If you foolishly thought Boating was the great American sport for 1968 this Pontiac Firebird commercial from the same year was quick to correct. The great American sport for '68 was actually "wide-tracking".
Pontiac first advertised their "wide track" design for the 1959 model year. As part of a complete General Motors redesign for ‘59, the new Pontiacs were long, sleek and five inches wider than the previous year's model. Pontiac spoke of the improved styling and performance of the "wide track" models and the concept became a mainstay of Pontiac advertising throughout the 1960s.
Although it was introduced in 1959, it would be another nine years until the wide-track would become a verb and Pontiac would celebrate wide tracking as the great American sport. The company used this 1968 Firebird commercial to announce both. We aren't sure if Pontiac was trying to convince the luxury boating enthusiast to buy a Pontiac instead or if the creative department at Pontiac's advertising agency was just caught up in the 60s.
Either way, if you wanted to get involved with "wide-tracking", the ‘68 Firebird was the way to do it. If you wanted to know what wide tracking was first, the very serious narrator who appears to love white clothing and Firebirds as much as he hates boating explains
"It's the difference between ordinary driving and driving a car like this new 1968 Pontiac Firebird. Wide tracking is the way the '68 handles, corners and maneuvers with a new and improved ride you won't believe until you try it."
Besides the obvious fact that wide tracking no longer sounds like the great American sport it was cracked up to be, we can't help but noticed the clean cut youths appear to be wide tracking on their way to go boating, the other great American sport. Perhaps like the world in 1968, they weren't truly ready for wide tracking. Whatever you call it and regardless of your misplaced feelings about boating,we sure wouldn't mind spending some time top down cruising in a '68 Firebird.