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Totally cool and cringingly cheesy — sometimes at the same time — 1970s car magazine ads have a style all of their own.

The ’70s was a great time for car mags: brilliant content, a number of new styles and, of course, the adverts! Many made us cringe, others were ice-cool, and plenty saw the appearance of the era’s ‘big names’ too. Our research has also shown just how far we’ve come in the last 30-odd years — for example, most pages were black and white, with colour ads the preserve of big fags ’n’ oil companies who splashed the cash to punt us their wares.

Roll your eyes and revel in the the glory days with these 1970s car magazine adverts!

1970s car magazine adverts

A celebrity advert for an extremely well-known brand that’s still going and still very good. You have to question whether Ronnie Peterson really plopped his own car up though!

Probably the best-looking slot-style wheel ever from one of the major customising suppliers, and demonstrated by this ice-cool advert that just makes you want them.

1970s car magazine

Surprising how many legendary names advertised their services — we found plenty for Uren, Allard, Willment, Vulcan and this one for Broadspeed. This was the tuning and customising era, don’t forget.

1970s car magazine

There can’t be many adverts that totally sum up the ’70s era: psychedelic artwork and an extremely cool product. I remember using their candy colours, they really worked too!

Colin Chapman was a god back then, and this was a high-profile advert — hard to believe that what’s portrayed is state-of-the-art Formula 1. Superb rally jackets, sideburns and comb-overs!

Ahh, defraction tape! So ’70s and typical you could buy it on massive rolls. Loads of rubbish stickers spoiled the image but it’s the era summed up — very, very cool!

Cosmic were massive back then — those five-spoke Mk2 alloys are really rare now although some of those accessories look a touch dodgy. The ‘lack of space’ solution looks like recipe for dented roofs!

Words and Photos Jon Hill

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