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Joe Isuzu

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BUSINESS
October 1, 1998 | KEN WOO, TIMES STAFF WRITER
Despite roles in sitcoms and feature films, actor David Leisure is best known as the lying car salesman he portrayed in TV ads for Isuzu. "I still get recognized," Leisure said. "I'll be walking down the street and people will yell, 'Hey, there goes Joe Isuzu!' " Leisure, 47, played the smirking car salesman whose deals included selling an Isuzu for $9. Every time Leisure would offer a deal too good to be true, the words "He's Lying" would appear at the bottom of the screen.
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BUSINESS
January 31, 2008 | Ken Bensinger, Times Staff Writer
No lie, Isuzu is outta here. The Japanese automaker, famous for its commercials featuring a less-than-honest salesman, said Wednesday that it would stop selling passenger vehicles in the U.S., as sales declined to almost nothing in recent years. The move, effective one year from today, marks the end of a 27-year run here and makes Isuzu the first Asian car company to abandon the world's largest market since South Korea's financially troubled Daewoo stopped selling here in 2002.
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BUSINESS
November 18, 1989 | BRUCE HOROVITZ, TIMES STAFF WRITER
Joe Isuzu is about to put on a regional face. American Isuzu Motors this week consolidated all of its advertising with Della Femina, McNamee WCRS Inc., the Los Angeles agency that created the lying pitchman. Della Femina will receive an additional $32 million in annual billings that will be mostly pegged toward regional advertising for Isuzu.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
September 8, 2001 | STEVE HARVEY
Did you see where the Disney folks plan to install defibrillators at Disneyland? I hope they install them at the entrance for people with weak hearts who are shocked by the price of admission. Unreal estate: Marjorie Sorenson came upon an ad for residents who don't know what to do with their garage (see accompanying).
BUSINESS
June 23, 1992 | BRUCE HOROVITZ
If it isn't good ol' Frank Bartles and Ed Jaymes. And say, isn't that Joe Isuzu? When viewers turn on their TV sets over the next few weeks, they'll be seeing these very familiar characters in commercials. But there's something different this time around. Those folksy guys who played Bartles & Jaymes aren't selling wine coolers any more, but under their real names, Dick and Dave, they are peddling subscriptions to Golf Illustrated. And Joe Isuzu isn't selling cars any longer.
BUSINESS
May 6, 1988 | BRUCE HOROVITZ, Times Staff Writer
The world knows that Joe Isuzu tells whoppers. Now the company that sells Whoppers has signed him up as a pitchman. When Burger King introduces a new hamburger next month, actor David Leisure--who has portrayed Joe Isuzu for more than two years--will be hyping both the new burger, Big Cheese, and a new model Isuzu truck, Big Joe, in a promotion for both companies.
BUSINESS
March 27, 1990 | BRUCE HOROVITZ
Lee A. Iacocca walks into Chrysler's boardroom and looks angry enough to kick a dog. He paces while telling the nervous board members that American consumers are dead wrong to think that Japanese cars are better than American cars. "The frustration is, we have advantages over the Japanese in every car we make." Iacocca says. "But nobody knows it. And that's going to change." By now, just about everyone has seen that Chrysler TV commercial. That ad is but one smidgen of the estimated $5.
BUSINESS
May 10, 1991 | BRUCE HOROVITZ, TIMES STAFF WRITER
The advertising agency that made fast-fibbing Joe Isuzu a household word--and American Isuzu a household name--was abruptly fired Thursday by the Japanese car maker. "I hope they call me tomorrow and say, 'We were lying,' " said Jerry Della Femina, chairman of the New York agency Della Femina McNamee, whose Los Angeles office created Isuzu ads. Isuzu's decision has left Della Femina's Los Angeles office reeling.
BUSINESS
October 1, 1998 | DENISE GELLENE, TIMES STAFF WRITER
No one remembers Joe Isuzu. (OK, we're lying.) American Isuzu Motors Inc. hasn't aired a commercial with its infamous lying salesman in eight years. Yet when consumers are asked about Isuzu, the fictitious Joe Isuzu invariably comes up. "We're probably best known as the 'father of Joe Isuzu,' " said Joseph L. Fellona, vice president for light-vehicle marketing at the U.S. arm of the Japanese auto maker.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
October 15, 1987
I have a problem distinguishing two TV personalities: Joe Isuzu is the one who is lying but has subtitles telling us he is lying. The other--Ronald Reagan is the one lying with no subtitles. Now I think I have it! P.S. I hope they put subtitles on Reagan soon; it might help us understand. RICHARD M. POWELL Los Angeles
SPORTS
June 23, 2001
Why does everybody keep picking on T.J. Simers? Is it simply because T.J. Simers keeps picking on everybody? It's especially amusing to see readers' emotional reactions to Simers' columns when I've learned for a fact that T.J. Simers doesn't even exist. He's a figment of your imagination, and you people at The Times should be deeply ashamed. Just yesterday I was discussing geopolitics and quark theory with my personal grocery bagger at the market when the conversation drifted around to sports.
