Car ads of the Super Bowl
The centrepiece of the American sporting world, Super Bowl XLVIII (or the American Safety Rugby final as Ross O'Carroll Kelly calls it) is on this Sunday (Feb 2). Expected to be watched by billions worldwide the final pits the Seattle Seahawks against the Denver Broncos at the MetLife Stadium in New Jersey.
Even if you are not interested in seeing grown men throwing an inflated pigskin to each other while wearing the kind of protection that police dog handlers use, the Super Bowl is more than just a football game - it is an extravaganza. From the half time entertainment (who can forget Janet Jackson's 'wardrobe malfunction'?) to the adverts, there is as much going on off the pitch as there is on it.
With 30-second slots costing up to €4 million advertisers bring out their big guns and for car manufacturers the Super Bowl is the perfect time to get their new products to as many people as possible. Join us as we look through some of the best car adverts that have already been released for this year.
The Audi A3 Saloon has just been launched stateside - a car that the Germans say has been designed without compromise. To show how bad compromise can be the ad executives came up with a bizarre dog called a Doberhuahua:
Hybrids are fairly normal this side of the pond but apparently in the States they are some kind of mythological creature like a Griffin. Or at least that's what we get from Ford's ad for its hybrid range:
Hyundai will run two ads during the Superbowl - one smart, one not so. At first the advert for the Genesis saloon looks to be about an overprotective parent but it's really about the car's auto braking technology:
The advert for the Elantra is really just an excuse to have that guy from 'Big Bang Theory':
What both ads show is that Americans can still not pronounce 'Hyundai' properly.
Hyundai take note - if you are going to do celebrity endorsements this is how it's done. Playing on Hollywood's love for British movie villains Jaguar teams Ben Kingsley with Mark Strong and Tom Hiddleston to show that its #GoodToBeBad.
Kia's celebrity endorsement ranks somewhere between Jaguar's and Hyundai's as it sees Laurence Fishburne reprise his role as Morpheus from the Matrix, but falls down as we don't actually get to see the Kia K900 he is meant to be advertising!
But then this is a teaser and maybe Morpheus, sorry Laurence, will rock a K900 in the actual advert.
In the States Toyota sells an SUV that sits between the RAV4 and Landcruiser called the Highlander. Which, for anyone who grew up in the eighties, should only mean 'I am Duncan McLeod of the Clan McLeod...' and this teaser seems to be aiming that way with the Highlander's phrase 'There can be only one' beginning to play out before being interrupted by... The Muppets!
We will just have to wait until Sunday to see how that works out.
In Europe Volkswagens are known for their reliability, but not so much in the US. Hardly surprising when the best-selling vehicle over there (the Ford F150 pick-up) is made from pig iron and will likely survive a nuclear strike. So to address that Volkswagen borrows a little bit of Jimmy Stewart magic from 'It's a wonderful life'