Ralf K. posted this muffler car at the Cohort, and it reminded me of so many other customized cars I’ve seen over the decades in front of businesses. What have you seen? In real life or one the web? Let’s see them.
Saw this productmobile in New Hampshire last Autumn. It is parade-driven from the saddle. Based on a 1931 Cadillac. Moxie is a soda pop that dates back to 1876.
I actually found Moxie in some random old-timey drugstore/soda fountain in Seaside, OR…just about as far as you can get from Maine and still be on the continent. They had all kinds of obscure regional treats: Green River, Moon Pies, Big Red, NY style egg cremes–which is what grabbed my Brooklyn-born lady friend’s eye. I went with the Moxie, having heard of it before. It’s definitely an acquired taste…reminds me of licorice, root beer and the smell of that tar/sealant on telephone poles and railroad ties. I finished the bottle but one time lasts a lifetime!
Oh yeah, it’s some rugged tasting stuff all right! It’s that touch of creosote that makes it so unforgettable. I tried it only once and that was enough for me, too. In some circles here in New England it’s heresy to say you don’t like it.
That’s how the word “moxie”, to mean grit or courage entered the American lexicon. You had to have moxie to drink Moxie.
HA! No doubt.
The official soft drink of the state of Maine!
This is the second such vehicle a Santa Monica shoe repair shop has been parking at the curb for many, many years.
Oh that poor little Honda Z!
Canadian TIre Ice Truck…
The 1947 Chrysler Saratoga Zippo cigarette lighter car comes to mind.
One of my very favorites. Possibly because I was a dedicated Zippo man during my smoking days. Zippo lighters and Fluid Drive Chryslers – possibly the two best products ever paired for promotional purposes.
Lighter Fluid Drive? 😉
Smoking while shifting is strictly prohibited!
A favorite of mine from the early days of motoring. It’s an oversize speedometer/odometer advertising the Warner Instrument Company, the predecessor of Stewart-Warner. It included a trip odometer.
Got to love a Mini that’s morphed into an orange!
They have grounds for a lawsuit against Google, they used tracing paper over that for their autonomous car!
A couple for those really large format photos…
These are both Model T Fords, too.
Saw this on Chasing Classic Cars…they claimed it was built by Ford but it actually was a lumber company that did it.
Here’s one based on a Model T.
Stardust skating rink in North Charleston had these parked out front for years
And here’s the other one
Another Model T Ford House Car/Office. This one comes complete with a front porsche. 😉
This Pacer eating a hamburger, sits outside Little Anthony’s in Tucson. Last time i passed by there in December, it was still there.
Renault Master TGV van built in ’85 by Durisotti (here is a pic found on the web from a scale model)
Here’s one that’s right up Paul’s alley. This happy chappie is promoting Pacific Homes Ready Cut kit homes in 1926 with yet another Model T Ford.
Seems like the muffler place could have saved themselves quite a bit of trouble and just used a fuselage Chrysler.
Oh, come on; nobody’s going to post the Oscar-Meyer Wienermobile?!
Surprised no one’s mentioned this yet. And yes, I actually have seen this before, but I don’t have a picture on my phone.
So much for hoping there’d be no Wiener Mobile mention or photo’s.
Am I (not) seeing things?? No one remembers the most famous of all of the advertising vehicles?
Ladies and gentlemen, presenting the Weinermobile. Still in operation, traversing the country even now. Been around for years. Kids love this thing, and flock to it everywhere it shows up.
I remember seeing (one of (?)) the Oscar Mayer wienermobiles around Seattle WA. in the early ’90’s. I don’t know if it ran. It just sat in a lot near downtown.
Here’s one of the first ones complete with the Oscar Mayer mascot, “Little Oscar”. It dates from about 1940…
I too am surprised it took this long to mention the Weinermobile. It was the first thing that came to my mind. I guess “baby boomers” have a different set memories.
