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Tom Vandergriff at car dealership in Arlington, Texas

Arlington Auto Aisle was a Big Influence in the City's Economy

This article appeared in a special edition of The Arlington Citizen-Journal published in February 1972, on the occasion of the 75th anniversary of the newspaper.

“Take a ten-minute trip
Down the Arlington Strip
A thousand cars in half a mile
And a “Silver-Wheel Deal” that’s really worthwhile
Arlington, Arlington, Arlington, Arlington Auto Aisle”

For many years, the above jingle was the theme of joint advertising among new car dealers of Arlington. The jingle was termed by auto industry spokesmen at the time to have been the most dramatically successful promotion in automobile sales history.

Members of the Arlington New Car Dealers Association pooled their advertising dollars to draw business to the row of new automobile showrooms along Division Street. This pooled advertising program began in 1961, and lasted for seven years, until 1968. The basic jingle around which the advertising program was created, ran frequently on radio and television. The program greatly influenced their business and the economy of Arlington.

Participating in the joint promotional campaign were Vandergriff Chevrolet, Vandergriff Buick, Luke Pontiac, Butts Oldsmobile-Cadillac, Ken Nowell LincolnMercury-American Motors, Arendale Ford, Morris Volkswagen, and Mid-City Chrysler-Plymouth.

Former Vandergriff Chevrolet Dealership at Collins and Division Streets

Other features of the noted automobile promotion over the years included auto shows, Arlington Auto Aisle nights at Spur baseball games, for which Arlington dealers gave free tickets, and the selection of a Miss Arlington Auto Aisle.

Jack Holmes and Associates, a Fort Worth advertising agency, coordinated and planned the joint advertising by the aggressively promotional auto dealers of Arlington. Frank Luke of Luke Pontiac, discussing the promotion recently said, “It was a good thing for us back then before the metropolitan area cities grew so closely together.”

The Arlington New Car Dealers Association still exists, although the highly successful promotion which they created in 1961 had outlived its drawing power by 1968.