Posts from ‘DeSoto’

Coolest Dashboards

1955 Packard

by Frank Peiler

In the early days of the automobile, dashboards were just that: wooden planks onto which gauges and switches were mounted.

By the early Thirties, wood dashboards were replaced by steel, and designers began to take an interest in the collection of dials and knobs located there.

1941 DeSoto, Classic DeSoto Ads

1941 DeSoto

I was born in 1965, and to the best of my memory, I never saw a DeSoto being used as a daily driver. Of course, cars didn’t last quite as long in those days, and by the time I was paying attention to cars, the last of the DeSotos would have been almost 10 years old.

1956 Buick Special Wagon, Classic Ads From 1956

1956 Buick Special Wagon

The emergence of automotive tail fins can be attributed in a large part to America’s fascination with air and space travel. At the dawn of the jet age, it was common for manufacturers to hawk their wares–automotive and otherwise–with references to fighter planes and rockets.

1960 Buick Ad, Classic Ads From 1960

1960 Buick Ad

One might have assumed that, back some six decades, the realism of television might have served to protect the more fantastic qualities of print advertising. Especially automotive print ads, where dazzlingly illustrated cars with wonderfully exaggerated proportions were set into equally improbable landscapes.

1959 Hertz ad with Chevrolet, Classic Ads From 1959

Hertz ad featuring a 1959 Chevrolet

It’s has come to be known as the “Eisenhower Recession,” though its impact was felt well beyond U.S. borders. The brief but significant economic downturn impacted every aspect of American commerce and industry in 1958, especially the auto industry.

1958 Dodge Ad, yellow, Classic Ads From 1958

1958 Dodge Ad

Question: What do the Turkish passenger ship Üsküdar, United Airlines Flight 736, and Ford have in common? Answer: All three were involved in disasters in 1958.

1955 Chevrolet Biscayne Concept Car, 1955 Auto Brochure

Identify this 1955 concept car for one bonus point.

You know the drill–we give you an abstract portion of a brochure page, and you have to guess the vehicle featured. For this quiz we’re featuring the cars of 1955. All the vehicles in question were available for sale in the U.S. We can also tell you that none of the cars here are especially rare, obscure, or of a kit-car nature.

Chrysler Print Ad

This detail of a 1939 Chrysler ad could well have been part of the boat-ride scene from “Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory,” though it likely wasn’t meant to be as unsettling.

I have long believed that a part of America’s innocence died when automakers began using photography in advertising instead of drawings.

1960, Red Car Ads

1960 Willys Jeep brochure

Folks don’t buy a lot of red cars, but they do like to look at them. According to automotive paint supplier DuPont, red was only the fifth most popular new-car color in 2012. The most popular? Plain vanilla while. Snooze.


Only Canadian consumers had access to this tidy-looking DeSoto.

By now you probably know the drill; We give you an abstract portion of a brochure cover, and you have to guess the vehicle featured. For this quiz we’re featuring cars that were available to Canadians, but NOT Americans.