Automotive Ads and Brochures

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  • texasestexases Member Posts: 10,636
    If I had the time, I'd dig up pics of a (junked) Audi 100 and a (well-preserved) MB 280SE today...
  • fintailfintail Member Posts: 56,985
    That's a good one, as the 100LS was also kind of like a weird parallel universe MB on the outside, too:

    image
  • sdasda Member Posts: 6,882
    edited January 2019
    fintail said:

    That's a good one, as the 100LS was also kind of like a weird parallel universe MB on the outside, too:

    image

    That is very similar to the '71 100 LS Automatic that mom had when we were in France. Dad bought it from a Canadian couple that were moving back to Canada. That series had inboard disc brakes and fwd. It went thru front brake pads about every 8000km or 5k mi. It was a nice car at the time, but needed frequent maintenance.
    This was in '75-76. We moved back to the US in August of '76.

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  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Member Posts: 64,481
    PF_Flyer said:

    It's JUST like a Benz... un huh :)

    To be fair, when they claimed it looks like a Benz, it didn't say from what distance. You just have to take that ad, rip it out of the magazine and put it on the curb across the street from your house. See? You can't tell the difference. B)
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Member Posts: 64,481
    edited January 2019
    Oh, I owned an Audi 100LS. I loved that car. Rescued it from a wrecking yard that sold rebuilds. IIFC, I had to put a cylinder head on it-the other one was warped (no surprise there). Used it in Colorado, and it was a good snow car and an excellent highway cruiser. Of course, I was judging it against standards of the time, when most American cars were still big, wallowy, and made out of legos. When the transmission died on the LS, I bought a used '66 Toronado from a hippie shaman who was apparently getting messages to go to Portland (of course), and I loved that car, too. I was a FWD pioneer in a sea of conventionality. :)
  • PF_FlyerPF_Flyer Member Posts: 9,372
    edited January 2019
    A more prescient ad would tell you what they'll eventually say :) (spoiler alert... I had one so I know)


  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Member Posts: 64,481
    A child prodigy that became the devil's spawn. Too bad--it was an attractive car for the time. Who knows? It could have been the Datsun 240Z.
  • sdasda Member Posts: 6,882
    edited January 2019


    I've shared this pic before. I paid $495 for my '71 Vega GT late '77 and had my first car payment of $27.92 for 12 months, lol. IIRC I got $160 for the '62 Galaxie that I had bought earlier in the year. Yes the Vega used oil, a lot of it. But it always started and never stranded me. It drove better than the '71 Datsun 510 wagon we had at the time. It is missing the GT badge on the left front fender and bottom trim as I did a quick replacement from a junked car. The fender was badly dented when I got it.


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  • kyfdxkyfdx Moderator Posts: 232,930
    I bought a new Cobra II in 1977 for around $4400.

    I think you made the better buy. ;)

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  • berriberri Member Posts: 10,165
    Vega - might eulogize "ashes to ashes, rust to dust" ;)
  • ab348ab348 Member Posts: 18,913
    sda said:



    I never really cared for the front end design on the 1st-gen Vega. The later one with the slanted nose to accommodate the 5mp bumper looked much better to me. I know this initial one was supposed to be similar to the 70 1/2 Camaro but something got lost in translation.

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  • ab348ab348 Member Posts: 18,913
    edited January 2019
    Speaking of ads with quotes about the car in question, Mercury went down a similar path:




    That quote probably says more about the quality of Motor Trend's writing back in the day than it does about the car.

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  • ab348ab348 Member Posts: 18,913
    Since we are in a lull from the blizzard of 1920s ads, I thought I would post a curious thing I came across. Just as the Mercury ad above references the Continental, so did this billboard. It is doubly interesting in that the '61 Continental was designed by Elwood Engel, who moved to Chrysler not long after that as chief designer and applied his preferences to "fill the box to the corners" with a generally squared-off form into a lot of their cars of the 1960s. But it is very unusual for one manufacturer to tout their car as having some of what one of the other members of the Big Three were producing.


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  • fintailfintail Member Posts: 56,985
    And they even used a lower case "c" to avoid shenanigans.

    On the Ford comparison idea, like the Cougar linking itself to the Continental (Mark III I assume), Ford liked to link the Elite to the Thunderbird:

    image

    The "Thunderbird Tradition" must mean "53 feet long" or something similar.
  • berriberri Member Posts: 10,165
    I thought the Pinto and Vega looked better as small wagons (or Kamnback in Vegaspeak I guess).

    Never cared for the 67-68 big Mopar styling too much. The late 60's in general seemed sometimes like a design transition period for the industry.

