Creative agencies love well-made car commercials – and so do customers. Given the overstimulated world we live in, we consider advertising the supreme discipline that shows us what the brands have mettle. As a highly emotional product, luxury cars make for the perfect subject.
So is there a surefire recipe that brings instant success to a car commercial? Sadly, no, because that would be too easy. We often reject commercials that are the result of a canned formula, especially in this attention-seeker environment. Therefore, creative advertising want to enter our consciousness – and even a step further, if they do it right. The best commercials draw us in, allowing us to start a relationship with the product and the brand. They give us a sense of belonging, making us laugh or making us think.
Even if we still take note of more conventional attempts, we only truly embrace the crème de la crème. Viewers want elegance and value the feeling of getting wrapped up in a story that is both excellent and surprising. We want to be surprised and entertained.
Super Bowl & Auto Industry
The Super Bowl is undeniably one of the world’s biggest sporting events, attracting hundreds of millions of viewers every year. While coverage of the NFL finale is still a little patchy outside the U.S., the action is un-missable across the entire American nation, consistently drawing in colossal TV viewing figures. The 2017 Super Bowl, for instance, boasted an average of just over 111 million viewers in the United States. Fans simply couldn’t miss the New England Patriots take on the Atlanta Falcons.
Are you wondering how does this relate to the auto industry? It all comes down to one word: Advertising. The sporting skill on show is important, but Super Bowl television adverts are just as much a part of the event. Therefore, carmakers hold nothing back when it comes to spending for this kind of coverage. At $5 million for 30 seconds of airtime, it gets rather costly to run an advertising campaign during the Super Bowl. Some adverts are even replayed numerous times during the game, raising the cost to tens of millions. Therefore, only the big guns advertise their products, creating memorable adverts for their viewers and potential customers.
Even though we don’t have the recipe for success when it comes to car adverts, we can still differentiate the best from the mediocre. Let’s look at some of the best luxury car commercials – some aired during the Super Bowl, some over the years. You can tell us which one you liked best in the comment section below.
Lexus LC Coupe
Lexus’ Super Bowl commercial was revealed before the actual event and all we can say is that it’s a masterpiece. A 60-second showcase of the new LC Coupe, the advert emphasizes the elegance and slick shape of the vehicle with the help of a cool backdrop, fast cutaways, and superb creative aspect. The dancer who slowly weaves his way behind the wheel of the big new coupe is fascinating, making the spot a fairly conventional Lexus production. “Machines don’t have emotions, but the rare few can inspire them,” says the female voiceover of the advert. And we can get behind that, given the engaging commercial Lexus has blessed us with.
Lexus has been cautious when it comes to its intent with the LC500. The company avoided calling this 2+2 a sports car. Instead, it used descriptors such as “luxury sports coupe” and “grand touring coupe.” No matter what the carmaker says about it, the Lexus LC is studded with impressive performance-car bona fides, including a carbon-fiber roof, an engine that sits fully aft of the front-axle centerline, an active rear spoiler, a composite trunk floor, and an even carbon-fiber inner-door panels. This is Lexus’s new North Star, pointing out to the company being on the verge of major change.
Mercedes-Benz AMG GT Roadster
Just like many other car companies this year, Mercedes has chosen to show off some star company. What’s better than riding on the open road with Steppenwolf’s “Born to be Wild” playing in your head? A Mercedes AMG GT Roadster and the legendary Peter Fonda. The German carmaker has chosen the legendary 1969 American road movie Easy Rider for its 2017 Super Bowl commercial, and the result is an epic ride. It doesn’t hurt that The Coen Brothers also make an appearance in the spot.
Mercedes holds high hopes for the AMG GT Roadster holds, which comes in two versions. Firstly, you can opt for the standard GT, rated at 469 horsepower and 465 lb-ft of torque. It shows off with 3.9 seconds from zero to 60 mph and tops out at a governed 188 mph. Meanwhile, AMG is also launching a new power and equipment level, the GT C, which is situated above the GT S but below the GT R versions of the coupe.
The GT C Roadster, on the other hand, makes 550 horsepower and 502 lb-ft of torque. Mercedes claims it hits 60 mph in 3.7 seconds, while the governor is reprogrammed to 196 mph. Experts suspect AMG is saving the 200-plus-mph software for a Black Series version, which will soon hit showrooms. The same twin-turbocharged 4.0-liter V-8 powers each of the carmaker’s AMG GT models.
The Mirai – Japanese for “the future” – took center stage in Toyota’s Super Bowl 51 commercial, and for a good reason. It was supposed to surprise customers with a new claim: the car’s only emission is water. However, it’s worth asking the question: Is the idea of saving lonely little daisies enough to convince car owners to pay £66,000 for Toyota’s fuel-cell car?
Some would say Toyota’s new model resembles SpongeBob SquarePants on a skateboard a little too much, but the looks are not the strongest suit of this car. Toyota’s sedan runs on hydrogen and the brand claims it produces no emissions. Ranging around 300 miles, the car takes only about five minutes to refuel. For the steep price of the model, the carmaker has included the fuel for the first three years of ownership. In the attempt to allay early-adopter concerns, the powertrain has an eight-year/100,000-mile warranty.
The Mirai is the first fuel-cell car that’s actually for sale, not just for lease. At home in the L.A. sprawl, the new Toyota is comfortable, quiet, and a pleasant means of surviving traffic-jammed freeways. This car’s eligibility for the city’s high-occupancy-vehicle lanes allows drivers to cruise at the speed limit past the CO₂ producers in the traffic.
Is it possible that you just saw the most incredible drift-choreography in a rotary traffic? With BMW’s help, yes, it is. They hired five Hollywood stunt drivers, added the same amount of BMW M235i cars, and the result is nothing less than stunning. We hope you enjoyed the 90 seconds of smoking tires and driving pleasure. Even though it is an older commercial, the BMW M235i is remains a classic among the company’s models.
Famed for their driver-centered nature, BMW’s vehicles have become more important to drivers in the U.S. The carmaker sells around 100,000 trucks annually – in the U.S. alone – covering almost a third of the brand’s volume. And this M variant does exactly what customers have come to expect of the company’s machines. The precise steering keeps the driver informed about the road’s every nuance, while squeezing the brakes gives him complete control around corners. It’s never been easier to let your foot drop easily onto the accelerator to match engine revs for a downshift.
The M235i took everything BMW did well so far and concentrated it into a compact package. The 320-hp 3.0-liter turbo six gives you sweet, smooth power, while the chassis is gentler than the M235i’s larger M-badged siblings.
“Only those who dare drive the world forward” – that is the motto of arguably the best commercial released by Cadillac. In addition to the sleek vibe of the entire advert, the luxury company has also managed to attract viewers with its superb editing. Reverse videos are all the rage, and Cadillac incorporated the concept sublimely in this 60-second spot. In addition to its high-tech features and avant-garde styling, the CT6 also proves it can best its European rivals.
Cadillac separated the CT6 models into four groups: Base, Luxury, Premium Luxury, and Platinum. If you’re looking for the sweet spot in this lineup, the Luxury trim is the winner. It comes with a base 265-horsepower 2.0-liter turbo four-cylinder paired with an eight-speed automatic and traditional rear-wheel drive. While the all-wheel drive is available only on six-cylinder models, it’s standard on Premium Luxury and Platinum trims.
The CT6’s interior is indeed comfortable, but the spacious seats are unpleasantly contrasted with generic leather. There are significant improvements in the touchscreen response of Cadillac’s CUE system, but the touchpad on the center console is hypersensitive. It occasionally registers unintended inputs if the driver or passenger adjust their hands on the center armrest.