By on January 17, 2019

Image: GM/YouTube

As a blizzard bears down on a still unidentified swath of eastern North America, we can all take comfort in knowing General Motors has pulled one of its annoying “Real People” commercials from rotation. Small mercies.

The ad, which stated Chevrolet was a more reliable brand than Toyota, Honda, and Ford, rankled its rivals and raised questions about the survey behind it. While GM stands behind the spot, you won’t be seeing this version of the commercial anymore.

As commercials are mostly all trash, it begs the question: what car commercial have you always wanted to see, but will likely never get the chance?

But let’s go back to that Real People spot for a moment.

Titled “Chevy Surprises Competitive Owners When It Comes To Reliability,” the ad drew on data collected from owners of 2015 model year vehicles by the Ipsos polling firm. After some prodding, GM revealed to Jalopnik that a small fraction of the survey’s recipients actually responded to Ipsos’ request, which doesn’t necessarily erase the reliability claim; however, the vehicles in GM’s ad were 2019 models. Remember the 2015 Chevrolet Malibu? Yeah, that was the previous-generation car. Same goes for the Traverse, Equinox, and Silverado, also shown in the ad.

Reliability means different things to different people; these days, survey recipients gripe more about wonky infotainment systems than serious mechanical failures that could leave you stranded on the side of the road. I suppose a flummoxed navigation system could yield the same result, but you get the idea. In its 2018 brand dependability rankings, JD Power found that, based on data from owners of three-year-old vehicles, Chevrolet actually did rank higher than Toyota, Honda, and Ford, with the Equinox, Silverado, Traverse, and Malibu topping the heap in their respective categories.

However, a 2018 reliability study by Consumer Reports showed Toyota sitting second from the top among three-year-old vehicles, while Chevrolet languished below the industry average. The publication’s 2018 new-car Initial Quality study showed Chevrolet ranked below Ford, but above Toyota and Honda. For brand faithful, it’s a matter of picking the ranking you like most.

Okay, with all of that said, let’s go back to the marketing realm. Car commercials are almost always terrible, and not even the appearance of adorable puppies can thaw our icy hearts (though my mom loves the Subaru ad with the dog in the canoe). I just want Denis Leary to stop yelling at me.

Have you ever yearned for an automaker’s ad team to strip away all of the bullshit, all of the focus group-spawned messaging, all of the touchy-feely, family-oriented niceness? I know I have. Put me in charge of a vehicle’s TV and online marketing, and I’d be booted out the door on day one.

So, B&B, if a higher power granted your wishes, what car commercial would you like to see? What would it say, how would it say it, and what vehicle would it say it about?

[Image: General Motors/YouTube]

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145 Comments on “QOTD: After GM Pulls ‘Real People’ Ad, What Do You Want to See In a Car Commercial?...”


  • avatar
    RedRocket

    The Chevy real people ads are terrible and need to die. But Nissan ads are just as bad in different ways. At least we haven’t seen Mr. Opportunity from Honda (or the Pomplamoose lady with the dead eyes from Hyundai) in a while.

    • 0 avatar
      gtem

      The worst Nissan ones are their ads for their driver aids, the guy crossing a bridge surrounded by traffic or the lady on the highway in between two semis. Hey just the time to engage the steering assist system! /sarcasm

      • 0 avatar
        Detroit-Iron

        I loathe any of those ads for driver aids like brake assist. Invariable some [email protected] is doing something they shouldn’t behind the wheel, only to have to slam on the brakes to avoid what would have been an easily avoidable crash. They are normalizing bad driving. They are probably effective though, some bad driver watching it will say to himself, “I am a bad driver, I should get that car.”

        • 0 avatar
          carguy67

          Like the family in the Hyundai commercial that didn’t see the moose standing in the middle of a straight stretch of road with perfectly clear and dry weather?

    • 0 avatar
      dukeisduke

      Hey, the Pomplamoose lady was kinda cute. How did Hyundai find them, anyway? Was it some hipster working at their ad agency?

      The thing that I missed this Christmas season was Imagine Dragons’ “Top Of The World” in the Ford end of year sale ads. Instead, the Ford ads were incredibly lame. Thanks, Hackett!

    • 0 avatar

      Yeah but the Mahk spoofs make them a worthwhile addition to pop culture. Sorta like MST3K did to bad films.

    • 0 avatar
      Russycle

      The Progressive Insurance ad mocking the Chevy ads is comedy gold. Such an easy target, it probably just about wrote itself.

      • 0 avatar
        highdesertcat

        Progressive, Geico and even Libertty do present some funny ads.

        I always smile when I see the Camel ask, “what day it is?”

