October 25, 1968
With all the bailout news focused on automakers I thought it might be interesting to mix in a few auto ads from another era.
If the current look of the Volkswagon ad looks familiar you must have lived through the 1960’s. They have brought back the iconic look for today’s advertising. I can’t think of a carmaker that has gotten more mileage out of a design based in the 1930’s. The name tranlates to “people’s car” from German and was Teutonic answer to the Model T.
This ad says 1949 but the original designs date back to before World War II. In the early days, VW has often advertised a quirky but steady persona, now they have more than one generation of customer. Back then they had to reassure people that they would be around tomorrow. The original bugs were easy to work on, a high school friend and I restored an old one during a summer. It ran pretty well after Than evicted the mice from the engine.
This ad takes a swipe at the extinct carmakers Kaiser, Husdon and Nash and extols steady German engineering. American budget auto makers were under pressure from both Europe and Japan as the foreign automakers retooled their industries for economic strength rather than military power. In a nod to the American market they don’t brag about fuel economy, they talk about engine power being increased by 76%. I don’t think anyone at NASCAR lost sleep.
The dealer in San Luis Obispo at the time was Fred Lucksinger Motors at 895 Palm St.