Aaron Kaufman is an American TV personality, car racer and mechanic, born on 26 January 1982, in Crowley, Texas. He’s famous for appearing in the reality show “Fast N’ Loud”.
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There’s no information about Aaron Kaufman’s childhood and family, though it’s a known fact that he started being fascinated by cars from an early age due to his father’s influence.
However, even before his love with car-related things started, Kaufman was interested in taking things apart –such as toys and small artifacts – just to put them together again. This fascination with mechanisms that started as a hobby ultimately led him to find his passion in car building, modification and racing events.
While attending Crowley High, Kaufman bought his first car – a Jeep Cherokee Chief, and started improving it with modifications and new things on it. It was during this period that he met his fellow schoolmate Scot McMillan Jr., who helped him to install an extended pick-up cabin and air suspension on the car.
This also marked Kaufman’s start in car racing, as he and McMillan Jr. visited many exhibitions to race with their creation, going as far as California to show their skills.
After their matriculation, McMillan Jr. and Kaufman attended the University of Texas in Arlington, however, they soon decided that college wasn’t for them, and dropped-out, as McMillan Jr. recalled in an interview: ‘It’s not that we couldn’t do college.
We both got straight A’s. After we realized we were going to be in debt and we already knew more than the average person, we started our own business.’
As they couldn’t obtain a loan to set-up their shop due to their young age, the realization that a business together wasn’t possible at the time finally hit the two friends. Thus their dream had to be delayed for a few years.
Right after his exit from college, McMillan Jr. enlisted int the US Marines, and Kaufman pursued a mechanics career, and obtained his first job.
After parting ways with his friend McMillan Jr., Kaufman started working as a mechanic for Richard Rawlings in his car reparation and modification business Gas Monkey Garage.
In the years working with Rawlings, Kaufman improved his knowledge on car mechanisms, as he could not only use better tools and resources, but also be more creative on his modifications. Beside this, working with Rawlings -13 years his senior- allowed Kaufman to improve his experience on racing.
It’s unknown how many years Kaufman worked with Rawlings, but that at some point Gas Monkey Garage was shut down for financial reasons. This led Kaufman to find a new job as a mechanic in the shop 4 Wheel Parts; meanwhile his former associate Rawlings invested in a healthcare business.
Fast N’ Loud
Unknowingly to Kaufman, Rawlings had been in contact before with various producers, trying to convince them to create a TV series based on the Gas Monkey Garage. His efforts were mostly ignored until the idea reached Discovery Channel, which had been looking to produce a show based on car modifications.
Gas Monkey Garage was re-opened, and Kaufman was called back to his former job, but this time things weren’t quite the same. The way the business worked was different as it needed to fit the TV format of “Fast N’ Loud”. On the bright side, Kaufman’s old friend McMillan Jr. worked with him at some point of the series.
A producer of the network named Craig Coffman was in charge of the show: ‘We had no car shows on the air, and no one had any faith in it. They thought it was going to be a bomb. It turned out to be a sort of comedy. Richard and Aaron were a great duo, and it worked. The show started to get ratings right away, and that led to a lot of other car shows’.
Premiered in 2012, the show’s main focus is on buying cars to rebuild and put them on sale. The series is clearly aimed mostly at men, a fact proven by The New York Times in 2016, after the journal surveyed the most watched programs on air in the US and its audiences preferences: ‘It’s the show most favored by men on our list, by far — 83 percent of “likes” came from men’.
“Fast N’ Loud” is still on air, and various spin-off series from it have been aired. However, Aaron Kaufman doesn’t form part of the crew, anymore as he left the show in 2018.
Why did Aaron Kaufman leaves Gas Monkey?
Fans of “Fast N’ Loud” were surprised when in 2018 Aaron Kaufman announced he was leaving his job at Gas Garage Monkey. His sudden exit left many questions, and speculation regarding the reason circulated on the internet. However, in an interview with Art of Gears, Kaufman revealed the real reason for his departure: ‘the crossroads there, I wanted to build cars that were that big or bigger, and then TV needed cars that were much smaller than that.
On top of that there were some growing personal issues and professional differences of opinions and so I decided the time had come and I could see the fork in front of me.’
In the same interview Kaufman revealed he was in conversations with producers to appear in another show, though nothing was definite at the time as he declared: ‘If we go back to building cars on TV, it will be based on the premise fun with cars. Cars build out of imagination and of excitement and cars that move the soul and the body as well. Not cars built to go to auction, cars to make money, there are plenty of people who do it for a living, we are going to do it on TV and we are going to have a good time.’
Shortly after his exit from Gas Money Garage, Kaufman founded his own car repair and modification shop named Arclight Fabrication, based once again in his hometown Dallas.
A new show entitled “Shifting Gears with Aaron Kaufman” was announced, clearly satisfying Kaufman’s fans request to keep seeing Kaufman on air after he left his previous job. However, the show only lasted one season, bit in 2019 a new show entitled “Aaron Needs A Job” successfully premiered.
There’s not much known about Kaufman’s personal life, though it’s a known fact he’s an unmarried man and doesn’t have children.
In the early 2010s, Kaufman maintained a long-lasting romantic relationship with a woman named Lindsay J. However, the couple broke up, and in 2015 Kaufman started dating Lauren Moore Knob.
The couple often shares pictures together on Instagram.
For his work as a mechanic, business owner and his appearances on TV, Aaron Kaufman has an estimated net worth of $6 million, as of mid-2020.
Aaron Kaufman’s height and weight is unknown, though he has a slender build. He has dark brown hair and his most significant physical feature is his abundant, bushy beard.
As a kid one of his dreams was to become a park ranger.
In an interview with The Observer, he revealed that he used to consider himself a hippie.
His two pit bull dogs named Lizzie and Lola.
‘Cars don’t really die. They just have multiple lives. They reincarnate’ is his signature phrase.