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Hagerty
Hagerty Employee

Chevy's restoration-themed holiday ad is major tearjerker

"Holiday Ride" is Chevy's latest shot at winning over the hearts of American car buyers. The emotional spot is 4 minutes long and has amassed nearly 4 million views on YouTube over the last week, inspiring untold numbers of unexpected waterworks.
https://www.hagerty.com/media/entertainment/chevys-restoration-holiday-ad-tearjerker/
45 REPLIES 45
tommykat1
Intermediate Driver

I thought the ad was OK but contrived. More of a fantasy than down to earth. Car gets hauled away in the middle of the night and the owner doesn't know it's missing for the (ho-hum) three or four days it takes to restore it to new. Uh... that would be at least a year and more likely three. Heck the paint job alone would be a couple of months if done correctly. I would like to have shed a tear, but restoring a car takes a ton of resources and time, and this trivializes the effort.
Rick2
Instructor

It is meant to be a heart felt salute to family and friends at a joyous time of year. Not a restoration video. Merry Christmas anyway.
99MiataAE
Pit Crew

Loosen up, enjoy life.

ModelT
Advanced Driver

It's way shorter than we imagine. I wish my kids would have one of my cars redone. I'm also alone with memories of my wife bringing snacks, drinks, tools, and encouragement as I played in the garage with an old car.
Orict0015668
Intermediate Driver

Wow, what a killjoy.
Bound4Glory
New Driver

Watch it again, and pay attention, maybe you’ll figure it out, a whole year passes. Science class must’ve been tough for you.
Merry Christmas!
MTB_dude62
Pit Crew

Exactly!
buellerdan
Advanced Driver

paralysis by analysis
avideo
Detailer

Best commercial I've seen in a long time. Even better than the usual Budweiser Clydesdale commercials.
Studenorton
Instructor

I am afraid the new management may have eaten the Clydesdales.
GoFast
Advanced Driver

Loved everything about the ad EXCEPT storing the car with the top down and driving it post resto on such a dusty road.
avideo
Detailer

There is nothing wrong with storing a car with the top down. I own a fully restored 

1966 Corvette convertible that I keep in the garage with the top down.  It's won dozens of awards at car shows over the years and has been dirty from less than ideal roads and driving conditions. It only takes a couple hours of cleaning and detailing to put it back in show-type condition. 

     After all, it's a car - not an antique - and was meant to be driven. 

roadio55
Intermediate Driver

How often does he change that wreath? I think perhaps only on Christmas each year and that's the only time he looks at the car. As for the dusty road, if that's where you live, that's where you drive. I know I saw another ad recently in which Dad's old car is restored as a surprise, and that one fit in a normal time slot. Happy Holidays, everybody!
ModelT
Advanced Driver

We retired to Florida. Drove a Model T and other cars down lime rock roads many times to car events. Even had the top down on one of them. We all don't have a mansion on a hill with a paved highway.
That ad got to me! I might go out and buy a Chevy..... or a wreath!
hyperv6
Racer

I am not one for sappy commercials but this one hit the mark. 

What is funny is I knew a guy with an old Impala he had fixed up. He lost his wife and he kept the car up in her memory as she had helped him restored the car and show it. 

Better than the usual contrived Christmas sale commercials of Lincoln and Benz with puppy dogs and kids. Benz finally got a new commercial this year as the old one they just CGI updated the cars. 