        Or liberty’s “You picked the wrong plan!” (Noooooooooo, I picked the wrong Company!!!”

        I’m with USAA. Been for decades, but do enjoy seeing good commercials, like Bud’s “Ribbit” frogs and “Waaaaazzzuuuuuuup.”

  • avatar
    dthomso1

    Every car advert must include some Rush, like this one:

  • avatar
    jh26036

    Initial 2002 Subaru WRX ads…still gives me chills.

    The kid with bike in the 997/911 ad was pretty sweet too.

  • avatar
    John R

    More ads like the 300zx/Barbie ad from back in the day – youtube.com/watch?v=-Qp8siUEY74

    • 0 avatar
      Art Vandelay

      Yes! I came here to say this. GI Joe picking up Barbie in a Z-32 Z car withe a very disappointed Ken in the background. All to a Van Halen soundtrack. I’m sure such an ad would be labeled “toxic masculinity” or some such thing now, but dudes still buy cars and this was the greatest car ad of this dude’s life.

      Honorable mention to Joe Isuzu.

      • 0 avatar
        SunnyvaleCA

        The Barbie ad and the Joe Isuzu ad were the best. Just goes to show: there’s no need for any real content information, because people won’t believe it anyway. Might as well have fun and mention the brand you’re hawking.

        Nowadays I don’t even know why we have ads on TV. Does anyone actually watch live TV and sit through the ads? I refuse to watch anything I can’t pre-record for both time-shifting and ad filtering. If I have to sit through ads I’m just going to watch something else.

  • avatar
    28-Cars-Later

    Maybe show, the car? Oh wait those suck. Ah now I see the need for subterfuge.

  • avatar
    Vulpine

    What I want to see is individuality in cars. More color choices; different body styles; more color choices in the interior, etc. I am flat sick of all sedans being effective clones of each other, all CUVs being effective clones of each other, etc. About the only place you can find individuality any more is in pickups, and even they’re beginning to look too much alike.

  • avatar
    schmitt trigger

    To me the gold standards for watchable commercials are both Geico’s and Bud Light’s.

    It would be a little difficult to translate their irreverent tone to a car commercial, but at least they could try.

    • 0 avatar
      slavuta

      I hope you don’t mean one from geico where road assistance comes and puts that skinny spare on the front of the FWD car.

    • 0 avatar
      darex

      Geico commercials are the worst! They are bizarre, annoying, inescapable, and make the most tenuous amount of sense, if any. Their advertising budget is obviously WAY too high. I’m so put-off by them, that I would never buy their insurance. They obviously have too much money to care. Meanwhile, Progressive’s commercials are clever and witty. Based solely on their ads, I’d much rather choose Progressive over Geico. Of course, who chooses insurance policies, based on their TV commercials? LOL

    • 0 avatar
      dukeisduke

      Notice the other insurance companies trying to employ humor? The Liberty Mutual commercials, like the guy trying to hide his identity, and bicyclist with the giant calves? Those suck.

      I just want to shoot Flo and everyone else in the Progressive ads.

      • 0 avatar
        MoparRocker74

        Actually I think Flo is kinda hot. That boring, vanilla soccer mom girl in the Toyota ads is kind of annoying, being so perky but generic. I guess her image is appropriate for Toyota though…inoffensive and forgettable.

        • 0 avatar
          WildcatMatt

          The funny thing about the Flo ads is, to my understanding, they were intended as a stopgap.

          Progressive was readying a major new campaign but it was taking too long so they whipped up the Flo ads as something to run for a couple of months until they could do the full launch. Then they discovered that the Flo spots were a hit and the rest is history…

          • 0 avatar
            JimC2

            Anybody remember the Wisk “ring around the collar” commercials? I bet a lot of people do.

            A lot of people might find Flo annoying but they’re still going to remember her thirty years from now.

      • 0 avatar
        JohnTaurus

        “I just want to shoot Flo and everyone else in the Progressive ads.”

        Here, here! I hate progressive ads. I dont find them witty at all. I wont say what I really think of them because I have no desire to offend those who like them, but let me just say if there was something I could do to stop them, I’d already have done it.

        Oh, wait, there is, I can record my shows and skip the commercials. Done. (I do occasionally watch live TV, but usually only when at someone else’s house lol.)

        I honestly think the funniest insurance commercial was State Farm’s “I gotchu a dollar.”, followed closely by Allstate’s Mayhem series. The one from several years ago where he’s hanging off the side of the Jeep as a blind spot, and tells the lady “you’re good!” thus allowing her to merge into another vehicle was my favorite.

        My friend, her husband (my cousin) and I watched John Wick (movie) the other night, and the guy from the Allstate commercial was in it. We constantly referred to him as simply “Mayhem”.

