds. The fierce competition in the nation’s media center and the gold then in newsstand sales and one-shots, made the East Coast scribes’ entrepreneurial journalism understandable.
It was in marked contrast with the California cool of the West Coast writers who treated the annual rollouts of the year’s models like a wine tasting at a brothel. Perhaps they were secure in the complicit understanding that it was not a journalistic enterprise they were engaged in but an elaborate marketing plan to launch the year’s new models. And, for some, the knowledge that during the ‘Golden Hour’ for car photography when the other writers were enjoying Midwest haute cuisine they would be able to sneak some live models onto the guarded proving grounds to spice the sheen of their new vehicle shots. By that time, Marty Schorr was probably winging back to New York with plans for the next newsstand cover and one-shot he and his associates would publish.
But that’s yesterday. He’s just finished writing a book with a Fall on-sale date for Motorbooks. Title is Ford Total Performance, focus on HP activities from 1961 to 1971, with lead chapters on the 1920s Fours, 1930s & 1940s Flathead V8s and 1950s Y-Block V8s. That’s in addition to writing his CarGuyChronicles.Com blog, maintaining his PMPR automotive PR and marketing agency launched in 1982 and fostering the Sarasota Auto Club for Car Guys Who Lunch now with satellites in Florida, Washington, DC, New Jersey, Canada, Germany and Iran.
He has a no-bs resume of achievements and innovations that have made him a deserved, frequent recipient of awards from various automotive groups. His most recent award: an honorary membership in the Automotive History Preservation Society. No doubt with more to come.