Vintage Rootes automotive ads in Russian and English

LiveJournal Vintage Ads group member valaamov_osel scanned this 1961 Rootes automotive booklet that is inexplicably in both some Cyrillic language (I'm assuming Russian) and English. It's dozens of pages of pure vintage auto-ad gold, especially the heavy goods/passenger vehicles with names like "Gamecock" and "Avenger."

Rootes ad. 1961.


  1. While the Sunbeam Alpine was a really beautiful model, my first ever vehicle was an ancient blue Comma 3/4 ton van just like the one in the relevant picture. Spelled “Coma” on the insurance certificate.

  2. I want to ride in a bus called an ‘Avenger’. C’mon – let’s stop messing around and hit the road, there’s justice to be done!

  3. When I was a kid (I was born in 1962) they still used to use a lot of the Karrier dustcarts just like the ones illustrated, and my Dad had a Commer van with the Dormobile camper conversion as recently as ten years ago… it was horrendously underpowered, but the low gearing meant it could climb the steepest of gradients regardless… you just needed a bit of patience. :-)

  4. Yeah it’s russian.
    I’ve ssen these pictures a while ago, and was amazed a bit, because we never had such cars here. Yeah, most of the russian cars of that period were copies of us and uk models, but not the originals. Also it’s strange to see russian language (it’s a bit odd, but generaly translated okay) in western brochure from cold war times.

    hello from moscow

  5. Ooh … Commer trucks used perhaps the world’s strangest diesel engine, the Rootes-Lister TS3: a three cylinder, six piston, horizontally-opposed two-stroke blown engine, with indirect rocker drive to the crankshaft.

  6. I once bought a Commer Highwayman from Kelly Freas. Nice camper but I had to sell it about a year later when I got shipped to Germany.

  7. I loved to drive my Series II Alpine – it was the most fun car to drive I’ve ever owned.

    But I hated to maintain it.

  8. I noticed that in many of the illustrations that a woman is driving with a man as a passenger- very odd for that time (in car ads, that is). I wonder if these illustrations were originally drawn as RHD (right hand drive) but were altered to LHD for the target market by placing the arc of the steering wheel on the other side of the car.

    This could be my cultural bias- but in American car ads of that period, if there was a man in the car, he was doing the driving. When women drove it was either alone or in a station wagon with kids and a dog.

  9. Someone needs to do this for contemporary cars, a painting of the car instead of a photograph, gorgeous backgrounds and people in elegant clothes…

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