    I also never understood why buyers paid Olds/Buick prices for the Ford Elite. But I think it sold well, so what did I know.
  • sdasda Member Posts: 6,882
    Ford went heavy with the wide body colored moldings on their 'luxury' cars. The deep dish wheel was popular, too. I admit to liking the clean look of the deep dish alloy wheel.
    Dad had them on his '77 Grand Marquis.

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  • omarmanomarman Member Posts: 2,702
    The driver's ed car in 1975

    + the music which the coach (our driver's ed instructor) let us play on the stereo

    = good times
    A time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing.
  • imidazol97imidazol97 Member Posts: 27,103
    I'm loving all the pictures and blasts from the past here. Thanks again.

    I recall wanting a Granada. I mean really wanting one.

    As for the Cougars, I had a Mustang and still liked the early Cougars better. They were
    just more expensive and out of my reach. There was--is-- something about the styling
    that really appealed to me.

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  • ab348ab348 Member Posts: 18,913
    After the debacle of the Renault Dauphine left their US reputation in tatters, Renault had to try to rebuild consumer confidence in 1966 and 1967. They did it by running a series of ads that were remarkably frank about their previous mistakes. I'm not sure how that made people who had bought Dauphines feel.




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  • fintailfintail Member Posts: 56,985
    Speaking of Renault, this one is a pile of memories for me:

    image

    For whatever reason, I loved this design when it hit this market. I think I was 5 or 6. My dad even took me to the local dealer, who gave me a poster of one (!), and I put it up in my room. I last saw one on the road here over 5 years ago.
  • MichaellMichaell Moderator Posts: 238,046
    fintail said:

    Speaking of Renault, this one is a pile of memories for me:

    image

    For whatever reason, I loved this design when it hit this market. I think I was 5 or 6. My dad even took me to the local dealer, who gave me a poster of one (!), and I put it up in my room. I last saw one on the road here over 5 years ago.

    $11,000 in 1982 is about $29,000 today. About right.

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  • benjaminhbenjaminh Member Posts: 6,311
    edited January 2019
    Back with the Saturday Evening Post it's the end of 1924, when you could buy the Rolls Royce of pens even if you couldn't afford the car itself, and you could buy a toy car in several different models—including Buick, Packard, and Rickenbacker. Up until this point, strangely, Ford had been advertising its new upmarket Lincoln without mentioning any connection with it, but now decided it was an advantage to say that Lincoln had the vast resources of Ford behind it. In 1924 about half of all cars sold were the Model T, and this ad shows Fords pouring out in the thousands every work day from the assembly line. There were Ford factories in several cities by 1924.



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  • benjaminhbenjaminh Member Posts: 6,311
    edited January 2019
    1925....A baby with a car plate welcomes in the new year, while over in France Citroen is going all steel. Iirc GM didn't go all steel until the mid 1930s? But GM did team up with DuPont to create Duco car paints, which were more durable and more colorful than previous paints.




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  • benjaminhbenjaminh Member Posts: 6,311
    edited January 2019
    1925....Lincoln measured their manufacturing precision sometimes to 1/4000th of an inch.




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  • benjaminhbenjaminh Member Posts: 6,311
    1925....




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  • berriberri Member Posts: 10,165
    edited January 2019
    Renault Fuego and LeCar. Never seem to see any left on the roads, even out west. Don't see the AMC Renault Alliance anymore either.
  • PF_FlyerPF_Flyer Member Posts: 9,372
    Love the Philco "don't get stuck on the tracks" ad. Similar approach used to sell all sorts of items... don't let the bear get YOU :)


  • kyfdxkyfdx Moderator Posts: 232,930
    berri said:

    Renault Fuego and LeCar. Never seem to see any left on the roads, even out west. Don't see the AMC Renault Alliance anymore either.

    They could barely keep them running, when new. :p

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  • ab348ab348 Member Posts: 18,913
    kyfdx said:

    berri said:

    Renault Fuego and LeCar. Never seem to see any left on the roads, even out west. Don't see the AMC Renault Alliance anymore either.

    They could barely keep them running, when new. :p
    I'm seeing a pattern here with Renault. :s

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  • fintailfintail Member Posts: 56,985
    There are a few LeCar still kicking around here, although not seen on the road much. I remember a 4 door model was for sale not far from me, a couple years ago.
  • MichaellMichaell Moderator Posts: 238,046
    Although mine was a 1979, I thought I'd post a page from the 1978 Pontiac Sunbird brochure:


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  • MichaellMichaell Moderator Posts: 238,046
    And another page -- interesting that the optional 5-speed was a dogleg:


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  • fintailfintail Member Posts: 56,985
    A new year's wish from MB, 1963, interesting they used Euro lights for a USDM ad:

    image
  • MichaellMichaell Moderator Posts: 238,046
    fintail said:

    A new year's wish from MB, 1963, interesting they used Euro lights for a USDM ad:

    image

    Looks like a Euro license plate.