Maybe it was just too obvious.
Well, I am in good company indeed!
I like that one which I see from time to time. The ad says “action for slim prices”.
There are a few around this area, but none quite as creative as what others are sharing.
Perhaps the best, even better than the Chevrolet Astro van whose wheelbase has been seriously abbreviated, is this Chevrolet El Rooster. It can be found along I-44 west of Rolla, MO, at the Doolittle exit.
LL Bean has the bootmobile. I don’t know how to post pictures.
Here ya go H,E & N. I didn’t know about this one!
Thanks! The bootmobile can be seen out Touring. It cruises at highway speed.
You’re very welcome H,E & N.
The “creator of the Bikini”, lingerie designer Louis Réard, commissioned a boat-like body from Henri Chapron in 1950 to promote his invention on the Riviera.
Built on a pre-war (I think) Packard chassis. The original land yacht?
Renault chassis for an insecticide spray, circa 1960
There are tons of these on francophone car forums… I’ll just have to pick out a few of the coolest ones.
Here’s the Hoover vacuum cars. Renault and Fiat chassis, built by Pourtout in 1963.
No info on this one, except it’s a Citroen U23 chassis….
Similar contents, different vessel, Renault chassis
Circa 1963 on a Citroen HY base
One more (the tape version)
Dig the old 3M logo! The 3 Ms of course are “Minnesota Mining and Manufacturing.” The name “Minnesota de France” on the door strikes me as awkward though – I wonder why they didn’t just go by “3M de France.”
Because it sounds American, which was a big deal in the Europe of the 1950s and into the 60s. American consumer products were what we would call “aspirational” today.
Renault chassis / butane gas, circa 1958
And another Butagaz, this time on a Renault Floride (rear-engined) chassis by Chapron in 1960. Six made!
Norev did reproduce all of these Renault-based advertising oddities in 1/43rd scale (expensive as heck). If you see above, the TGV van picture is from a Norev model, and also on a Renault chassis
A British one — Daimler chassis
A nice car (but no idea which one!) in mint condition
Not sure what the base is on this one either. Nicely done though.
And this on a ’29 Buick stretched chassis.
All of these are super cool.
All those French ones are so easy to find because they’re most likely Tour de France caravan cars from different years. About an hour before the peloton comes thru, you’ve got this caravan of advertising cars rolling thru at roughly the same speed (20mph or so).
Quite the show from what I understand. Unfortunately, American bicycle stage races don’t bother to go for this.
This car is in front a a cigar store in Phoenix. But I’m fairly certain I knew this car back in the early ’80s on the South Side of Chicago, when it was advertising Harold’s Chicken Shack, a fried chicken outfit.
That right there is condensed America in all the best and worst ways.
According to an article that appeared in the “Standard catalog of Cadillac” there were three “Land Cruisers” built by the Anheuser-Busch brewing company in the early 1930s. Two were built on Pierce Arrow running gear and one on a Cadillac chassis. Looks like a fun rig for a Sunday cruise!
This kind of vehicle was extremely popular in Italy during the 50s and 60s. Here are some pictures :
Gotta love all those.
We have our own local Muffler mobile!
The “Toe” truck from Seattle.
Here in OKC, there’s a bail-bondsman named Ken Boyer who uses a Ford Model A as part of his advertising schtick. It’s often parked outside his office.
Here’s the “Big Cart”, built to promote the “Got to be NC Agriculture” campaign. It shows up at the state fair, farmers’ markets, and other various events. That’s a Chevy 396 V8 underneath providing the power. This photo isn’t mine but I’ve seen it in person–very impressive.
Love it. The ‘driver’ is facing in the wrong direction though. 🙂
I bet THAT would put a wicked ding in your door in the parking lot.
I’ve always wondered where the inspiration for the 1941 Chrysler Thunderbolt came from.
And then, buildings shaped like cars:
There’s a coffee table book in all of this . . . .
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