Lights, Camera, Cadill-action!: This Year’s Auto Marketing Campaigns

With the increasing variety of cars entering the automotive market, car companies are investing more time and energy into more captivating advertising campaigns.  But simple advertising is no longer enough, to grab a consumer’s attention, the advertisement must be unique, witty, and grab your attention. Often times, famous actors will be paid to star in the advertisements or great directors are brought in to create advertising masterpieces.

Setting the Standard

One recent advertising campaign comes from automotive giant, Cadillac; its latest high performance car, the Cadillac ATS. Its marketing pitch – Cadillac ATS vs the World. The premise, as illustrated on their website, they have developed the greatest luxury sedan that is “Setting the standard in every corner on earth” and to prove it they are going to drive the ATS on some of the toughest road conditions in amazing parts of the world. It’s really fun to watch. Check it out:

Actor and adventurer, Ross Thomas and Derek Hill, a former Formula 3000 driver, star as the drivers and ‘explorers’ in a series of films showcasing the ATS in unusual and spectacular driving conditions. From extreme winds in Patagonia, narrow and twisty roads in the Dadès Gorge in Morocco, the Grand Prix circuit in Monaco, to tricky manoeuvres through the Guoliang Tunnel in China, the pair are filmed in high energy and extreme conditions showcasing the Cadillac’s amazing driving capabilities.

Helicopters, shots of desert camel rides, aerial photography and creative camera angles are used to increase the interest and intrigue of the ATS, making it no longer just a sedan. The car is elevated to a machine that can achieve anything and be driven anywhere. It is a movie star in an action film. According to, the Cadillac ads were premiered during the London Olympics Opening Ceremony telecast. Forbes continues to say that  interest in the ATS on the website increased by 351 per cent after the first 60 seconds of the advertisement being viewed.

BMW Gets In On the Action

Cadillac isn’t the first company to attempt long feature length advertisements showcasing the speed, agility and beauty of their cars. In 2001/02, BMW released a series of eight short films starring Clive Owen under the title “The Hire.” In each James Bond style film, Owen was the driver and while performing each mission, the BMW would feature as a marvel of automobile engineering.

This cross over between car advertising and movie production is becoming more necessary for car brands to stand out from competitors. Cadillac has made a huge investment in this latest marketing campaign and it appears to be having a positive affect on their sales. However the balance between the amount spent on the production of the films and the profit made on sales needs to be considered and in the current financial market it can be a very fine line between success and failure.

Danielle started out as a car show enthusiast and eventually started to write about them. She is thrilled that she can finally write about something she loves.


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