NEWS
November 26, 1998 | PAUL DEAN, TIMES AUTOMOTIVE WRITER
Badges front and rear on this polypropylene pod claim it was manufactured by Isuzu. Forgive us for doubting the builder of Trooper, Rodeo, Hombre and other stylized cinder blocks. Our guess is that Isuzu's 1999 VehiCROSS--how's that for an aerospaced-out name?--was whelped in space and recovered from the desert near Roswell. Twin chromed fangs salivate in the grille and serve no purpose other than to suggest Mad Max had a hand in market research.
BUSINESS
November 5, 1998
What do you mean whatever happened to Joe Isuzu [" 'Father of Joe Isuzu' Now Says Specialty Is the Best Policy," Oct. 1]? We elected him president--twice. CRAIG LESLEY Santa Ana
BUSINESS
October 1, 1998 | DENISE GELLENE, TIMES STAFF WRITER
No one remembers Joe Isuzu. (OK, we're lying.) American Isuzu Motors Inc. hasn't aired a commercial with its infamous lying salesman in eight years. Yet when consumers are asked about Isuzu, the fictitious Joe Isuzu invariably comes up. "We're probably best known as the 'father of Joe Isuzu,' " said Joseph L. Fellona, vice president for light-vehicle marketing at the U.S. arm of the Japanese auto maker.
BUSINESS
October 1, 1998 | KEN WOO, TIMES STAFF WRITER
Despite roles in sitcoms and feature films, actor David Leisure is best known as the lying car salesman he portrayed in TV ads for Isuzu. "I still get recognized," Leisure said. "I'll be walking down the street and people will yell, 'Hey, there goes Joe Isuzu!' " Leisure, 47, played the smirking car salesman whose deals included selling an Isuzu for $9. Every time Leisure would offer a deal too good to be true, the words "He's Lying" would appear at the bottom of the screen.
BUSINESS
June 23, 1992 | BRUCE HOROVITZ
If it isn't good ol' Frank Bartles and Ed Jaymes. And say, isn't that Joe Isuzu? When viewers turn on their TV sets over the next few weeks, they'll be seeing these very familiar characters in commercials. But there's something different this time around. Those folksy guys who played Bartles & Jaymes aren't selling wine coolers any more, but under their real names, Dick and Dave, they are peddling subscriptions to Golf Illustrated. And Joe Isuzu isn't selling cars any longer.
BUSINESS
June 29, 1989 | BRUCE HOROVITZ, Times Staff Writer
Did Business Week "lie" about the ad world's most famous liar? The New York ad agency that created the smooth-tongued Joe Isuzu sure thinks so. And Della Femina, MacNamee WCRS has placed a scathing full-page ad in today's Wall Street Journal that could make even Joe Isuzu blush. The ad will run under the headline, "Business Week Admires Joe Isuzu So Much That in Their July 12th Issue, They 'Lied' About Isuzu's Sales." Not surprisingly, Business Week says that it is Della Femina that is twisting the truth.
BUSINESS
June 24, 1990
After reading Bruce Horovitz's column, I think members of the advertising industry should have an inferiority complex--especially those who develop television commercials. A restaurant chain portrays a man who is obviously getting sick to his stomach as he listens to a nauseating female screech out the menu. Who would want to start his day by eating breakfast in such an atmosphere? Joe Isuzu may have been amusing but he did not inspire confidence in the product. Other ads imply that the prospective customer has traits in common with a pig. While that may be true, it is scarcely the best bait with which to catch even a dumb fish.
BUSINESS
June 9, 1991
According to Joe Isuzu: "Advertising in L.A. is dying. Business is way down. Creativity is gone and clients are fleeing L.A. to other markets." (He's lying.) Of course, nobody believes Joe Isuzu. But a lot of Los Angeles Times readers got this misleading impression of our regional advertising industry from the article, "L.A. Agencies Are in Need of a New Image" (May 19). As president of the Western States Advertising Agencies Assn. (WSAAA), I am writing to protest the article.
BUSINESS
May 10, 1991 | BRUCE HOROVITZ, TIMES STAFF WRITER
The advertising agency that made fast-fibbing Joe Isuzu a household word--and American Isuzu a household name--was abruptly fired Thursday by the Japanese car maker. "I hope they call me tomorrow and say, 'We were lying,' " said Jerry Della Femina, chairman of the New York agency Della Femina McNamee, whose Los Angeles office created Isuzu ads. Isuzu's decision has left Della Femina's Los Angeles office reeling.
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