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Who killed the lady’s car?

September 9, 2013


The world’s first automotive journey was made by a woman. Now, after more than a century, women are in the driving seat again, challenging the male dominance of the car industry. For the first time in history the number of female drivers in the US surpassed the number of men on the roads and over two thirds of new cars are bought by women these days. The time has come for the industry to tap this resource.

They have tried it before. During pivotal years for car manufacturing in the mid 50s, the marketers came up with the idea of a car tailored specifically for women. La Femme, pink and lavender coupe with clear plastic skylight, equipped with a set of girlish accessories, was born. The buyers could decide whether their lipstick and cigarette case will be made of faux tortoise shell or pink calfskin. Everything from handbag, raincoat to umbrella that came with the purchase, matched the interior. Advertised as “By Special Appointment to Her Majesty… the American Woman.”, the project turned out to be a complete failure, with only 2,500 cars sold. The Chrysler marketing department, who brainchild La Femme was disappointed.

Was the reason for such a blow a boycott? La Femme was not advertised in magazines, on television and radio as other cars of the period. Even more, instead of demonstration vehicle for dealership showrooms, Dodge dealers received only a single sheet pamphlet. Who killed La Femme remains a mystery. But today is another chance to get the lady’s car right.


From → Hic Salta

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  1. Is there a car for women? | feminet

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