        For commercials that make a good point about what you need insurance for (aside from Allstate’s Mayhem), I’ll give that to Farmer’s “we know a thing or two because we’ve seen a thing or two”. Not annoying, not cheesy or stupid, but they do make a statement that resonates well. I dont want to just here how many millions of dollars you can save me (which is 99% bs), just tell me what you can do for me.

        • 0 avatar
          slavuta

          Progressive ads annoying to say the least

        • 0 avatar
          RedRocket

          The first few Progressive “Flo” commercials were good, but now they have beaten the concept to death and it is not funny or even amusing.

          Some of the earlier GEICO ads were great (the caveman series in particular) but lately they are just silly as opposed to funny. Although I have to admit I actually did laugh at the one with the family having dinner while seated in massage chairs.

      • 0 avatar
        carguy67

        “I just want to shoot Flo and everyone else in the Progressive ads.”

        Try as I might, I can’t hate Flo. At least she seems to be in on the joke, and the one where she plays her sister on the stationary bike ‘blasting her quads’ is a pretty good sendup of exercise snobs.

        Plus, the gal who plays her, who I believe was once a standup comedian, probably owns a fleet of G-Wagons to haul her cash.

      • 0 avatar
        28-Cars-Later

        Flo must die.

      • 0 avatar
        carguy67

        Those Liberty Mutual commercials are in constant play in California, but the service they’re pushing, ‘Accident Forgiveness,’ is not available in California (by law, I believe). Smart targeting there, Liberty.

  • avatar
    crtfour

    I really like the C6 Corvette ad with the kid driving.

    Also liked the GM ads from the 80’s that were unique to each division such as “Cadillac Style” and “We Build Excitement.” Nothing like seeing a whitewall-tired wire wheel-covered Bonneville tearing up the mountain twisties.

    • 0 avatar
      dukeisduke

      Or go back to the ’70s Cadillac ads: “Best of all, it’s a Cadillac”

      • 0 avatar
        CaddyDaddy

        +1. Or the Arnold Palmer Cadillac ads. They made you feel you have accomplished something, “you have arrived” when you select a Cadillac as your automobile.

        Cadillac adds today, “your cool, youthful, hip etc…….”. Yuk. They were Scion ads filmed in NYC.

    • 0 avatar
      Featherston

      @ crtfour – I was going to take you task for your “Nothing like seeing a whitewall-tired wire wheel-covered Bonneville tearing up the mountain twisties” remark, but you are wrong only vis-a-vis the whitewalls. This ad actually does feature what I believe to be a Bonneville LE with wire wheel covers (0:09 mark): youtube.com/watch?v=_AAsRgwS9GU. They don’t look like wire wheel covers in the low-res ad, but I’m almost certain they are these: http://www.ebay.com/itm/ONE-1987-Pontiac-Bonneville-5091-14-Wire-Hubcap-Wheel-Cover-01632242-USED/202547903550?fits=Model%3ABonneville%7CMake%3APontiac&epid=1129949050&hash=item2f28cbbc3e:g:eTsAAOSwIABcIuKk. No whitewalls, though.

      I’ll note that the ad also features an SE and SSE, which did get tighter suspension and steering and actually were pretty fun to drive. Haters gonna hate, but as I’ve commented in several threads in the past, the 8th-gen Bonneville SE was a great offering for its era and price point.

    • 0 avatar
      sgeffe

      The old Honda “We make it simple” ads were awesome, as were the Olds “we’ve had one built for you” ads.

  • avatar
    ajla

    Ajla’s favorite car ads:
    0. Lexus’s “Something Wicked” for the GS.
    1. 4th gen Trans Am “Stoplight” ads
    2. Lexus LS400 champagne flutes on the running engine.
    3. Chevy “Like a Rock”.
    4. Cadillac ELR ad making fun of French people.
    5. Mercedes C-Class “Reincarnation”.

    So more stuff like that.

  • avatar
    87 Morgan

    Like many, I loath the real people ads. They may be the worst ad campaign for a car ever produced. I welcome submissions for worse.

    However, the other night their was a new Chevy truck commercial during one of the football games and it was spectacular. I commented to my wife how strange it was for gm to come up with a decent ad spot.

    • 0 avatar
      crtfour

      GM mocking Ford’s “man step” was pretty bad. Also IIRC I believe they also mocked heated steering wheels in pickups.

    • 0 avatar
      Art Vandelay

      The best Chevy Truck commercial was the one where they all meet up following the Apocalypse and one friend is missing…because he drove a Ford. I’m a Ford guy and I thought it was hilarious.

