Chevy Once Used the Power of Cat Videos to Sell Corvairs

The modern internet as we know it can best be thought of as a sophisticated global distribution system for cat videos and pornography, with some sideline abilities to order products and receive electro-encoded letters. The human desire to control emotions via recording cat actions on film, however, pre-dates the internet, as this 1965 Corvair video demonstrates:

I love Corvairs, but I’m not sure if I’ve ever really thought of them as particularly feline?

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The ad is interesting because the emphasis on “agility” is likely a direct result of Ralph Nader’s complaints about the first-generation Corvair’s swing-axle, rear-engine handling, which he felt was quite dangerous, and wrote just that in his book Unsafe at Any Speed.

The Corvair in the commercial there is the first of the redesigned, second-generation Corvairs that replaced the original swing-axle suspension with a very Corvette-like independent rear suspension.

This took care of the biggest handling issues with the Corvair, but the damage was done, and not all the agile Siamese cats in the world would help the Corvair fully recover.

If only Keyboard Cat existed back then, maybe the Corvair would have had a better chance.

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About the author

Jason Torchinsky

Senior Editor, Jalopnik • Running: 1973 VW Beetle, 2006 Scion xB, 1990 Nissan Pao, 1991 Yugo GV Plus • Not-so-running: 1973 Reliant Scimitar, 1977 Dodge Tioga RV (also, buy my book!)