    I often see Euro cars appear in US commercials; I don't think it's a big thing, since the cars are pretty much the same, there and here.

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  • fintailfintail Member Posts: 56,985
    And now that I read it, the ad copy has kind of a funny direct translation vibe to it.

    USDM vs Euro differences are a lot less significant now that bumpers are relatively standardized, and headlight lenses are mostly the same.
    Michaell said:


    Looks like a Euro license plate.

    I often see Euro cars appear in US commercials; I don't think it's a big thing, since the cars are pretty much the same, there and here.

  • fintailfintail Member Posts: 56,985
    MB passenger cars full line, 1987, a golden age for the brand:

    image
  • ab348ab348 Member Posts: 18,913
    An interesting personal tidbit on the Renault subject. Back in ye olden days of 1976 to 78 I was taking my MBA, back when it was still a somewhat unusual degree to have, not one found in every box of Cracker Jack like it has become today. The last exam I wrote for the degree in early 1978 was my Business Policy final, which was a 3-hour case study. You were given a previously unseen case document laying out the situation and issues facing a certain (real) company, and in the 3 hours given you had to digest the facts, come up with a viable strategy and policy going forward, and then write multiple pages freehand that laid all that out logically in a narrative format.

    I had an advantage in that I could always write reasonably well but given that I was still reading everything about cars I could lay my hands on, I was given a huge gift when I opened the exam and saw that it dealt with the challenges facing AMC. I knew a lot about them already beyond what was given in the case so I just had to come up with the strategic parts. I concluded that they needed to find a partner, and (somehow, don't ask me why) came up with Renault. I wrote my response based on that and was quite happy with myself when I handed it in. I got a B on the exam which disappointed me because I thought I had aced it, but since that assured me of my degree I didn't challenge the mark.

    Shortly thereafter came the news that AMC and Renault were going to collaborate, followed a year later by Renault buying a significant equity interest. I felt totally vindicated. But even more interesting in retrospect was that my professor for the course was (now) Sir Graham Day, who was back in Canada after working as Managing Director for the big U.K. Cammell Laird shipyard in the mid-70s, and would soon go back there to run/sell off British Steel for Mrs. Thatcher and then later take on the job as Chairman of British carmaker Rover Group. For such a high-powered type he was remarkably approachable and easy to talk to, through there was no doubt he was very sure of himself. I liked him a lot better than many in Britain did I suspect.

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  • MichaellMichaell Moderator Posts: 238,046
    ab348 said:

    An interesting personal tidbit on the Renault subject. Back in ye olden days of 1976 to 78 I was taking my MBA, back when it was still a somewhat unusual degree to have, not one found in every box of Cracker Jack like it has become today. The last exam I wrote for the degree in early 1978 was my Business Policy final, which was a 3-hour case study. You were given a previously unseen case document laying out the situation and issues facing a certain (real) company, and in the 3 hours given you had to digest the facts, come up with a viable strategy and policy going forward, and then write multiple pages freehand that laid all that out logically in a narrative format.

    I had an advantage in that I could always write reasonably well but given that I was still reading everything about cars I could lay my hands on, I was given a huge gift when I opened the exam and saw that it dealt with the challenges facing AMC. I knew a lot about them already beyond what was given in the case so I just had to come up with the strategic parts. I concluded that they needed to find a partner, and (somehow, don't ask me why) came up with Renault. I wrote my response based on that and was quite happy with myself when I handed it in. I got a B on the exam which disappointed me because I thought I had aced it, but since that assured me of my degree I didn't challenge the mark.

    Shortly thereafter came the news that AMC and Renault were going to collaborate, followed a year later by Renault buying a significant equity interest. I felt totally vindicated. But even more interesting in retrospect was that my professor for the course was (now) Sir Graham Day, who was back in Canada after working as Managing Director for the big U.K. Cammell Laird shipyard in the mid-70s, and would soon go back there to run/sell off British Steel for Mrs. Thatcher and then later take on the job as Chairman of British carmaker Rover Group. For such a high-powered type he was remarkably approachable and easy to talk to, through there was no doubt he was very sure of himself. I liked him a lot better than many in Britain did I suspect.

