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As we near Valentine’s Day, the classic romantic comedy comes to the fore. Packing laughs and love, the rom-com has attracted some of the very biggest names in showbiz. They’ve always been a hit with audiences too – some more than others – particularly around Valentine’s Day.

But as well as star-studded casts, many of these movies have featured some four-wheeled icons which played a key role in these hit films. Let’s check out some of the very best.

1973 Volkswagen Thing – 50 First Dates


50 First Dates was a rom-com which first hit our screens back in 2004 and starred Adam Sandler and Drew Barrymore. Barrymore’s character suffers from short-term memory loss, which means she forgets Sandler’s character after every day.

But as well as the laughs and love, one of the standout stars of the movie was the bright yellow 1973 Volkswagen Thing driven by Barrymore’s character throughout the film. Reflecting the laid-back feel of the film’s Hawaii setting, this is one Volkswagen you wouldn’t want to forget.

1948 Ford De Luxe – Grease

Credit: Joe Ross

Grease is one of those much-loved romantic comedies which has been seen by nearly everyone. Released in 1978 and starring Olivia Newton-John and John Travolta, Grease had a distinctly motoring-related theme to it.

While it did feature a raft of extremely cool cars, the 1948 Ford De Luxe is the one which caught our eye. It was the car used in the famous ‘Greased Lightning’ scene, embedding it in movie folklore from that day on.

1990 Lotus Esprit SE – Pretty Woman


The 90s represented a heyday for the romantic comedy, with the decade’s list of box office hits being kicked off by 1990’s Pretty Woman. With Richard Gere and Julia Roberts at the helm, this classic was met with accolades across the globe.

But it was the Lotus Esprit which stole the show at the start. Gere’s character is shown struggling to navigate the car’s manual gearbox, before Vivian Ward – played by Roberts – steps in to show him just what the Lotus can do.

You could get your hands on a striking Lotus too – check out some of the latest examples on Motors.co.uk here.

1946 Hudson Commodore Eight Club Coupe – Notebook

Credit: Christopher Ziemnowicz

The Notebook is one of those go-to ‘cryer’ romantic comedies, with the popular combination of Rachel McAdams and Ryan Gosling ensuring that it remains at the top of many people’s rom-coms even today.

It was packed with cool cars, too, ranging from the iconic Willys Jeep to the classic Ford Model A. But it’s the striking Hudson Commodore Eight Club Coupe which stands out for us in particular, bringing added class to this already very glossy movie.

2004 Mini Cooper S – The Holiday


Though sitting more on the Christmas-themed end of the romantic comedy spectrum, 2006’s The Holiday remains one of the very best about. Packing comedy and heartbreak in equal measure, it’s little wonder why it was such a hit.

It also featured a starring role by the then quite-new Mini Cooper S, which was piloted by Cameron Diaz’s character through some classically winding British lanes.

Fancy your own Cooper S? Check out used Mini models here.

1986 Yugo GV – Nick and Norah’s Infinite Playlist

Credit: Michael Gil

Indie classic Nick and Norah’s Infinite Playlist is a movie based entirely around a car, as Nick and Norah – played Michael Cera and Kat Dennings – as they traipse around New York in search of a secret music gig.

And they get around in a rather odd car – a 1986 Yugo GV. It potters around the city merrily enough and even serves as a taxi in certain scenes.

2004 Mercedes-Benz SLR McLaren – Crazy, Stupid, Love


Crazy, Stupid, Love is a romantic comedy which took cinemas by storm when it was released back in 2011. With Steve Carrell, Julianne Moore, Emma Stone and Ryan Gosling coming together as an oddly intertwined family, this is a rom-com which covers all the bases.

And though it wasn’t packed with motoring big-hitters, it did have one incredibly high-end car stored away nearly out of sight. In the corner of Jacob’s (played by Gosling) garage sits a Mercedes-Benz SLR McLaren – a car which packed both incredible looks and a 5.4-litre supercharged V8.

If you want to get your own slice of movie history or a car that’ll add a bit of theatre to your day, then check out thousands of available cars on Motors.co.uk.

Jack Evans

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After completing his university studies in English and Creative Writing in Cardiff, Jack is now a full time motoring writer at Blackball Media. His love of cars stems from his childhood years when he began to live and breathe all-things automotive.

February 12, 2021