AutoTrader vs Autocar - Comparing two videos from the same day
It's a car YouTube showdown, in the blue corner - AutoTrader and in the red corner, it's Autocar.
Here I shall compare two videos both channels uploaded on the same day (22nd October 2021). The AutoTrader video is 10 minutes long whilst the Autocar video is some 8 minutes long, so I think the comparison here is fair.
Let's begin with AutoTrader's video. It was Rory Reid's review of the Mercedes AMG GLB 35:
Now, for context, I have been subscribed to AutoTrader since early 2020, I'd guess. One of the main factors or rather the factor as to why I subscribed was the fact that Rory Reid was presenting their car reviews. I think Rory Reid was criminally underused on Top Gear so I was very interested to see how he'd fare as the solo presenter on AutoTrader. Well, I'm still subscribed and I watch the majority of their reviews, so I'm going to say that ultimately AutoTrader is very much worth subscribing to. (not sponsored)
This review is quick and to the point. Aside from what Rory Reid thinks of the car, the presentation of the review is really nicely done. The sound quality is good as are the in-car stuff and the pieces to camera for when the car is stationary. Clearly AutoTrader have got this down to a tee.
Now is also the time to mention subscriber numbers. Since I subscribed to AutoTrader, I have seen the numbers and the view count increase. The channel is in a very good place. Compare it to before Rory Reid joined and it's like chalk and cheese. The video production side of things have improved hugely. Long may that success continue.
Now, it is time to look at Autocar's video.
Aside from their YouTube channel, Autocar is primarily known for its weekly magazine. It's a fairly big deal for car enthusiasts here in Britain. It's been in publication since 1895, so in terms of print media, they have got things down to a tee.
However, the same things cannot be said of their YouTube channel. The sound quality is what stuck out to me first and foremost. The presenter, Matt Saunders, is miked up and everything but the sound is just so much more amateurish than the sound quality we have on AutoTrader.
Matt Saunders clearly knows his stuff but that's not the issue. His piece to camera is then framed poorly. We want to see lots of the car, a proper wide shot - then cut to a closer shot (but not too close) of Matt doing his piece to camera. Instead the bonnet is up, so a fair amount of the frame is eaten up. Then the rest of the review is inside the car.
Stylistically, this review feels so restricted. Move around more, film this, film that. AutoTrader's video was slick whilst Autocar's video felt a tad rushed.
And I think now is another time to talk subscribers. I am not subscribed to Autocar but watched today's video out of curiosity, as I don't usually watch their videos. The channel has 798K subscribers, which is bonkers but the view count doesn't reflect that. I'd argue that most of these subscribers don't engage with the YouTube content. AutoTrader's ever growing number of subscribers (623K by the last count) are more consistently watching the videos.
So, Autocar merely need to take notes from AutoTrader. Problem solved. And the more high quality car content there is online, the better for all car fans.
Maybe I'm being a bit harsh, but those are my thoughts. I would recommend you watch the videos for yourself, to form your own opinions. Comment your thoughts down below!👇