Ford TV Ads Sell Flex Appeal
I know that's waaaay too easy a headline, but how else would you describe this ad for the Ford Flex, launched this weekend? The TV spot gives the crossover a SteadyCamaroscopy and a 360-degree website spin (or eight) to the tune of the song "Son gonna rise" by Citizen Cope. So the unique selling point is… style. I mean it must be, as there's no strapline revealing its Unique Selling Point, no voiceover announcing its arrival, no nothin'. Ah, but there's another ad [ click here]. This one touts the Flex as an "agile, 24mpg crossover," then proclaims– both in narrative and in mescaline-tinged imagery– its drug-like ability to warp-your mind. "Suddenly, everything looks a little different." In fact, "Discover Flex" is as trippy a tagline as I've heard in some time. Like, wow Scoob.
It's a nice-looking car, but it's still the wrong vehicle at the wrong time. The point of crossovers, from the perspective of the manufacturers, seems to be to find some way to sell vehicles with a high profit margin, just like Toyota and Honda manage to do. It's a nice thought, but Toyota and Honda manage this by virtue of having spent years developing their market image. Ford will have some trouble cracking that and, meanwhile, they've set themselves up for Freestyle 2.0: too high a price and not enough utility. Yes, it's flashy, but it's also a seven-seater, and people who are image-conscious and want a vehicle of this size won't consider a Ford, while those who aren't will just buy an Odyssey or Sienna anyway. GM has the same problem: nice as the Lambdas are, they're not selling to people who'd otherwise buy a Pilot/Highlander, let alone an RX/MDX/X5/Q7, and the traditional GM van buyer just flat out doesn't have the money, not when you could have gotten an Uplander or Montana for a lot less than the Acadia will set you back, and get better mileage to boot. On the other hand, I could be wrong and maybe people will accept a premium Ford. The Edge did reasonably well, though it remains to be seen if it can sustain it.
A crossover between a brick and a Ford VP square head. The most appaling car/truck/van/suv/bus or whatever it is, to date. Period.
OK, so now we have a Super sized Expedition, an extra large sized Explorer, a large sized Taurus X, smaller sized (but still large) Edge, and now Ford is adding another large sized Flex. Please tell me exactly how many large sized 5 door wagons does Ford really expect to sell in our wagon averse culture here in the USA? Did I miss something or does the average American family now have 5 children instead of 2.5???? The irony is that just in time for the fuel crunch Ford does NOT have a Focus 5 wagon or 3/5 door hatchback anymore. Go Figure!!!!!!!
Looks SO much like a Range Rover (toy) that my son has.