The International Scout 80 is adorable, capable off-road, and easy to work on. But it's also brutally uncomfortable, slow as a sloth going to the dentist, and barely safer than walking blindfolded across the highway. This commercial might have been a slight oversell 50 years ago, now it's just funny.
I wonder what context this would have been shown at, anyway. Who would have sat through two and half minutes of hearing the same sentiment re-worded over and over again?
Pretty great to see that the "spacing of headlights" was advertised as an advantage. That doesn't come up often enough any more. So what else sold trucks in the 60's that we can laugh about today:
"Handles like a passenger car."
"This is about the least-connected vehicle I think I've ever driven." –Edmund's Inside Line Senior Editor Josh Jacquot, driving a '68 Scout 800 used in Fast Five.
I would have to disagree and give that title to the '65 Volkswagen Beetle my grandfather once owned, but I'll concede that a first-gen Scout, even without a lift, is pretty loose. Like, Captain Ron after his third spliff of the morning kinda loose.
"Safe and smooth beyond all belief."
Maybe compared to getting dragged behind a horse on roller skates. Here's how royally fuct this truck's grandson performed in IIHS testing more than a decade later.
"Scouts ride in comfort."
The driver's seat is adjustable back-and-forward through a range of about four inches with no recline. From there holding the steering wheel is like bear-hugging a super-sized Olive Garden pizza, which is obviously not tilt-adjustable until the support below it rusts out.
"Scout is all muscle with no excess poundage."
Well... if you count rust as a weight reduction (and who wouldn't! Glass half full, y'all). As for "all muscle," 32 horsepower per liter was apparently enough to make the Scout 80 heave 1,000 pounds of payload and (or?) hit 80 MPH on pavement... anyone brave enough to try it?
"Safe to drive, good to ride in."
"She's a wobbler! I would not want to have to drive this very fast... it gives me a new respect for stunt men." –Josh again.
"Superb performance and economy... Scout has plenty of get-up and go when you need it to get you there in a hurry!"
My how times have changed!
Want to read more about Scouts? You're an American hero:
Hat tip to the Scout 80s/800s Facebook Group, one of the best places on the internet.