The Wienermobile has a new name and nobody consulted me

Just look at this travesty. Oscar Mayer

(Eric Weiner, who is not easily offended, is executive editor of Hagerty Media.)

Oscar Mayer and I have a beef. Earlier this week, the famous hot dog purveyor changed the name of its iconic Wienermobile to “Frankmobile.” According to a company press release, part of what I can only conclude is a coordinated attack to discredit me and my family name, the rebrand represents the first change to the mobile tubesteak’s identity since the vehicle hit streets in 1936.

As if trust in big corporations wasn’t low enough, this was all done behind my bun back. We’ve covered the Wienermobile (as I will continue to call it) several times on this website, including the time it got pulled over in Wisconsin, the time two of them went up for sale in Canada, and when I attempted to make reservations to sleep in an Wienermobile AirBnb. Apparently that didn’t cut the mustard for Big Hot Dog.

The drivers and staff formerly known as Hotdoggers will now be called Frankfurters, all in an effort to promote Oscar Mayer’s “tasty new recipe.” From where I’m sitting, it tastes like betrayal.

Wurst of all, the company is rolling out a new “Franks for Franks” program in which anyone named Frank (or similar) will get a coupon for a free pack of hot dogs. No such program existed for us Weiners, or even Wieners, to my knowledge.

There are rumblings that the name change won’t be permanent. So here’s hoping the Wienermobile is restored, ideally to its most excellent Dave Stevens spec, which consisted of multiple examples of the vehicle that were built in Wisconsin on a Chevy truck platform.




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    And this week’s prize for the most creative use of “wurst” goes to….. Eric! 🤣

    Hey, I’m with ya, man – these things are ever gonna be Weinermobiles to Mrs. DUB6 and me. Frankly, I’m disgusted with the whole deal!

    Interesting, maybe it’s a regional thing, but I’ve never heard anyone refer to a hot dog as a “frank”. Yes, I know it’s printed on the packages, but have never heard it used verbally.
    Still a great vehicle, can’t help but make you smile.

    It’s all about the dollar! 50 years ago they were the King. Too much competition out there. Improve the product and people will come back. The Weiner Mobile is an icon in the meat industry. One shouldn’t kill icons.

    It will ALWAYS be the Wienermobile to me so frankly I could care less what or why they want to change it!

    It’s a Wienermobile, period, full stop. Like changing Charlie Brown’s name to Scott. Or renaming New York’s Chrysler Building ‘Stellantis Tower’. Larger companies (Coca-Cola, Oldsmobile) have lost their shirts and/or lives over smaller changes to icons.

    It will always be the Wienermobile to me – in Catholic school in the 60’s they were not “hot dogs” or “Franks” they were called wiener sandwiches (not going to go further on this) my grown children still laugh at the old man……

    I remember in 1966, my friend and I were walking to grade school in Tucson, AZ, when we heard a vehicle coming up behind us. We turned and there it was, the Wienermobile, complete with the little guy, he waved and threw us some whistles, (I know, a whole lot of adult jokes there,) sadly, I gave mine away. That, and getting to watch Evel Knievel jump his Norton at night, were my best memories of our short time in Tucson.

    The Wienermobile (which I assure you I will continue to call it) made a brief tour of the Oregon Coast a weekend or two ago, stopping at a number of beach towns.

    One of them — Rockaway Beach, where I live — is home to the original corn dog, developed in the winter of 1938-39 by the proprietors of a hot-dog cart selling to beachgoers. Because the Oregon Coast winters are unrelentingly rainy, the cart owners found that the buns they were using got soggy. So they set out to come up with a solution.

    The answer: the Pronto Pup. They came up with a way of baking the dog directly into the bun so that, when they handed it to the customer, it had not yet soaked up all the Oregon winter.

    We have a brick-and-mortar Pronto Pup here in town to commemorate this. (After WW2, the Pronto Pup was franchised across the country.) The roof of the building houses an enormous fiberglass corn dog, a good 20 feet long *plus* the stick, all covered in a squiggle of painted fiberglass mustard.

    The Wienermobile stopped in front of the Pronto Pup for an awesome photo-opp. As I put it, the Wienermobile visited his cousin, the Giant Corn Dog.

    Harrumph. Now I want a corn dog. With extra Alka-Seltzer, please.

    I was not aware of the Pronto Pup’s history, nor that it originated in my neighboring state – thanks for that tidbit, Scott! And, like you, I now have a sudden craving – gonna have to remedy that later today, I guess!

    I’d rather have a Chicago Vienna Beef, New York Nathan’s or a Hebrew National Hot Dog. Oscar Mayer’s is not the wurst choice, but isn’t the best either. It’s a stupid name change.

    Shall I say, the Oscar Meyer as gone to the dark side by changing the name. It’s known now as “Frankenstein.”
    “Weinermobile” is simple and effective since 1936, an icon in the advertising field.

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