A History On Vehicle Wraps

Aug 5, 2022

A vehicle wrap is one of the most effective forms of advertising that you can invest in. While you are out on the town and running errands, prospective clients are exposed to your brand. Every trip that you take is another opportunity to expose more people to your logo, messages, services, and goods. The question is, how did this form of advertising actually come to be common? 


Are you ready to learn about where vehicle wraps have come from? This short marketing history will give you more background knowledge on how vehicle wraps came to be popular:

Early Advertising

The truth is that advertising on vehicles has been around since the very beginning of the history of the car. When Henry Ford invented the first vehicle, he intended for it to be used for racing. Advertising on motor vehicles started early when the cars were initially used for these racing purposes. 


It was necessary to identify which car was which on the track, so they started to create new ways to advertise themselves. 


The first cars used for racing had important details like their numbers, the name of the racers, and even their sponsors painted on them. Vinyl wraps were a long way off, but paint and ink got the job done on these early vehicles. They weren’t the sleek race cars with their vinyl wraps that you see today in sports like NASCAR, but they were still effective.  


While Henry Ford was the first to consider customizing cars, he was hardly the last to do it. The modern principle of vehicle advertising was solidified by Milton Hershey. Hershey was the first person to paint his company name across the side of the car. The candy bar empire he started also sparked a new trend. His innovative form of advertising was quickly replicated by businesses all across the world. 


The early advertising days relied on paint and ink to decorate the vehicles. It would be decades before vinyl wraps entered the scene and became the most popular way to market a brand from the side or back of a car. 

Vinyl Wraps

You might be surprised to learn that the vinyl wrap was actually invented in the 1920s. Despite the introduction of vinyl wraps to the market, it took a long time for them to catch on when it came to advertising on cars with them. Thirty years passed before they started to use vinyl wraps consistently on cars. 


As we entered into the 1950s, vinyl wraps became a lot more popular because of their increased durability. Unfortunately, they were still relatively expensive to install on the side and back of a vehicle. This meant that they were really only an option for larger companies who had the extra money in their budget to tackle this type of project.


For example, one of the first companies that capitalized on the trend of vinyl wraps was the United States Air Force. They used the new technology to apply insignia and branding to their fighter jets. As you can imagine, this was quite an expensive undertaking and goes to show how large companies had to be in order to afford the luxury of custom vinyl wraps. 


By the 1980s, technology had advanced to the point where vinyl wraps were suddenly affordable for more of the population. Smaller businesses had the opportunity to get in on the effective use of their marketing dollars to advertise on their company vehicles. 

The Modern Vehicle Wrap

Today, Winnipeg vehicle wraps are more affordable than ever before, thanks to the increase in technology that makes them easier to produce. Technology continues to advance, which helps speed up the production and application of a vinyl wrap to a vehicle. 


In order to produce the wraps of today, you will need a pressure-sensitive film, a high-tech computer, and a piezoelectric inkjet printer. These technological advances took almost 50 years to perfect, and they continue to grow and adapt as new discoveries are made. 


Hopefully, vehicle wraps will be even more affordable in the decades to come as technology continues to grow. 

The Process of a Vehicle Wrap

The vehicle wrap process starts with the graphic designer, who has special training in applying graphics to the contours of a vehicle. The designer will gather all of the information that you want on your vehicle wrap and start to put together a design that is cohesive with your brand. Using a high-tech computer program, they can translate their new design onto an image of your company vehicle. 


Once the design has been approved by the client, the designer transfers their data to the team that will focus on installation. The design is split up into panels that will eventually comprise the entire design. This allows them to account for door gaps, curves, and other unique aspects of the vehicle. The sliced images will be printed on a large vinyl printer. 


The vehicle will be thoroughly cleaned to ensure that the surface is adequately prepared for the installation of the wrap. Skipping this step can be quite disastrous for the longevity of your wrap. 


After cleaning, an expert installation technician is able to start applying the panels to the vehicle. The entire process of installation usually takes less than three days, depending on the size of the vehicle and the intricacies of the wrap. Finally, you will be able to enjoy the fruits of their labour and advertise your business as you drive around town with your new vehicle wrap. 

Enlisting the Help of a Professional

While technology has certainly come a long way since the times when companies used to paint their logos on the sides of their vehicles, it is still best left in the hands of professionals. SpeedPro Winnipeg North has the experience you need to tackle your next vehicle wrap and ensure that it lasts for years to come. Give us a call today to learn more about how we can help you get the word out about your business!

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