French Canadian Ski-Doo Commercial

This is a fun vintage French-Canadian (Québecois) commercial from the 1970s for Ski-Doo snowmobiles. The commercial is packed with lots of fun vocabulary and grammar, for example “auto-neige” meaning snowmobile. Other points of interest are usage of the word même, indirect object pronoun en, usage of the preposition chez and much more.

text and translation

  • Voici un garçon complexe, votre vendeur Ski-Doo. Un fier comme tout.
    Here’s a complex boy, your Ski-Doo salesman. Proud as can be.
  • Pourquoi? Parce que c’est lui qui offre le plus grand choix d’auto-neige, avec un service inbattable.
    Why? Because he’s the one who offers the biggest choice of snowmobiles, with unbeatable service.
  • Ces modèles Ski-Doo grimpent les montagnes, ou semblent vouloir s’envoler.
    These Ski-Doo models climb mountains, or seem to fly away.
  • Certains Ski-Doo sont si luxueux qu’ils ont même une allume-cigarette.
    Certain Ski-Doos are so luxurious that they even have a cigarette lighter.
  • D’autres si puissant qu’on les appelle TNT.
    Others are so powerful they’re called TNT.
  • Il y a aussi un modèle si bon marché que certains en achètent plus qu’un.
    There’s also a model so cheap that certain people buy two of them.
  • Et le vendeur Ski-Doo représente Bombardier, l’inventeur de l’auto-neige.
    And the Ski-Doo salesman represents Bombardier, the inventor of the snowmobile.
  • Allez voir votre vendeur Ski-Doo soixante-dix et découvrez pourquoi de plus en plus chez nous, c’est Ski-Doo.
    Go see your Ski-Doo salesman 70 and discover why more and more in Quebec, it’s Ski-Doo.

vocabulary and grammar of interest

  • Un fier comme tout – “fier” is normally an adjective for proud.
  • auto-neige – French-Canadian word for snowmobile. Other terms include motoneige (f) and scooter des neiges (m).
  • c’est lui qui offre – He’s the one who offers. C’est moi qui + verb means I’m the one who + verb. C’est moi qui parle français! I’m the one who speaks French!
  • s’envoler – to fly away. This is a subjective pronominal verb. Complete lesson on subjective pronominal verbs here.
  • ils ont même une allume-cigarette – même has multiple meanings. One meaning is same. C’est la même chose – it’s the same thing. Moi-même is myself. The meaning in this context is “even”.
  • certains en achètent plus qu’un – this is usage of the indirect object pronoun en, with en meaning “them”. J’en ai deux translates to I have two of them. Complete lesson on “en” here. Here’s a lesson covering example sentences of acheter (to buy).
  • Joseph-Armand Bombardier, a Quebec native, invented the Ski-Doo in 1935.
  • chez nous chez is preposition for at one’s house or at or in one’s region. For example, “Je suis chez moi”. I’m at home. Here “chez nous” means here in Quebec.

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