      • 0 avatar
        Vulpine

        The best Chevy car commercials were the “See the USA in a Chevrolet”. But then, they almost always used a convertible to emphasize the SEE part.

        • 0 avatar
          dukeisduke

          The ’64 Impala on top of a giant rock formation (column) in Monument Valley.

          • 0 avatar
            Arthur Dailey

            Yes, Duke and Vulpine get it. Those are/were iconic commercials.

            Farrah Fawcett as the Mercury Cougar spokesperson. Stunning.

            The Ford/Lincoln commercials with the jeweler cutting a diamond in the back of the car, were also memorable.

            Does anyone else remember the ‘Pontiac wide track guy’? In one commercial he took a bat to the front of a Pontiac to demonstrate the ruggedness of its front bumper/hawk nose grill.

      • 0 avatar
        carguy67

        “The best Chevy Truck commercial was the one where they all meet up following the Apocalypse and one friend is missing…because he drove a Ford. I’m a Ford guy and I thought it was hilarious.”

        I’m a ‘Ford Guy’ too, and it got a chuckle from me. But, it’s an adage in the advertising business that you never mention the competition when you’re on top. Chevy keeps saying, subtly, that they’re playing catch up to Ford.

        • 0 avatar
          JimC2

          “But, it’s an adage in the advertising business that you never mention the competition when you’re on top. Chevy keeps saying, subtly, that they’re playing catch up to Ford.”

          The commercial would be a lot cleverer if they *almost* said the competitors’ names a bunch of times but block it out with well-timed horn honking noises, somebody interrupting the conversation at just the right moment, or whatever comedic devices work with the script. Maybe they should take notes from the Mahk parodies.

    • 0 avatar
      MLS

      I submit that the inane “THAT’S A BUICK?!” campaign is far worse than Chevy’s “Real People” series. The music alone makes me cringe.

      • 0 avatar
        Russycle

        Yeah, “Our cars don’t suck as much as you think!” is not a great theme.

        • 0 avatar
          Arthur Dailey

          Answering my own question, Paul Richards was the name of the actor in the Pontiac commercials. And it was a crowbar that he took to the nose of a GTO.

          Found this website. http://www.paulrichards.net/prcredits.htm

          TV Commercials – Like many actors, Paul Richards found a lucrative sideline in television commercials. PR pitched Pontiacs (say that three times fast!) in the late 1960’s. Perhaps his most famous Pontiac pitch was for the 1968 GTO. The bumper of the ’68 “Goat” was made of a new dent-resistant material called “Endura”. To demonstrate the endurance of Endura, pitchman Paul nonchalantly picks up a crowbar and proceeds to bash the bejabbers out of the bumper, which remains miraculously dent-free. When this ad first aired, skeptics wondered if PR was actually swinging a rubber crowbar. So, the ending of the ad was re-shot to show him tossing the crowbar onto a concrete floor. It lands with a resounding “clang,” proving that it was indeed made of metal.

          Paul Richards went wide-trackin’ in other Pontiac ads, including the following from the Pontiac Power website:

          1967 GTO: To avoid encouraging speed-crazy teens, Pontiac couldn’t show the newest GTO flying over hills or screeching through hairpin turns. So, PR was brought in to suavely introduce the car instead. He appears at the end after caressing each component of the car with his voice. (And, by the way, Paul Richards and Pontiac were the first to use the tagline “The Ultimate Driving Machine”, years before BMW!)

          Also this Pontiac commercial with an all-star cast of old time character actors.

          https://www.tapatalk.com/groups/monsterkidclassichorrorforum/1969-tv-commercial-t68224.html

        • 0 avatar
          28-Cars-Later

          Our cars don’t suck as much as you think! No, really!

      • 0 avatar
        87 Morgan

        MLS you might be correct. The underlying message is so bad if you take more than a minute or two to think about it. How those eve made it past idea phase escapes me.

    • 0 avatar
      whynotaztec

      Arthur I remember the Lincoln with the jeweler in the back. And snl spoofed it with a circumscision! And I miss Farrah terribly.

    • 0 avatar
      87 Morgan

      Answering my own question.

      I think the Lexus December to remember spots are horrific as well.

      I cant even describe the level of unglued myself or my spouse would achieve if the other ‘surprised’them with a 75k purchase.

  • avatar
    formula m

    Need more of the Toyota jump!

  • avatar
    MiataReallyIsTheAnswer

    There are plenty of bad ads but BY FAR the most ANNOYING to me is the “ding-dong” that Honda has been sticking at the beginning of every commercial for like 3 years now. It’s like “Hey you there that got up when the commercials started and are now in the kitchen – listen up!!”

  • avatar
    Urlik

    Mo trunk monkey!