ModelT
Advanced Driver

My wife and I looked for a red Model A for 60 years, off and on. After she passed away, to help me get through it all, I found one and called her MissDollie. Sometimes things really happen that we see in commercials.
JakeSoberay
New Driver

And that’s the truth!!
JBBearcat
Detailer

I can't believe it's a car commercial...
No "DO NOT ATTEMPT, Professional Driver on a closed course" advisory.
Merry Christmas!
Andretti
Intermediate Driver

A wonderful video to watch, especially this time of year with everything happening.
DC
Detailer

Ranks up there with
“Chevy Runs Deep”
of a few years back.
Mozeby75
Pit Crew

No LS swap? 😂 Good video none the less.
golfnut53083
Intermediate Driver

brought tears to my eyes (and I'm a Ford guy!!)
ModelT
Advanced Driver

If it's got wheels I like it.
<----- There's two of mine.
ThumperUSMC
Intermediate Driver

Yeah, you were right. It grabs you by the feels. I just became a widower this past September.
I gave her favorite toy, her 1980 Corvette, to my daughter. My daughter has been painstakingly restoring it to look like brand new, with a little help from me. That 42 year old paint looks like brand new, the interior is in the process of being completely redone and the aluminum wheels that were on it are being polished both inside and out and has new 225/70R15 tires waiting for them to be finished...
It will still be my daughters car, but will be like a brand new car.
Orict0015668
Intermediate Driver

Sorry for your loss, and cudos to you and your daughter for carrying on and becoming the caretaker for a cherished family possession.

ModelT
Advanced Driver

My wife and I bought a bright orange 1977 Vette after the kids left the nest. My best friend's GF has a '77 Vette just like ours was. I have mixed feelings when I see that car! My wife passed Sept 2020.
For some of us cars hold memories we can't forget.
Corvettebaggs
Intermediate Driver

A very enjoyable and heart-felt commercial. Sure beats a pharmaceutical commercials letting you know that the side effect of this product is your arms growing to the point you'll drag your knuckles.
Rayjay
New Driver

Tommy some people just don’t get it. Give it a rest. It’s a wonderful piece and is perfect for the Christmas season.
Orict0015668
Intermediate Driver

Why somebody would pick apart a commercial such as this leads me to believe the Grinch lives in the minds of those that would tear it apart. As far as I am concerned, it is a story of love lost, remembrance, and a cherished symbol (in this case, and automobile) that both had a singular affection. The man’s daughter recognizes her Fathers’s ongoing feeling of loss and how that car brings him closer to his lost love’s memory, and takes it upon herself to bring that memory alive in some small way. She seeks the assistance in the journey and finds those that freely give of themselves in the completion of the car’s rebirth. When the Father discovers the Impala as he remembered it, along with the photo of his lost love, he is overcome, and realizes his daughter’s love is just as strong. Perhaps the nay sayers could get beyond the nitpicking and see the commercial for what most everybody sees it as,  It leaves a smile on my face, and perhaps a little hope.

RSP657
New Driver

Beautifully said!
RSP657
New Driver

I saw the abbreviated version of this commercial on TV several times.
I just watched the entire version today (Christmas day).
I lost my mother the end of last month.
Today would have been her 93rd birthday.
With all the emotions I experienced in the past few weeks this commercial really hit me hard.
lewiswmx1a
New Driver

This is one of the better commercials that chevy has come up with. Doesn't mater how long or short the restoration took they got the point across. I am in the pross of restoring 2 El Caminos. I think they did a good job.
SJ
Technician

Nice commercial but I like the true life ones better.
deckerbilt
Intermediate Driver

Brought me to tears as my wife recently had a stroke and I don't know if she'll ever be coming home again.
ModelT
Advanced Driver

I've never believed in angels or other things. After my wife passed I found the car we'd dreamed of for over 60 years. The day she died she told us she was going home.
Somehow decker you'll get through this.
I hate commercials but this one brings back memories.
SilentBoy741
Instructor

A nice detail is how the dog happily hops into the dusty old derelict as if he's about to go for a ride. Sweet irony at its best.
dlanerx7
New Driver

This commercial is, more than anything else, about the passage of time—with the people and the cars we love being the markers.  A car can embody a constellation of memories and feelings, similar to what happens when you hear a song, or a melody from your past.  Unlike melodies, though, cars are physical.  They are tactile.  They dance with us. 

