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3-Wheelers on TV and at the Movies

Section 5: Adverts


A Bond Bug appeared in the 118118 (Directory Enquiries) advert.  The adverts used to feature two chaps as runners but now they are 1970’s retro cops that drive a Bond Bug.  The first advert in this style was aired on 12th March 2004 - just before the UK launch of the 2004 Starsky and Hutch film.

My thanks to Geoff Payne for sending in this picture.


Alberto Pizza

Alberto is a pizza company that has the Piaggio truck as a delivery vehicle. The vehicle is featured in several adverts on Germany TV. In one advert the Piaggo is seen airborne and is believed to be powered by a 110 bhp 750cc Kawasaki engine giving a top speed of at least 75mph.

My thanks to kerry Croxton for sending in this picture.



In February 2009, BFBS launched a number of media bytes advertising their new channel BFBS3.  A couple of these media bytes featured Reliant 3-wheelers of which mine (Elvis Payne) was one of them (more info).  One of the media bytes can be seen on YouTube.




In the Cadbury Bubbly advert “Welcome to Joyville” first shown in February 2012.  A number of purple Peel P50s are seen throughout the advert and even end up flying.



A Citreon advert in March 2004 advertising No VAT on their cars is set during a driving test.  Just before the examiner ask the driver to read a number plate a quick shot of the car park shows a red Reliant Robin.

My thanks to Geoff Payne for sending in this picture.


Coco Pops

Throughout 2009, Kellogs Coco Pops adverts showed dancing milkmen with 3-wheeled milk floats.


Ford Focus

A Ford Focus advert in January / Ferbruary 2007 had a 3-wheeler that looks like a Piaggio driving across the screen.

My thanks to Geoff Payne for sending in this picture.



This advert is one of my personal favourites. In this 1991 Hamlet Cigar masterpiece set in a fair ground, a Reliant Robin was driven by the main character of the advert. After the character parked his Robin knocking over a chain of motorbikes, a group of Hells Angels type bikers picked up the Robin and placed in in the centre of a “dogems” arena as the Robin driver smoked his cigar. I received an email from Mike Hallowes who wrote: We supplied the car and all the motorcycles for this shoot which was carried out over 24 hours continuously at a real fairground in Crawley, West Sussex (UK)  in 1991. The car was later sold via auction to a collection but has since been resold. We do not know where the car is now. It still bore its battle scars from the dodgem sequence.  The reg. no. was KGO 324N.  The advert appeared later in a video entitled: “Hamlet - The Video” The story of Britain’s favourite Ads.

My thanks to Mike Hallowes for sending in this picture.


Holston Pils

In a 1990’s Holston Pils advertisement a Bond Bug was used to burst through a wooden shed.



During November 2004, a Merlin Roadster appeared in an IBM advert.


Lunn Poly

I’m not sure about this one but I had an email from Mike Hallowes who said, “I don't know if this counts as a three wheeler in an advert but we recently  supplied a Formula One car for a Lunn Poly holiday commercial where the car  arrived in the pits with 4 wheels but left on 3 because the mechanic on the  left hand rear wheel was dreaming about his Lunn Poly holiday.”  Well I guess it is a 3-wheeler?

My thanks to Mike Hallowes for sending in this picture.



This BMW Isetta was seen in a Matalan advert in March 2005.

My thanks to Geoff Payne for sending in this picture.


Nivea Men UK

Nivea Reliant Rialto

On 12th February 2015 Liverpool Football Club announced NIVEA MEN UK as the club's official men's grooming partner. The partnership was launched with a television commercial that featured footballers, Jordan Henderson, Simon Mignolet and Raheem Sterling along with a a blue Reliant Rialto (Reg K157 JVF). The advert was first televised on Channel 4 on 13th February.



The Nokia advertisments in February 2001 featured a Piaggio Ape van as a “Florist Van” delivering flowers.


Phileas Fogg Crisps

An early 1990’s Phileas Fogg Crisp advert featured a Reliant Regal. The advert was filmed on Ranmore Common near Dorking. (UK).

My thanks to Mike Hallowes for sending in this picture.


Virgin Phones

A 1990’s Virgin Mobile Phone advertisement featured a Trojan. (Reg No JAZ 6153)

My thanks to Mike Hallowes for sending in this picture.


Washington Mutual Bank

The Washington Mutual Bank  ( Northwest USA)  featured the “Red Stilleto” in an advertising campaign;” Something different" in the mid 1990’s. The commercial started out with  a tight shot of the driver, in a black open face helmet and towards the end of the commercial there is a long shot where you finally see that he is driving a  high-heeled shoe.



We buy any car

In December 2011 the “we buy any car” adverts feature a 1997 P reg (P618 NON) Reliant Robin van suggesting in the advert that these are the cheapest of vehicles that they will give “from 50” for.  In reality a P reg Robin is probably worth more than some 4-wheeled vehicles of a similar age.



A 2001 advertisement featured a Trojan that may possibly have been the same one as used for the Vigin Mobile Phone advert above.  In the advert a lady goes to Woolworths to buy a Shoe Horn and forgets until she walks past a “large chap” trying to squeeze himself into a Trojan.




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