1960 GMC Bus
1960 GMC Bus

Per ride-hailing giant Uber, the company’s drivers provide patrons an amazing 15 million rides daily. And that’s just Uber–similar firms, such as Lyft, Via, and Juno, are shuttling plenty of people around as well.

At the risk of sounding old and cranky, I recall a time when the only reasonable alternative to driving yourself was the bus. When I was a kid, taxis were considered too expensive for ad-hoc jaunts, so we took the bus.

Perhaps because I was a kid, I enjoyed riding on the bus. Sometime around 1970, when I was 4 or 5, my mother took it upon herself to help the members of our extended family (all of whom were Germans from Serbia) earn their citizenship papers. This process required countless trips from our house in Chicago’s Rogers Park neighborhood to downtown Chicago, and each of those treks involved what seemed to be equal parts bus and train travel.

I’m sure that if I was committed to daily bus travel today I would feel differently, but I rather miss spending time staring out the window at the passing urban landscape.

To help celebrate the underappreciated bus, we have collected here a gallery of ads hawking the big people movers.  It’s worth noting that some of the manufacturers seen below, such as Ford and GMC, primarily provided the chassis on which bus bodies were installed, while others, such as Oneida, produced only the bodies.

In terms of classic ad art, Trailways and Greyhound produced countless colorful ads featuring classic busses set in scenic locales—an obvious subject for a future Daily Drive blog post.

Speaking as a Chicagoan, I recall a time when busses like the ones seen in the 1969 GMC ad below seemed to comprise half of all the vehicles on the city’s streets. They were all green and silver, and always lightly dusted with diesel soot.

More classic ads

Classic Bus Ads


1930 International

1930 International Ad
1930 International Ad (U.K.)

Model-Year Madness! 15 Sporty Car Ads from 1984


1931 Fargo

1931 Fargo Ad
1931 Fargo Ad (Canada)

Worst Car Commercials: The 80s


1941 White

1941 White Bus Ad
1941 White Ad

Pony-Car Madness! A Gallery of AMC Javelin Ads


1950 Fitzjohn

1950 Fitzjohn Ad
1950 Fitzjohn Duraliner Ad

4WD Madness! 10 Classic Lada Niva Ads


1960 GMC

1960 GMC Ad
1960 GMC Ad

Pentastar Madness! A Gallery of Classic Chrysler Ads


1967 Oneida

1957 Oneida Bus Ad
1967 Oneida Warrior Ad

Micro Madness! A Gallery of Classic Mini Car Ads


1969 GMC

1969 GMC Ad
1969 GMC Ad

Quicksilver Madness! 15 Classic Mercury Ads


1970 Scania

1970 Scania Ad
1970 Scania Ad (Norway)

Cocktail Madness! A Gallery of Cars in Liquor Ads


1970 Mercedes-Benz

1970 Mercedes-Benz Bus Ad
1970 Mercedes-Benz Ad

Feline Madness! A Gallery of Mercury Cougar Ads


1970 Wayne

1970 Wayne Ad , Wayne Papoose
1970 Wayne Papoose Ad

Nicotine Madness! A Gallery of Cars in Cigarette Ads


1971 Dealer Ad

1971 Bedford Ad, Classic Bus Ads
1971 Dealer Ad (Australia)

Pony-Car Madness! 10 Classic Firebird Ads


1980 Ford

1980 Ford Bus Ad, Classic Bus Ads
1980 Ford Ad

Bulldog Madness! 10 Classic Mack Truck Ads

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Classic Bus Ads

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