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Old 05-30-2018, 08:39 PM   #1
xoxoxoBruce
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May 31st, 2018: Tour de France Caravans

The Tour de France was created in 1903 by a French newspaper as a gimmick to sell more papers.
It was successful in attracting hoards of people to come out and watch, and it didn’t take long for companies to realize it was an
opportunity to put their product before all those eyes.



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In 1929 the race director of the Tour de France got together with the marketing director of the country’s leading chocolatier, Menier, to create the first parade of caravans promoting French products. A fleet of vehicles were seen by nearly 10 million people on the route promoting various goods and local businesses– and the tradition was born…


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The caravans have become more and more extravagant over the years, eventually spawning an official competition for the best publicity vehicle. They were built by the great coach builders of the time, such as Heuliez and Augereau, mounted on standard chassis by manufacturers such as Renault and Citroen.


They could show more people if it wasn't for those damn bicycle riders holding them up.

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Old 05-31-2018, 07:23 AM   #2
glatt
 
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Those are awesome. I never heard of them. That BIC car cracks me up for some reason.
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Old 06-02-2018, 03:58 PM   #3
Strahd Ivarius
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More pictures here: https://tourdefranceminiature.jimdo....-publicitaire/ (French site dedicated to miniature cars)

Don't miss the Patex car for 1987;-)

I have fond memories of the parade, not only because some cars where astonishing, but also because they were giving goodies...
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Old 06-02-2018, 07:52 PM   #4
xoxoxoBruce
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That's pretty cool, Strahd. I wonder who made those miniatures, toy/model companies to be sold as souvenirs or to collectors, or commissioned by the company sponsoring the vehicle to be handed out to important clients?

I have a set of three trucks that were commissioned by Weil-McLain Boilers to give at Christmas to their wholesalers.
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Old 06-09-2018, 03:43 AM   #5
Strahd Ivarius
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Some brands originated before WWII, like Dinky Toys.
In France, I remember Majorette, Solido, Jouef...

The Citroën auto manufacturer had its own brand: Compagnie Industrielle du Jouet, which later did miniatures for Renault.
In this case it was mostly toys intended as a way to promote the brands.

The tradition is still alive (in all the auto dealerships I visited I saw some models on display, for sale), but I don't know who is manufacturing the toys now.
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