  • avatar
    thelaine

    I like car ads that feature beautiful young women. Actually, it doesn’t matter what they’re selling. I understand that this makes me evil. Nevertheless, it is what it is…

  • avatar
    geozinger

    The “Real People” ads don’t bother me much, they’re more of the same old same old from advertising teams. To me, it’s just so much noise. Full disclosure, I’m also a GM fan.

    The ones that really got my disdain were (and remain) the Subaru ads. Especially the one where they took their old Subie out to the woods to return to earth or some such crap. Now *that’s* environmentally friendly… Or the one where they tout the environmentally friendliness of their ONE production plant in the US. (Note; all of the other manufacturers in the US do the same thing.) Or the dopey ads where they will donate to the cause of your choice when you buy a car and even put little emblems on the tailgate to virtue signal how good you are. Really? An automotive charm bracelet? At least the dog ones were kind of funny.

    The Chevy ads along with many of the rest are just background noise. I think they’d do better with more money to the zones to push individual deals instead of the overall ads. I agree with crtfour that the “themed” ads from the 1980’s were pretty good, but those days are over.

    • 0 avatar
      brettucks

      The commercial with the bulldogs doing the car wash is hilarious – but it doesnt really sell the car well.

    • 0 avatar
      MLS

      Oh god, no, please don’t give the zones any more money or autonomy. The regional ads are worse than national campaigns by a factor of 10. And if somehow manufacturers could bar individual dealerships from advertising, all the better.

  • avatar
    dthomso1

    You can never go wrong with singing animals:

  • avatar
    dougjp

    – A Barth Gimbell (Martin Mull) Fernwood 2Night talk show with a car salesman, about some car (more or less)!
    – Gary Busey doing more crazy ads for Kia !
    – Will Ferrell doing more Yodge commercials !
    – Karl Pilkington moaning about how bad the car (and its downhill sales slide) he’s promoting is !
    – Robert De Niro again selling the car’s trunk size advantages !

    Agree that car ads are almost always terrible, so might as well get a laugh at least.

  • avatar
    Art Vandelay

    It was mentioned above, but the greatest car ad ever made was GI-Joe picking up Barbie in a 300Z and tearing around a disappointed Ken to Van Halen.

    I’d also like more ads with trucks pulling other trucks with other trucks in their beds up huge rockpiles. Throw in some Hank Jr.

    Just show the car being driven agressively with some hair metal in the background though and I’m generally happy.

  • avatar
    Art Vandelay

    Oh yeah, wasnt there a Mazda ad with Ray Charles blasting across the desert laughing hysterically? That sort of ad works too.

  • avatar
    ceipower

    These ads are always based on the sizzle rather than the steak. IMO This round of Chevy “real People” ads do more harm then good. GM ranked higher than Toyota/Honda? Even if true in some odd ball survey, it smells of a set up. Much like those ads on Fords Truck beds vs. Chevys. A set Up. It actually hurts GM and smells of desperation.
    There’s nothing “real” about these Chevy Ads. All ads are bullshit.

    • 0 avatar
      JohnTaurus

      It was a setup, they ranked higher for the 2015 model year only, and only in one specific GM-commisioned survey.

      Ford, Honda and Toyota each protested, and they pulled the ad claiming it was only so they could instead promote the new Silverado. The term “All-new Silverado” was mentioned many times in the press release. Most *actual* (as in not manufacturer commissioned) studies rank Chevy below all three in reliability.

  • avatar
    tallguy130

    Can we get more talk about love and feelings? Maybe shown less of the car but give a lot of camera time to my daughter leaving for college or how my girlfriend’s dog doesn’t like me. Oh and vaguely center it around absurd road trips in the Pacific Northwest.

    That would really do it for me and get me pumped up to by a car..

    • 0 avatar
      vehic1

      tallguy130: +1

    • 0 avatar
      carguy67

      “… give a lot of camera time to my daughter leaving for college …”

      Ads are systematically trashing some of my favorite songs. The latest: Small Faces ‘Oo La La.’ There was one with an old Marvin Gaye song, and enough of ‘Na Na Hey Hey’ already (good song getting abused; used on at least two ads that I know of). And, Lord Huron’s gonna be remembered for car and clothing ads and not their work.

      • 0 avatar
        JimC2

        Don’t forget the recent Nissan commercial with the riff from Backdoor Santa/Christmas in Hollis. What a strange, strange choice for a car commercial, if you understand the subject material of the original song! Hehehe…

        (Look up Nissan 2018 Year End Sales Event.)

  • avatar
    Trend-Shifter

    I am so tired of all the generic “Branding” automotive commercials.
    Can’t they be more creative than showing life style visuals and music.