 

Unlike a loved one, you can bring an old car back to life.  For the man and daughter in the commercial, it was not just about rejuvenating the old Chevy.  For the daughter the restoration was filled with joyful thoughts and memories of her Mom.  For the Father, driving the rejuvenated Chevy flooded back the same physical and emotional sensations he had experienced during a less lonely time.  It is not the same dance as back then, but it’s a dance, nonetheless. 

 

We are car people.  Our lives are highlighted by our cars.  Our lives are enriched by the people we love.  Nothing is permanent, so find joy where you can--when you can.  Cement in place the memories that will keep you smiling in your later years.  And appreciate the work of the folks who conceived and produced this commercial.  The message is simple, and very human:

“We understand.”

BillR
New Driver

Loved it. Yes (like many, if not most stories, filmed & otherwise) it relies on contrivances, and viewers’ “suspension of disbelief”, which just sits more agreeably with some of us than others - I suppose the former can enjoy “A Christmas Carol”, in all its renditions, more than the latter, and perhaps both “Field of Dreams” and “Bull Durham”, equally. (And I mean to disparage neither “type” of us - we’re all different.) What touched me additionally were some of the responses it elicited - especially ThumperUSMC’s, golfnut53803’s and hyperv6’s, and I agree wholeheartedly with Andretti’s, and the top comment cited in the write up. Thanks, Hagerty, for highlighting Chevy’s effort - it deserves it.
mojocracker
New Driver

This is a concept/branding ad. It's art, not a documentary. I could not help but wonder, though, after viewing the :60 on TV, what the $$$ amount would be for a resto like this? Plus... did they repaint or polish and CC the existing paint? The after result looked like the former but the process in the :60 looked like the former.

Sorry if the longer YT rendition answers my questions Heading there now.

Merry Christmas fellow Hagertyites!!!
DUB6
Specialist

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Caprice81
Intermediate Driver

We all know that it takes longer to rehab a car that has been resting in a barn for years. The commercial wan't meant to be a literal interpretation. The intent is to remind us of better days from our past. Put the top down, turn up the radio and cruise into the past with our sweetheart..if only a memory. The commercial is touching and meant to pull at our heart strings reminding us that there is nothing more rewarding around the holidays than having good friends and a loving fmily. Cheverlet has surely capturd the heart beat of America! Happy Hidays!
Gary_Bechtold
Specialist

Who cut those damn onions near me?

Seriously I liked it and at least it remembers what a commercial is about. It can only help put positive feelings towards Chevy.
DUB6
Specialist

Now, if Chevy would just follow up by re-issuing 1966 Impala Convertibles, I'm betting that this commercial would drive tons of potential buyers to the showrooms!  😉

woodchuck
New Driver

Author Bryan Gerould did a masterful job in reviewing this classic work of the Chevrolet advertising crew using, one of the cleanest exterior designs ever to tell the story.
Our first two children came home from the hospital in that Caprice Super Sport – one of them to later become the mother of your fellow Hagerty writer, Nate Petroelje.
The six years we drove this classic design back and forth between Michigan and the East coast – kids rolling around on a back seat platform – were a joy, and selling it to one of my college students (so we could get a more family-friendly Country Squire) was not easy.
Watching the commercial created warm (and liquid) memories.
My only wish is that film clip producers would have kept the original Michigan license plate on the re-do.
compaqdeskpro
Detailer

That's the problem, how does GM see this commercial making them money? This isn't an ad for a "What If" 2 door Impala equipped with 6.6L V8 with hybrid assist, with a big brushed aluminum switch to turn off the gas engine in cities. GM still thinks the Bolt, an extremely unpopular and poorly built Prius competitor and a cool super priced limited production lifestyle truck are the future of the company. From GM's executive's standpoint, this commercial jerks tears but I don't think it moves the Chevy brand forward from "company that made cool cars in the past and Tahoes and Corvettes that are about to be discontinued".