In this latest collection of dream cars and nightmares, all the vehicles have something to sell. Are you buying? Let’s take a closer look at these strange yet compelling machines.
Product promotion vehicles, or brand affinity vehicles as they are sometimes known in the biz, are nearly as old as the automobile itself. They date back to the time when cars themselves were novelties, and smart promoters quickly recognized their marketing power. Cars could be modified to take the form of all sorts of products, from shoes to milk bottles, creating effective and highly mobile sales platforms. The practice still works today.
Some promo vehicles have become famous in their own right—the Oscar Mayer Weinermobiles, the Zippo Chrysler. Many were so popular that they evolved through multiple design generations, like the Life Saver and Chicken Dinner Candy vehicles.
Promo car designs range from the bizarre, like the Moxie soft drink automobiles that were driven from mock horseback, to the almost attractive. We wouldn’t call the Wienermobiles beautiful, necessarily, but in their own way they are enjoyable to look at, and that’s one definition of beauty. As designer Brooks Stevens once said, “There is nothing more aerodynamic than a wiener.” Gallery below.