  • avatar
    slavuta

    I thought, this latest RDX commercial is pretty good

    Besides these Chevy things, most boring – Subaru

  • avatar
    jack4x

    I may be the only one, but I always thought the Dodge brothers commercials were pretty cool.

    The one where they race each other in 100 years worth of Dodge vehicles, culminating in twin Hellcats getting run off the road by a Viper was the best.

    • 0 avatar
      dukeisduke

      The weird thing is that both of them were dead by 1921, and both young.

    • 0 avatar
      WildcatMatt

      I loved the Dodge Brothers spots, too. Creative, playful, embracing of company heritage, and good display of product.

      From what little I know of John and Horace, they were less stuffy than many of the other Detroit execs and I find it very easy to imagine them doing exactly what the spots portray if they had lived to do it.

      As for their untimely deaths, a lot of people don’t realize just how bad the “Spanish flu” pandemic was.

  • avatar
    65corvair

    Both sides of an argument can use the exact same statistics to prove their point. I’m not going to replace my Honda with a Chevy.

  • avatar
    ajla

    People like to complain about the sappy Subaru ads, but they definitely understand their core audience. People I know that bought a new Subaru eat that stuff up.

    It’s like the old Dodge “That thing got a Hemi?” Ads. VW buyers might have thought they were stupid, but for likely Dodge purchasers it was effective.

    • 0 avatar
      thelaine

      Totally agree ajla. That is the message. You buy a Subaru because it is reliable and practical and so are you. A Subi is kind of a member of the family. “Look, that’s you leaving for college in our old Subaru.” It is very effective and Subi knows who is buying their cars. They can hardly build enough of them.

    • 0 avatar
      Peter Gazis

      Combine them both:
      Owner of a brand new Charger tells neibor: “I wrecked the Subaru”

  • avatar
    thelaine

    Matthew McConaughey’s Lincoln ads? Horror. But, I remember them, kind of, so maybe that’s the point.

  • avatar
    jatz

    I want both cars and ads for them that prioritize achieving safety and comfort in an increasingly overcrowded, violent and physically crumbling road environment.

  • avatar
    -Nate

    Subscribed for the comments .

    -Nate

  • avatar

    a separate Chair & CEO wouldn’t eliminate incompetence but would more clearly identify stupidity. I don’t do well with stupidity.

    I’m calling for the ouster of Ms. Barra. there’s no hope with her in charge. she doesn’t understand marketing and why her cars aren’t selling so she wants to build new ones that virtually no one wants. FIRE HER.

    http://generalwatch.com/editorials/editorial.cfm?EdID=193

  • avatar
    dukeisduke

    The new Mazda “Feel Alive” ads are terrible. I’ve told them so on their Instagram posts.

  • avatar

    The GM tailgate add that’s been playing is almost as painful as the real people adds. Especially after Chevy made fun of the ford tailgate step. I couldn’t find it online strangely enough.

    The new Ford add playing Eastbound and Down with all the Ford trucks towing stuff on the other hand is actually a pretty good advertisement.

  • avatar
    Vulpine

    First time I saw that “Eastbound and Down” commercial I had to laugh out loud as Smoky and the Bandit had just started on another channel. The movie sure wasn’t a proponent of Ford cars; very few even showed up in that movie.

    • 0 avatar
      WildcatMatt

      The problem I have with “Eastbound and Down” is now I can’t hear it without being reminded of the flashback in “Archer” where Sterling is a boy in a Bandit made out of cardboard.

  • avatar
    scott25

    Less CGI and rendered cars and more actual vehicles. More bright colours. More ads representative of each brands unique heritage and nationality.

  • avatar
    MoparRocker74

    Dodge has been nailing it. Granted, I was a fan anyway but they’re really tapping into why their customers buy them: we want powerful, stylish vehicles that are for having balls out fun. The cars deliver mightily on that promise, and if they didn’t then no commercial is going to make me want it.

    Period, end of story.

    What would I do? Id homage Pulp Fiction. Have Samuel L Jackson telling the valet to go get his car.

    “How will I know which one it is?”, he asks.

    “It’s the one that says “Bad M’Fer”.

    Then it would cut to the parking garage, youd see a car in the shadows, hear it fire up with a nasty snarl, four round headlights snap on and a black Challenger pulls into view as it goes back to Mr Jackson saying “that’s my Bad MF’er” with a smile. Yep fired on day one!

    Those chevy commercials are pretty garbage but the absolute WORST is when that skinny jeans man bun millennial refers to that cuv/minivan thing as a ‘bad mamma jamma’. BARF.

    Toyota and Subaru with their sappy diabetes inducing dreck are nothing less than disgusting. Feelings are stupid.

