Where Free's a Crowd

PETER MACDIARMID / GETTY IMAGES

HANDOUT: London Lite is targeting the young commuter

In its 180-year history, London's Evening Standard has been hit by strikes, walkouts and even a World War II bomb. But the mischievous, opinionated tabloid has also fought off numerous foes to become the capital's only afternoon read.

Still, the challengers keep coming. Already suffering from steep drops in circulation (currently 301,000), the Standard now has to face two new free papers that could challenge its evening dominance. One, London Lite, is published by the Standard's own parent company, Associated Newspapers. Launched last week with 400,000 copies daily, London Lite aims for young professionals seeking...