Adventures in Marketing: BMW Says "OK Boomer" to Its Own Flagship Vehicles
BMW published a four-minute and change ad a couple weeks ago for the start of the virtual CES 2021 show. Though this would not normally be a subject worth covering, this particular ad seems to indicate BMW believes their own E65 7-Series is for ridiculous out of touch Boomers.
Marketing departments always know what they’re doing, right?
A Story of Generations starts off with a portrayal of a circa 2008 760Li giving a “Get off my lawn!” speech to the upcoming iX crossover, BMW’s connected smart EV of the future. The iX has arrived to replace the 7-Series on a special platform at BMW HQ. The ad follows the two cars’ conversation, with the condescending and youthful iX talking to the out of touch and ancient 2008 760Li, “Hi Grandpa!”
Mocked are the 7-Series’ consumption, lack of connected capability, and generally terrible Boomer characteristics. “How do you even know what a real car is?”
The iX continues, “It’s just impossible to talk to your generation,” expanding the criticism to, I suppose, everything BMW produced circa 2008? What a stupid car, it doesn’t even talk to you in a connected, Alexa-type way! And those screen graphics! Who could ever live with that?
“An immersive experience,” iX says. “Marketing bullshit!” 7-Series replies. Ya got that right.
BMW explains the ad “A firstly superficial bragging and mocking conversation turns into a lesson about development, interdependence and caring.” The first half of that statement is certainly correct. “Future? Recycling yard,” says the iX. BMW really doesn’t want anyone to own the product they made before the iX. Around the middle of the ad, the 7-Series tries to connect to the internet, and a dial-up sound is made because people used dial-up in 2008. An electrical fault ensues because old BMWs have bad electrics, and the iX responds “OMG, did you just die?”
At that point the tone turns toward conciliatory, and the iX wants to learn things from the drunken 7-Series which actually tasted gasoline like a barbarian. She says to the 7 she just denigrated, “You are a true classic.” Clearly, BMW doesn’t believe this. The “lesson” portion of the ad is very short, and limited to about 15 seconds of the 4-minute, 16-second runtime.
At the end, the iX and 7-Series are pictured together on the platform, because they get along now and there’s space for both of them. But there actually isn’t, because the BMW employee in the start of the ad said the 7-Series had to be moved elsewhere.
The ad is too long, too cringeworthy, and sends a big middle finger to owners of older BMWs who might enjoy a car as ancient as 2008. Imagine what BMW must think of their cars from the Nineties and Eighties? The “OK Boomer” message is a poorly chosen one, and the focus on how crap your own flagship vehicle was just a few years ago isn’t the best messaging. After all, BMW was happy to sell you that new 760 in 2008, for a whopping $124,000.
But somehow this ad made it through the various levels of review and approval at BMW New Cars Only LLC. At least the message is out there now: Never buy a used BMW, because not even BMW thinks that’s a good idea.
Interested in lots of cars and their various historical contexts. Started writing articles for TTAC in late 2016, when my first posts were QOTDs. From there I started a few new series like Rare Rides, Buy/Drive/Burn, Abandoned History, and most recently Rare Rides Icons. Operating from a home base in Cincinnati, Ohio, a relative auto journalist dead zone. Many of my articles are prompted by something I'll see on social media that sparks my interest and causes me to research. Finding articles and information from the early days of the internet and beyond that covers the little details lost to time: trim packages, color and wheel choices, interior fabrics. Beyond those, I'm fascinated by automotive industry experiments, both failures and successes. Lately I've taken an interest in AI, and generating "what if" type images for car models long dead. Reincarnating a modern Toyota Paseo, Lincoln Mark IX, or Isuzu Trooper through a text prompt is fun. Fun to post them on Twitter too, and watch people overreact. To that end, the social media I use most is Twitter, @CoreyLewis86. I also contribute pieces for Forbes Wheels and Forbes Home.
More by Corey Lewis
Latest Car ReviewsRead more
Latest Product ReviewsRead more
- Mia Hey there!I recently stumbled upon the Crack Eraser DIY Windshield Repair Kit (check it out here: https://crackeraser.com/collections/diy-windshield-repair-kits) and decided to give it a shot on a small chip in my windshield. I have to say, it worked like a charm! Super easy to use, and it saved me a trip to the professionals. If you're dealing with a similar issue, this kit is definitely worth considering. 😊
- Rust-MyEnemy Whoa, what the hell is wrong with Jalop1991 and his condescension? It's as if he's employed by Big Plug-In or something."I've seen plenty of your types on the forums....."Dunno what that means, but I'm not dead keen on being regarded as "A type" by a complete stranger"" I'm guessing you've never actually calculated by hand the miles you've driven against the quantity of gas used--which is your actual miles per gallon."Guess again. Why the hell would you even say that? Yes, I worked it out. Fill-to-fill, based on gas station receipts. And it showed me that a Vauxhall Astra PHEV, starting out with a fully charged PHEV battery, in Hybrid mode, on my long (234-mile) daily motorway daily commute, never, over several months, ever matched or beat the economy of the regular hybrid Honda Civic that I ran for a similar amount of time (circa 5000 miles)."You don't use gasoline at all for 30-40 miles as you use exclusively battery power, then your vehicle is a pure hybrid. Over 234 miles, you will have used whatever gas the engine used for 200 of those miles."At least you're right on that. In hybrid mode, though, the Astra was using battery power when it wasn't at all appropriate. The petrol engine very rarely chimed in when battery power was on tap, and as a result, the EV-mode range quickly disappeared. The regular hybrid Civic, though, deployed its very small electric reserves (which are used up quickly but restore themselves promptly), much more wisely. Such as when on a trailing throttle or on a downward grade, or when in stop-start traffic. As a result, at the end of my 234 miles, the Civic had used less gas than the Astra. Moreover, I hadn't had to pay for the electricity in its battery.I look forward to you arguing that what actually happened isn't what actually happened, but I was there and you were not."Regardless, that you don't understand it appears not to have stopped you from pontificating on it. Please, do us all a favor--don't vote."You really are quite unpleasant, aren't you. But thanks for the advice.
- Tassos Jong-iL Electric vehicles are mandated by 2020 in One Korea. We are ahead of the time.
- 1995_SC Can you still get some of the tax credits under the new program?
- Analoggrotto HyundaiGenesisKia saw this coming a long time ago and are poised for hybrid and plug-in hybrid segment leadership:[list=1][*] The most extensive range of hybrids[/*][*]Highest hybrid sales proportion over any other model [/*][*]Best YouTube reviews [/*][*]Highest number of consumer reports best picks [/*][*]Class leading ATPs among all hybrid vehicles and PHEVs enjoy segment bearing eATPs[/*][/list=1]While some brands like Toyota have invested and wasted untold fortunes into full range electric lineups HyundaiKiaGenesis has taken the right approach here.