    • 0 avatar
      87 Morgan

      Yes, Sam J would be a great addition to the dodge commercial line up.

      Though, i submit that dodge has basically decided to give everyone else the finger with their dodge bros ads touting the hellcat powered everything, even though 1% or less of what is sold has a HC engine.
      Probably the best ads right now.

    • 0 avatar
      carguy67

      I’m not a Mopar fanboy, but I have to give Sergio Sweater credit for greenlighting the Hemi monsters. And, Alan Mulally for greenlighting the Raptor during a recession/gas crisis.

  • avatar
    danio3834

    I’m glad that the Chevy Real People Ads existed so we could have that funny parody series of them on that popular video hosting site.

  • avatar
    redapple

    We are evaluating commercials from many different perspectives.
    -Car Company Employee.
    -TV watcher > casual > entertainment perspective.
    -High logic – when a car maker makes a claim, you test the data or want to see it.
    – and so on.

    The intended objective is NARROW.
    Cement the brand image and appeal to buyer (existing and prospective.)

    Most opinions are of no use here.

  • avatar
    JimC2

    I submit to the B&B, go on youtube and search for

    If “Real People” Commercials were Real Life

    … just don’t do it on a work computer.

  • avatar
    RangerM

    “Have you ever yearned for an automaker’s ad team to strip away all of the bullshit, all of the focus group-spawned messaging, all of the touchy-feely, family-oriented niceness? I know I have. Put me in charge of a vehicle’s TV and online marketing, and I’d be booted out the door on day one.”

    You’re wish was granted a long time ago: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wYhqLRdZWZ0

    and, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Tu18idKitlU

  • avatar
    JohnTaurus

    This might sound weird, but when I was younger, I imagined making a commercial for a performance subcompact hatchback and using the song “Happy Organ”.

    I imagined this yellow little hatch screaming around corners and jumping over bumps, almost like if a puppy was a car, how he would play. Call it the Happy Hatchback commercial.

    Take your pick, Fiesta ST. Mini Cooper JCW, Fiat 500, Golf GTI, doesn’t matter. No words, just the car “having fun” and then a blurb at the end (in writing, not spoken word, as the song continues to play) about the make/model, price, etc.

    • 0 avatar
      Russycle

      The old GTI ad, to the tune of “Little GTO”, with German lyrics and “GTO” changed to “GTI” was kind of in that vein. One of my favorites.

      • 0 avatar
        Featherston

        Didn’t Pontiac adman Jim Wangers essentially co-author the lyrics to “Little GTO”? I’ve always been curious about the GTI ad–which was brilliant, IMO–with regard to intellectual property. Given that only 20 years separated the two versions of the song, there had to have been some longtime Pontiac execs who took umbrage at the VW version.

  • avatar
    mmreeses

    Bring back jill wagner, have her driving a lincoln while her inner monologue muses about controversial political topic xyz

  • avatar
    loner

    We need more Kia ghetto hamsters. In future ads, I’d like to see them do a drive-by, tag some buildings, and smoke some dope. That would be awesome.

    I’d also love to see some more truck commercials with slo-mo footage of the truck driving through mud, SUV commercials wildly spinning the tires as they burst through a snow drift, and CUV commercials where they splash through a mud puddle to show their off-road prowess.

    How about some sedan commercials where the Nav system tells them to drive erratically through alleys so they can get to Junior’s piano recital without having to wait in traffic?

    Or maybe a Subaru Forester commercial where the car is shown being driven 20 mph on a two-lane with 15 cars backed up behind it, unable to pass, as grandma peers over the steering wheel.

  • avatar
    Pete Zaitcev

    Aww, man. I know someone who was filmed in Chevy ads, together with his wife and kids. He said that they wanted a “real family”, not just actors playing a family. There’s a curious twist though: his kids are professional actors and he is their manager (in addition to his day job). So, on the one hand, there’s a mandate from the top: no fake families! Get us real ones! But on the other hand, they need someone who can act it out, because amateurs on the set look terrible on video. Solution: creative!

    • 0 avatar
      slavuta

      Bottom, line. For whatever reason that is, we knew from the start that this Chevy “real people” thing is bunch of brainwash. If you ever sit in Chevy truck and then go to Ram, you quickly understand where is krap and where is real thing. And you should start with JDPower “surveys”. JDP is marketing firm and who pays that what they market. I would rather believe consumer reports.

  • avatar
    C W

    The advertising agency’s perennial challenge: Make a silk-purse ad out of a sow’s-ear product.

    It’s a lot easier when what’s being sold actually HAS advantages. Exhibit A (on YouTube): “What does the snowplow driver drive to the snowplow?”

