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Video: Raleigh Chopper and Raleigh Burner feature in new Ford Fiesta ad

Spot includes a blink-and-you’ll-miss-it cameo from Team Sky’s Geraint Thomas

Raleigh’s iconic Chopper and Burner bikes feature in a new advert for the latest model of the Ford Fiesta.

The spot, from agency GTB UK, shows the car being driven along a streetscape that changes with the decades since Ford launched the model in 1977, and previous models of it and other Ford cars can be seen in it.

The Chopper represents the 70s, of course, the Burner the 1980s – a 35th anniversary limited edition was launched earlier this month and some of the 350 models produced have already appeared on eBay for rather inflated sums.

> Raleigh flamed as reissued Anniversary Edition Burners pop up on  eBay

A road bike brings the ad, called Together We Go Further, right up to the present day.

That bike isn’t a Raleigh – it’s a Pinarello, and it’s being ridden by Team Sky’s Geraint Thomas.

He’s not the only Team GB Olympic gold medallist to feature in the ad, either – gymnast Max Whitlock makes a cameo, too.

Appropriately, the motorist is portrayed by actress Keeley Hawes, who in the BBC series Ashes to Ashes played the role of Alex Drake, a police officer who was shot in 2008 and woke up to find herself in the 1980s.

Many of the comments to a Facebook post of the ad on Ford UK's page are from people fondly reminiscing about the Chopper or Burner they had as a kid.

Some also wondered whether Ford was guilty of revising history by showing some the Chopper and Burner riders wearing helmets, with adverts depicting cyclists without helmets at times being the subject of complaints to the Advertising Standards Authority – a ban on one was overturned in 2014.

> ASA overturns ban on ad showing cyclist without helmet

It’s not the only retro-themed advert out right now featuring bicycles – while watching the Tour de France these past few weeks, you may have seen this spot from British Cycling sponsor HSBC.

Simon joined as news editor in 2009 and is now the site’s community editor, acting as a link between the team producing the content and our readers. A law and languages graduate, published translator and former retail analyst, he has reported on issues as diverse as cycling-related court cases, anti-doping investigations, the latest developments in the bike industry and the sport’s biggest races. Now back in London full-time after 15 years living in Oxford and Cambridge, he loves cycling along the Thames but misses having his former riding buddy, Elodie the miniature schnauzer, in the basket in front of him.

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handlebarcam | 6 years ago

Can't say I noticed the bikes in what seemed to be a typical vomworthy nostaglia fest, with added celebrity philosophising, which is how most mega-corporations flog their shit these days. But it was nice of them to provide just the image I've been looking for...


The only trouble is, few who took their test in a Fiesta still drive one. For anyone who has done well enough to now own a Range Rover, that extra road space is more like half a metre.

don simon fbpe | 6 years ago
1 like

....And Keeley Hawes...

Edgeley | 6 years ago

Very sweet advert, not least because learners and cyclists aren't seen as the enemy,  but wouldn't it be nice if the driver/actor focussed on the road and not on the camera.

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