The automakers don’t do crazy promotional films like this anymore, but we wish they did. See a team of pro stunt drivers go to town on the new 1958 Edsel in this original Ford clip. Big fun!
In the fall of 1957, the Ford Motor Company issued forth a whole catalog of promotional films to trumpet its new (but short-lived, unfortunately) Edsel division. Here we have one of the more entertaining examples. Titled Strictly for Stunts, the 10-minute film features thrill show veteran Al Gross and his team of touring professional stunt drivers, who proceed to beat the snot out of a small fleet of brand-new Edsels for our viewing pleasure.
Staged at Ford’s Dearborn Proving Grounds (still in use by the automaker today and known as the Ford Dearborn Development Center), the film features the classic repertoire of thrill show tricks. Check out the ramp stunts, precision formation driving, and the spectacular-looking reverse turn, also known as the J-turn.
There’s also a simple but effective demonstration of the Edsel’s self-adjusting drum brakes, a rather new feature from the Motor City in those days, first used by Ford on the 1957 Mercury. The pièce de résistance of the production, if you will, is a corny but entertaining bit in which a housewife pulls four fully loaded concrete mixers (Ford trucks, naturally) with a Citation convertible. The Edsel was ultimately a flop, alas, but this promotional reel is a winner in our book. Video below.