    (Yep, I bought one. I drove it for decades until I finally wore it absolutely, completely, totally out. I still miss it sometimes.)

  • avatar
    vehic1

    Chevy “real people” – BS.
    “That’s a Buick?” – gag.
    Kia Soul “gerbils” – well, maybe OK for strictly the LGBT market.
    Subaru “love ‘n’ dogs” – certainly worked for awhile, although I never saw the slightest logical connection with Subaru autos.

  • avatar
    whynotaztec

    If you are my age and from Boston you remember “Chevy nova 500”. Great now the jingle is stuck in my head

  • avatar
    TDIGuy

    Links to youtube don’t seem to be working, so I’ll try this:

    “You can never go wrong with singing animals”

    …Or singing toes. Remember the Dodge SX 2.0 commercial? (youtube search “dodge born to be alive”)

    Nobody really trusts commercial nowadays, which is probably while the Chevy commercials were so annoying. A trend in commercials right now is to make the product subtle. The commercial is something you want to watch and they sneak a mention of the product in at the end: (youtube search “John Lewis & Partners Christmas Ad 2018”)

    I always liked this one though: (youtube search “richard petty dodge srt series commercial”)

  • avatar
    Jeff S

    The real people ads were a distant memory to the bearded spokesman as he collected his last paycheck and went off into the sunset in his BMW.

    Is that a Buick? of course it is Chinese.

  • avatar
    jfk-usaf

    I’m no fan of their cars but the Cadillac adds are not painful to watch. The girl inside the window at the end of one of the XT5 was stunning. Most car adds do suck though. Maybe just the basics. Show me the interior, show me the car doing different things in different places.
    Chevy adds do suck terribly though… potentially more so than the quality of the interior materials they use or the super thin steel skin they use for exterior panels.

  • avatar
    el scotto

    Some ads I remember: Nissan; Dogs love trucks. Cadillac; Welcome to the league of gentlemen, gentlemen and the one ad that played Led Zeppelin. Because GM is GM (stupid is as stupid does) the Chevy ads are inane and the guy in the new Buick ads needs punched in the face. Repeatedly. Oh and Alfa Romeo’s Giulia ads.

  • avatar
    jatz

    MOST EFFECTIVE CAR AD EVAH:

    The crane shot of the Volvo wagon managing to escape the supermarket lot full of ’70s Detroit brontowagons in a pelting rain.

  • avatar
    carguy67

    Can’t believe Ford hasn’t done ads with Wilson Pickett’s ‘Mustang Sally’ blasting in the background. All they have to do is find the prettiest Sally around hotdogging a convertible ‘Stang.

  • avatar
    pdq

    I liked Volvo’s “Drive It Like You Hate It” commercial from the 60’s. It conveyed that the cars were rugged and could be driven hard. I liked Mercury’s “Cartier jeweler in the back seat cutting a diamond” because it illustrated the smoothness of the ride in a mid-luxury Mercury Marquis. I liked the Ford “Quality is Job One” and Chrysler’s “If you can find a better car, buy it” featuring Lee Iacocca. On the last two, I felt both automakers were being upfront and honest about their past transgressions and trying to make the case that they were working hard to address them.

  • avatar
    Jeff S

    Some of my favorite ads are the Sam Elliott Ram ads. His voice could sell anything.

  • avatar
    carguy67

    Just saw this Chevy ad today (Thursday) at 3:10pm PST, so they’re still in rotation.

    Anybody else have to suffer ‘Jan’ from the ‘Toyotathon’ commercials? She creeps me out for some reason.

  • avatar
    wayneoh

    Steve McQueen walking out of the cornfield and taking the flipped keys in the Mustang GT commercial is hard to beat.

  • avatar
    trackratmk1

    The only good thing about the Real People ads were the “Mahk hates Chevy” YouTube spoofs. Pure gold.

    IMO the perfect car commercial has been done. It was for the first Cayenne GTS. It was simple, gorgeously shot, with the car perched on a shadowy hilltop and there were no words… only the owner calmly reflecting on his current bit of fortune. Then he breaks the silence and revs the snot out of that bellowing V-8 as it echoes in the distance. Perfect. To this day it’s the only SUV I have a crush on.

  • avatar
    Goatshadow

    Two words: Black Gold.

  • avatar
    phila_DLJ

    Less Chevy Ad Eunuch, More Sir Jackie Stewart!

  • avatar
    tankinbeans

    I nominate the post Fiat merger Chrylser ads as being pretty bad.

    Imported From Detroit. What!? Is that a suggestive way of saying these cars were extruded from something?

  • avatar
    AdamOfAus

    They should ask Gillette for some tips… or not.

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