Chevy's Motoramic styling for 1956 include a full width grille, large rectangular front parking lamps, new front and rear bumpers. The rear tail fins had inward angled dome shaped tail lights set into a decorative chrome housing. The left hand tail light housing hid the fuel filler.
The Bel Air, one of 20 body styles in 1956 had model nameplates and emblems on their rear fender tail fins.
QUEEN OF THE SHOW... AND THE ROAD!
The on going theme for this year was "The hot one's even hotter". And it certainly was hot back then. Sales were great and the car was great. The new small block engine was great too. Kind of a neat little dig at the competition if you think they may be represented by the young ladies that didn't win the beauty contest. Chevrolet always loved to promote their leadership even if it was in a scuttle way. This fine illustration was by Bruce Bomburger. Bet you wish you had one of these cars today.
SEATS A WHOLE BASEBALL TEAM BEAUTIFULLY!
What a nice and strong way to tell a seating story. No background but no need for a background in the illustration. Has all the warmth and feeling for America that Chevy was becoming known for. It would be quite a few years before baseball would become the theme for perhaps the most famous car commercial of all time. A nine passenger wagon that looked this good and had a Chevrolet price was something pretty special back then and if you have one now it is still pretty special and worth a ton.
CHEVROLET PUTS HILLS BEHIND YOU AND PLEASURE AHEAD!
This ad ran in the May issues of Saturday Evening Post, Life, and Look magazines with a very nice illustration by Fred Ludekens. I'll bet the information on the signs is correct. With the kind of exposure these ads got fake information would have generated considerable mail.
YOUTH, BEAUTY, CHEVROLET, ACTION!
Austin Briggs did this illustration. During this period he was at the top of his form and it shows here. I don't know who had this idea for a Chevy ad but it is a beauty and not the kind of situation that easily comes to mind. In '56 Chevy was the "Hot One" that was even "Hotter" and this played to the idea that it was a hot seller as well as a hot performer. This kind of story telling illustration for advertising has all but disappeared especially for car ads. It may be that computers have something to do with it. It's much easier to do some kind of abstract background and tack on a headline. Too bad illustrators are out of style and no longer play an important part in ads today.
WHAT YOU CAN LEARN ABOUT CARS FROM FIREMEN!
The theme for '56 was The Hot Ones Even Hotter with lots of emphasis on the new high performance engines available. What better way to get across the idea of top performance than to show Chevy as the tiger that leads the fire engines to the fire? I don't know who did the art but chances are it was one of Jim Hastings favorites from San Francisco. Maybe Stan Galli. The model is the "Two Ten" Sedan and one not usually shown as the principal illustration but in this case the hero. The Bel Air Hardtop is shown as the small illustration near the logo.
MORE PEOPLE NAMED JONES OWN CHEVROLETS THAN ANY OTHER CAR! (Are you keeping up with the Joneses?)
Chevrolet loved to run ads that claimed leadership and this was one of the very best. Too often claims of leadership are that and nothing more but this is done in such a disarming way it leaves you with a nice warm feeling for Chevy. The art is by Austin Briggs and is beautifully done. This ad ran in the September issues of many national magazines. Austin Briggs got $2,500.00 for the art. Imagine that.
JIM BERNARDIN - oldchevyads.blogspot.com