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50 Great 1960s Volkswagen Ads

Volkswagen had a years-long series of counterintuitive ads in the 1960s that played up how different the Beetle and the Microbus (then called simply the VW and the VW Station Wagon) were from every other vehicle. The ads were very different from standard automobile advertising as well, because the headlines were often so strange that you were forced to read the fine print, where the car's apparent drawback was explained to be an asset in disguise. While other companies enticed buyers to upgrade with new designs each year, this ad appealed to thrifty drivers by showing how VW replacement parts work with every model. One ad shows a man pushing his Bug, with the headline "And if you run out of gas, it's easy to push." In the small print, they explained that this year (1962) the company has installed a gas gauge in its new vehicles. Before that, you ran out of gas and then flipped a lever to use the reserve tank to get to a gas station. But that's one reason why a new Beetle cost around $1,500 at the time -about a thousand dollars less than other new cars. Link

(Image credit: Flickr user James Vaughan)


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