Consumerism Retrospectives TV

There’s at least a dozen ways to save our petrol

M was telling me about an ad from the 70s telling people to save petrol. I had absolutely no recollection of it, but sure enough, Mr Youtube had it…

What a cracker! I couldn’t figure out why they made the cartoon people nude, but a comment suggested it was to grab people’s attention.

Perhaps I just never took any notice because such concepts were irrelevant in my family.

I assume it was devised in the wake of the 70s oil shocks.

Despite the jingle, I only count six ways of saving petrol noted in the ad (and it mentions carpooling twice). Maybe there were others quoted in print or other complementary advertising.

By Daniel Bowen

Transport blogger / campaigner and spokesperson for the Public Transport Users Association / professional geek.
Bunurong land, Melbourne, Australia.
Opinions on this blog are all mine.

9 replies on “There’s at least a dozen ways to save our petrol”

Do you remember the political cartoonist Larry Pickering?

The drawing style looks like his, it was about the right era, and he had a penchant for drawing his characters nude in exactly that way.

Every year he published a calender with satirical nude portraits of politicans. I can remember the discussion in the media when, one year, he used Prince Charles for one month, complete with royal blue bow around the royal member. I vaguely remember that Charles asked for (and got) the original.

Duh. 3 milliseconds after posting my comment I notice the year 1979 is in the title of the video.

I remember that now that I’ve watched it. Another one I recall but can’t find online featured Peter Wherrett talking about how many of those large oil refinery tanks we went through each day(?).

@Andrew said:
“The voice sounds very familiar.”

I’m fairly sure the voice is that of Allan Johnston, the “Jo” half of the Mojo advertising agency. The “Mo” half was the late Alan Morris.

You can recognise the voice in several other classic ads: World Series Cricket (“Come on Aussie, come on”), Meadowlea (“You ought to be congratulated”), Hershey bars (“You can’t hide a Hershey smile”). among others.

I have a videotape lying around somewhere, a parody of the Hershey’s ad where the jingle has been turned into “You can’t hide a herpes smile.” And it’s the same voice singing, so it’s definitely Mojo spoofing their own ad. Maybe one day I’ll dig it out and post it on YouTube, if someone hasn’t beaten me to it.

I had totally forgotten this “save petrol” ad until Daniel posted it, and the animation rang no bells with me at all (not even the naked people). But as soon as I started playing it, I remembered the jingle well enough to be able to sing along with the ad “Let’s all get together, this one’s for Australia”, so obviously I had heard it before.

Oh classic!! As soon as I saw the first still image before I even hit play, I remembered it and vaguely recalled the jingle but if someone had quizzed me about a ‘ways to save our petrol ad’ from the 70’s with animation, I don’t think I would have remembered that they were all starkers!! Jeez it was a different time. And yes, Bonnie, it’s definitely the ‘C’mon Aussie C’mon’ voice!


Yes, I recognised the voice from other songs mentioned above, but I didn’t remember this ad. Probably because I didn’t really watch TV until the 80s (I was old enough, but we just didn’t have a tv until 1979, and there was no commercial station anyway).

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