If you are still unsure how to best please that special someone in your life for Valentine’s Day, take some advice from car ads. As a Valentine’s Day treat for Curbside Classic readers, we’re dishing out a few heart-to-heart advertisements, full of helpful relationship advice and (more likely) a few laughs.
For example, to attain the affections of a lovely woman as shown above, try being cavalier about it – promise an enduring relationship and unsurpassed protection. That, along with a red rose, ought to do the trick… according to General Motors’ advice, at least.
On second thought, maybe GM isn’t quite an ideal matchmaker. The amusement factor here isn’t just the mildly provocative text and imagery, but that it’s promoting a… Cavalier VL. Yes, the entry-level J-car for folks who could do without unnecessary things like a radio or tinted glass. Not the type of vehicle that sends most car buyers’ hearts aflutter.
Ah, that’s more like it. I can see falling for a car with exciting color harmonies and a stout-hearted engine. But yes, it’s that Thunderbird Styling that would really warm my heart for a 1955 Fairlane convertible.
Well, at least this is an exciting-looking car that our heroine here is losing her heart for.
Heart-to-heart car ads weren’t just targeted to women – though ad agencies apparently thought that advertisements targeting men could dispense with heart graphics and roses. Still, the text’s personification of automotive traits is amusing:
“If the car is a fickle, unreliable, attention-demanding shrew he’s liable to be a little short on affection.”
“But if she happens to be a slim, lovely thoroughbred that performs like a dream, asks little, and is always ready to give her utmost, well… a man is only human, isn’t he?”
Well, that prose would make me spring for a charmingly well-mannered BMW any day!
We’ll conclude our Valentine’s Day special with a 2011 Honda Odyssey ad. As an Odyssey owner myself, I can confirm that this is a totally accurate depiction of minivan life. In fact, I left a trail of rose pedals leading to the sliding door just this morning.
OK, not quite. But I do give Honda credit for creativity here – it certainly defies the frazzled-parent minivan stereotype.
Regardless of whether you’re commemorating Valentine’s Day this year, hopefully these ads brought some enjoyment. And who could ask for anything more for Valentine’s Day than that?
The Cavalier VL is the perfect Valentine for that Amish or Mennonite lady – not shown in ad, btw!
She’d have to take off the wheel covers. Can’t be flashy! But seriously, I live in Iowa where there is a large population of Amish and Mennonites. The Amish won’t own a car but have no problem being driven in a car by a non-Amish. The Mennonites will have cars, but depending on the sect will have the radios and wheel covers removed and black tape will be applied to any chrome as well as any badging removed.
Evil Ron: So that must mean that out here in Los Angeles area we must have a lot of Mennonites based on bland cars running around with the emblems removed, missing wheel covers or they paint the rims an ugly flat black along with any nice bright trim. haha.
Cavalier VL: Show her that your love is simple, plain, has no options and has the same longevity as this Chevy.
Have of all marriages end in divorce and Cavaliers had a cockroach like ability to run a long time, albeit badly. So….
Cavalier VL: When you have more than one single lady this Valentine’s Day.
The Cavalier VL ad is almost as pandering and patronizing as the old Virginia Slims “Remember when…” campaign. Just awful.
The Cavalier VL ad looks Canadian, the warranty limit is in kilometers.
2011 Honda Odyssey, if this van’s a rockin’…
The base VL’s without ding guards are just waiting for shopping carts, swinging doors, and fenders to beat it up. 😉
The Honda Odyssey portrayed in the ad doesn’t have ding guards either, but it gets a pass (it shouldn’t) as nearly all modern cars lack ding guards. I guess the humble Cavalier VL was ahead of its time (in a bad way).
Both the woman and the Cavalier appear to have been in a nasty accident involving highly radioactive matter. I am not sure how else one would become all aglow over a low-end Cavalier.
Yes, the Honda describes minivan life at my house too. We are planning to share a valentine dinner in ours tonight. Um, yeah.
The first one reminds me of something from the movie “Crazy People”.
“This relationship doesn’t need a passenger-side mirror because our love is only looking ahead, baby!”
Love can be so fickle…
I know I may be showing my VW bias here but I think one of the best quotes about the relationship with a car are from the first Herbie movie, The Love Bug, from Dean Jones’ character.
“There’s a lot of gloop been written about, uh, the bond between a man and his automobile – and how he hates it sometimes, mostly how he loves it. He showers gifts on it in the way of accessories and all that. He gets hysterical if somebody scratches the paint or – makes it lose face on the freeway”