Sep
26
Vintage Checker Marathon ad
1967 Checker

There’s something wonderfully countercultural about Checker, and a certain irreverence shows up in the company’s advertising. For the most part, Checker, which was established way back in 1922, sold its wares to fleet users, most famously those operating taxi services.

Every now and then, however, Checker made a pitch to the public, asking consumers to consider driving their durable, familiar, and utterly dated-looking vehicles in lieu of the latest offerings from Detroit.

It’s easy to see the appeal of these utilitarian sedans and wagons to the select few Americans who didn’t own TVs and made their own clothes, but for the most part, the general public stayed away en masse. In retrospect, Checker’s efforts to reach a civilian audience were akin to trying to get a teenage girl to wear her grandmother’s Hushpuppies to prom.

A few of Checker’s very practical sales pitches can be enjoyed below. Personally, I wish far more Checker Marathons had made their way into consumers’ garages. Seems most of those pressed into taxi service were used up and crushed. Today, a good-condition Marathon is a relatively rare find.

Is Checker Back? You Be The Judge

 

1960

1960 Checker Marathon Ad
1960 Checker Ad

 

1961

1961 Checker Marathon
1961 Checker Ad

 

1963

1963 Checker Ad
1963 Checker Ad

 

1963

1963 Checker Ad
1963 Checker Ad

Gallery: Cool Cars at Fun Places

 

1965

1965 Checker Ad
1965 Checker Ad

 

1967

1967 Checker Ad
1967 Checker Ad

 

1969

1969 Checker Ad
1969 Checker Ad

 

1980

1980 Checker Ad
1980 Checker Ad

More classic ads

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