Hot Rod Designer. Cartoonist. Born the son of Marie Bauer and Henry Roth, a cabinet maker, in Beverly Hills, California. While in high school he bought his first car, a 1933 Ford, and his interest in automobiles dominated his life thereafter. After completing his national service in 1955, he started building autos in his garage. In 1959 he produced the custom hot rod 'The Outlaw' which was featured in the January 1960 issue of 'Car Craft.' Other hot rods followed including 'The Beatnik Bandit' (1961), 'The Mysterion' (1963), 'The Orbitron' (1964), and 'The Road Agent' (1965). In 1965, his custom dune buggy, 'The Surfite' was featured in the film 'Beach Blanket Bingo.' Additionally, he created cartoons of monster characters such as 'Drag Nut,' 'Mother's Worry,' and 'Mr. Gasser,' and the most famous, 'Rat Fink,' which were merchandised as model kits and T-shirts. Roth branched out, and next began customizing motorcycles, he started his own publication, specific to the market, called 'Choppers' which ran from 1967 to 1970. His custom bikes included the trikes dubbed 'Candy Wagon,' 'Rubber Ducky' and 'The Great Speckled Bird.' In 1968 the Mattel corporation first introduced Hot Wheels model cars, and Roth’s 'Beatnik Bandit' was one of the first produced by the company. He was known for his outlandish fiberglass bodywork, and intricate custom paint jobs, he was credited with being the first to paint pinstripes on an automobile. His artwork was also seen during the late 1980's and early 1990's in underground comics. He succumbed to a heart attack at the age of 69.
Bio by: Iola
Marie Bauer Roth