1979 and 1980 Corvette Ads and Trivia

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Today on the Vette Vues Blog we are looking at the 1979 and 1980 Corvette advertisements. We also are taking a look at Corvette ad proofs.

As we look at the 1979 and 1980 Corvette Ads and Trivia we remember that there was the worst commercial nuclear power plant accident in United States history. It unfolded on Three Mile Island in Pennsylvania near Harrisburg, about 35 miles east of the Carlisle Fairgrounds.  

The reason I mention the Carlisle Fairgrounds is that the world’s largest Corvette show takes place there once a year, Corvette’s at Carlisle, in August. If you are flying to the show, you can see the nuclear plant as you fly into Harrisburg International Airport. 

No big surprise that in September 1979, the largest anti-nuclear demonstration to date was held in New York City, when almost 200,000 people attended.

Jimmy Carter was our President, and Walter Mondale was our Vice President.  Tip O’Neill was the Speaker of the House, and the Senate Majority Leader was Robert Byrd.  For the first time in history a woman, Margaret Thatcher, was elected Prime minister in the UK.

In May 1979, the unemployment rate dropped to 5.6%; this was the low point for the late 1970s business cycle and the lowest since July 1974.  By December, the 30 Year Fixed Mortgage rate was at 12.9%. 

1979 Car Trivia

In April 1979, the Chevrolet Citation was released as a 1980 model available in two trim levels, and it was priced under $6,000.  Chevrolet sold over 810,000 of the 1980 Citation, making it both one of the most successful product launches in General Motors history, but also the best-selling car in the United States in 1980 overall. 

1979 Corvette Production Totals and Cost

The new 1979 Corvette sold for $10,220 base price and sold 53,807 units.  The 1980 Corvette sold for $13,140 and sold 40,614 units.

Gasoline was about $.88 per gallon in 1979.

China was once again in the news, and in 1979, China instituted the one child per family rule.

Many of you will remember the original Sony Walkman.  The portable cassette player allowed people to listen to music on the move.  The was a new and exciting revolution in music technology in 1979!  According to the internet, it originally sold for around $150.00 U.S dollars, and if you adjust for inflation, it was the equivalent of about $498.66.

In July 1979, the biggest hit was Donna Summer’s “Bad Girls.”

On May 27 at the Indianapolis 500 Rick Mears won the race for the first time, and car owner Roger Penske for the second time.

And on a happy note, McDonald’s introduced the Happy Meal, and the first Strawberry Shortcake doll went on sale.

1979 and 1980 Corvette Magazine Advertisements
1979 and 1980 Corvette Magazine Advertisements

We will look at four different ads for the 1979 and 1980 Corvettes. The First two are for 1979.

Our first 1979 Corvette advertisement we are going to look at is titled 1979 Corvette - The One and Only.
Our first 1979 Corvette advertisement we are going to look at is titled 1979 Corvette – The One and Only.
Our next 1979 Corvette ad is a poster advertisement.  This poster only sold for $5.95 including postage and handling and your option for paying was a check or money order.  It was full-color, 36" by 31".  The artwork is done by Ken Dallison.
Our next 1979 Corvette ad is a poster advertisement. This poster only sold for $5.95 including postage and handling and your option for paying was a check or money order. It was full-color, 36″ by 31″. The artwork is done by Ken Dallison.

The second two are Corvette magazine ads are for 1980.  We have a color one and a black and white ad proof.

This 1980 Corvette magazine advertisement is titled: Corvette 1980 and features a poem "In this ever-changing world, some things endure..."
This 1980 Corvette magazine advertisement is titled: Corvette 1980 and features a poem “In this ever-changing world, some things endure…”
1980 Corvette Advertisement that ran in black and white.
1980 Corvette Advertisement that ran in black and white.

What is a Corvette Magazine Ad Proof?

I asked Ladd about the ad proofs and found out that “There were people that got lots of them from Campbell Ewald and there were quite a few for sale from various people, but I haven’t seen any for a long time. ( I had heard that many were stolen from the files at Campbell Ewald and others were obtained legally. ) Many of the ones meant for newspapers were sent to Chevrolet dealers. Many of the better ones have the ad proof logo on the bottom and some on the top.” 

Here are some examples of ad proofs for you to see what Ladd is referring to.

Corvette Ad Proofs
Corvette Ad Proofs
Corvette Ad Proofs
Corvette Ad Proofs
Corvette Ad Proofs
Corvette Ad Proofs

Here are some links you might enjoy

Have you ever wondered how many Corvettes were produced each model year? Well, we have compiled a list of Corvette Production Numbers.

1953 Corvette Magazine Advertisements

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