    Quite the story! Thanks for sharing that....

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  • PF_FlyerPF_Flyer Member Posts: 9,372
    Some advertising may be more effective than others. How about a blimp with the tag line, "Today's aerial coverage provided by the Saturn Lightship team. Saturn and their retailers hope you enjoy the race... (wait for it)... and the Vue :)


  • PF_FlyerPF_Flyer Member Posts: 9,372
    I'm betting that was a Goodyear with a vinyl wrap :)
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Member Posts: 64,481
    edited January 2019
    RE: Renault Ad ---mais non! The real reason Renault failed is that Renault management refused to install Americans to run their American operations. Had they drawn upon the skill of domestic talent, they might have sustained their one-year triumph of outselling VW! The French managers, as charming as they might be, did not understand things like efficient parts networks and dealer training and equipment. The Dauphine was every bit as capable as the VW Bug, which certainly succeeded on American highway and which engendered an entire generation of DIYers---so the excuses Renault made in that ad don't really hold water. It was arrogance that killed Renault IMO.

    Note: My Dad worked for Renault and brought all his skills from Packard and Lincoln Mercury. They simply did not listen to him or any other American in middle management.
  • ab348ab348 Member Posts: 18,913


    It was arrogance that killed Renault IMO.

    Note: My Dad worked for Renault and brought all his skills from Packard and Lincoln Mercury. They simply did not listen to him or any other American in middle management.

    The French? Arrogant?!? Sacre bleu!!!

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  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Member Posts: 64,481
    Yeah, I know. Knock us over with a feather.

    It's too bad. The Dauphine was 9/10th of a great little car, and it was in the right place at the right time. But you couldn't get it fixed and you couldn't get parts for it. The sales way way outran the service end of things.

  • fintailfintail Member Posts: 56,985
    Classic ad from when I was a kid:

    image
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Member Posts: 64,481
    Early turbo technology wasn't the best as I recall.
  • omarmanomarman Member Posts: 2,702
    The Dauphine was every bit as capable as the VW Bug, which certainly succeeded on American highway and which engendered an entire generation of DIYers---so the excuses Renault made in that ad don't really hold water.

    That's a good explanation of the real difference between success and failure for North America imports.

    Ironically when VW introduced the Rabbit in the U.S. it was, to me, just as weird as the Bug in its own way. Thing is that people liked VW. Both the Bug and Rabbit. And that didn't happen by accident or even by superior performance alone. Somehow America can love all things French except their cars.

    And whatever happened to VW in North America? I mean after the retro new Beetle.
    A time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing.
  • berriberri Member Posts: 10,165
    ab, back in the old days you had to pass a comprehensive case exam to get an MBA. I also recall the capstone course where the prof pitted the groups against each other. He graded the group presenting their case analysis, and then graded the other groups on how well they challenged the presentation. Kind of like moot court for aspiring business people I guess. Doubt much of that goes on today. Probably doesn't matter anyway because I think the MBA is fading away slowly. More than a few big universities are doing away with it, or at least the full time program. Not as big of a deal these days whether you have one or not.
  • sdasda Member Posts: 6,882
    I thought the '75 Renault R17 Gordini was a neat car. It had a removable fiberglass targa type roof and 5speed transmission. Others around that timeframe, I liked the Mercury Capri Ghia, w/V6 and sunroof and also liked the GM H-body cars, Monza, Starfire, Skyhawk with the V8 or V6.

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  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Member Posts: 64,481
    I had a Renault 16 (the one with a different wheelbase on the left side than on the right side (!!). Pretty neat car. You could detach the rear seat and hang it from the ceiling in order to turn the entire car into a gigantic hatchback.
  • sdasda Member Posts: 6,882
    While we were in France, dad had a Renault 16 TL as a company car. For the size it was very roomy. Typically French, soft seats, long travel suspension. It had carpet in the front and rubber mats instead of carpet in back. I remember manipulating the back seat to gain extra space, quite nifty. The wipers did not automatically park and would work with the ignition off. To get the wiper to park in the down position, one would have to turn the switch off when the wipers were on the down stroke. It had a manual rotary knob that could adjust the headlights up or down depending upon the load in the car. Mom hated it because the steering was so heavy. It was replaced with the new Renault 30 with the Peugeot/Renault/Volvo (PRV) V6 with a single bbl and 2bbl carb (3bbl total). It was rough running and swilled gas, though that wasn't an issue as it was a company car and the company dad was working with was working together with Elf oil. Regardless, dad liked the R30 a lot better than the R16.

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