Sports Car Illustrated magazine was formed by Dale Naef and Frank Fittanto in Atlanta, Georgia in 1985. Content was organized in three primary sections: driving impressions, feature articles and departments. Driving impressions featured foreign performance cars including sport cars and sedans, hot hatches and supercar exotica. Features and departments typically addressed articles of interest to readers including interviews, some racing results and profiles of historical vehicles. Publishing was on a bi-monthly schedule until 1987 when it went to monthly.
This title competed against the "big 3" with a similar content focus - Road & Track, Car and Driver, and later Automobile Magazine.
The publishers had previously produced AutoBuff.
Mr. Naef had originally worked for Petersen Publishing in advertising sales. In this publication, Naef was listed as the publisher and executive editor, and Fittanto was the executive publisher. The original editor was Dave Emanuel, but he was shortly replaced by Mark Ewing who stayed through the transition to new owners.
In 1988, the title was purchased by Ken Field of Itasca, Illinois who also owned Continental Web Press. Hollis "Holly" Hedrich became the publisher, as he had been a former drag racer, engine builder and editor with Hot Rod.
Editorial and executive offices were moved to Newport Beach, California at 3901 Westerly Place. Mr. Hedrich continued the publication and expanded the driving impressions section to include US sports cars and sedans along with foreign vehicles. He also oversaw the name change to Sport Car International.
The table of contents can be seen by clicking on the icon.
The publisher provided net paid circulation data to The Standard Periodical Directory from 1988 to 1990. The reported print production ranged from 176,000 to 250,000.
A total of 35 issues were printed from November, 1985 through June, 1989 when the title was changed. All cover images are complete.