The deliverer of one of advertising’s most misquoted lines passed away today. Ricardo Montalban – famous through the years as an MGM movie star opposite the like of Esther Williams, the dream-fulfilling man in white Mr. Roarke on Fantasy Island, the vest-clad Khan (or KHAAAANNNN!!! as William Shatner would put it) in “Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan” – was 88.

And while he will be remembered as both an actor and celebrity (which are different things, Paris), he will also live on as the spokesman for the 1975 Chrysler Cordoba, aka The Small Chrysler. It was in the ad that he opined about the Cordoba’s “soft Corinthian leather.” Through the years, this line would morph into “rich Corinthian leather,” spawning parodies and homages from pretty much every copywriter since. (Except for some decidedly uppity whippersnappers out there who think they’re too ironically hip for such paeans. Fie on them! Fie.)

The real news is that there’s no such thing as Corinthian leather – soft, rich or otherwise. The Cordoba’s hides were actually produced in a plant in Newark, New Jersey. Suave.

But that doesn’t make the spot – or Señor Montalban – any less awesome.