The Best and Worst Car Commercials From Super Bowl LIII
Super Bowl LIII has come and gone, and with it came a smattering of car commercials from some of the biggest automakers in the world. Let’s get it out of the way off the bat. This was a weird year for car commercials in the Super Bowl in part because most of the commercials actually didn’t air during the game. Sure, there were a handful of ads from Toyota, Kia, Audi, Hyundai, and Mercedes-Benz, but most of the ads actually ended up on YouTube instead of our TVs. Perhaps it was a way for automakers to save $5 million or so on these TV ads, but if you really want check out all the commercials that these car companies made for the big game, YouTube was the place to be. As for the commercials that actually made the air, well, let’s just say that this wasn’t a particularly impressive year for these ads. There were high spots, but we’re not going remember any of them the way we remember Volkswagen’s Little Darth Vader ad or Chrysler’s tribute to Detroit, featuring Eminem. Those are iconic commercials that are still talked about to this day. As far as this year’s ads go? Let’s hope we can remember one of them in a month’s time.
Dodge, Jeep and Ram Are Rolling Out Muscle-Flexing Commercials for Super Bowl LIII
Fiat Chrysler Automobiles is going to be well-represented at Super Bowl LIII with three commercials from its three major brands: Dodge, Jeep, and RAM. The commercials, which range from 45 seconds to 90 seconds, are all promoting tasty machinery, including two all-new models from Jeep and RAM, specifically the Gladiator pickup and the RAM Heavy Duty pickup, respectively. The Dodge commercial, on the other hand, is promoting its SRT lineup, headlined by the Challenger SRT. The Dodge Charger SRT and the Dodge Durango SRT also feature prominently in the commercial in the 45-second spot.
Butthurt Alert: Ram Superbowl Commercial Sparks Outrage
As expected, Super Bowl LII had its fair share of commercials. There were some good ones, and there were some bad ones. None of them, though, were as controversial as the Ram commercial that used a portion of Martin Luther King Jr’s speech. To say that it wasn’t well-received would be an understatement. It was panned, criticized, and obliterated for using the speech as a means to sell Ram trucks, a clear misinterpretation of the actual message of King’s speech. But given what we’ve come to know since, was it really a case of insensitivity on Ram’s part or was it all a big misunderstanding of the ad’s real purpose?
Ram 1500 Super Bowl LII Ad Takes Subtle Shot at Minnesota Vikings
There’s something to be said for a commercial that nails it with the subtlest of hints. I’ll submit this ad for the new 2019 Ram 1500 pickup as a perfect example of that. The theme of the ad centers around a group of Icelandic Vikings who make the trip to Minnesota from Iceland to watch Super Bowl LII, presumably because they thought the Minnesota Vikings were actually playing in it. From there, hilarity — and a fitting closing tagline — ensues.
Ram Tugs on Heartstrings with Veteran-Honoring TV Commercial
Ram is no stranger to creating heartwarming, tear-jerking TV commercials. The latest is titled “Airplane Rescue” and depicts an aging WWII veteran and his ambitious grandson driving a Ram 1500 Limited through an airplane graveyard in search of a Grumman F6F Hellcat Navy Fighter. The pair find the plane in a dilapidated condition covered in weathered rags and pelted with desert sand. Using the Ram 1500, the fighter plane is towed into a hanger for restoration. Ram debuted the 30-second TV spot on May 20, 2017 to celebrate Armed Forces Day.
Making the fictitious commercial more interesting is its true back-story. The veteran is Art Frankel, a real-life retired member of the Army Air Corps. He served in WWII as a topographic draftsman assigned to draw maps of territory from an airplane flying above. The fighter plane is actually one of only five surviving F6F Hellcats still in flying condition. The Hellcat was the U.S. Navy’s primary carrier-based fighter in the second half of WWII in the Pacific Theater. It’s powered by a 2,000-horsepower Pratt & Whitney radial engine and was armed with six, M2/AN Browning .50-caliber machine guns in the wings. The airplane is also the namesake for the supercharged, 6.2-liter Hellcat V-8 offered in several Fiat Chrysler vehicles.
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Did You See Ram’s Thanksgiving Day Commercial?
Ram Trucks aired a deep, thought-provoking commercial on Thanksgiving Day, honoring the unsung heroes of the blue-collar class. Called “Praise,” the 90-second TV spot mentions things hard-working folks commonly be thankful for – and some things that aren’t generally though of. One string of poetry reads, “Praise the line worker and the line, praise the foreman and the floor, praise the second shift early Saturday, praise the candle lit at both ends…”
The commercial aired during NFL football games on CBS and FOX on Thursday, November 24, 2016. It combined with Ram’s heavy appearance in the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade earlier that day. For two years now, Ram has been the official truck of the Macy’s Parade where 25 Ram trucks pulled the floats down the crowded streets of New York City.
“Praise” isn’t the first poetic commercial Ram has produced that targets blue-collars. Ram debuted “Farmer” during the 2013 Super Bowl – an iconic and picturesque two-minute piece with moving images of farmers hard at work mixed with the original reading of famed radio host Paul Harvey’s “And God made a Farmer” speech.
Ram also appealed to women in its 2015 TV commercial, “Courage.” The spot contained motivational words about harnessing inner strength and prevailing against the odds, with imagines of conquering the elements of Mother Nature and the inner demons of self-doubt.
Don’t count of “Praise” being the last heart-felt commercial we see from Ram. These spots seem to be garnering tons of attention and acclaim. Let up know what you think in the comments below.
Ram Truck Expands Partnership With Chris Stapleton
Country music superstar Chris Stapleton and Ram Trucks have expanded their partnership in an effort to help promote volunteerism and hometown pride, among other honorable values this past week.
Stapleton, with the help of Ram Nation, a volunteer group of Ram Truck owners, put together an outdoor stage at Stapleton’s hometown high school. The two-time Grammy winner then performed two free concerts and announced the donation of $57,000 worth of new band instruments for the school. His return to Paintsville, Kentucky is documented in Ram’s “Built Here” video above.
Chris Stapleton is becoming a household name thanks to his latest album “Traveller” and the slew of awards it brought the Kentucky native. Even before his debut album, Stapleton wrote for several well-known country singers, including Luke Bryan, Miranda Lambert, Dierks Bentley, Darius Rucker, Blake Shelton, Kenny Chesney, Brad Paisley, and Tim McGraw. For those not familiar with country music, Stapleton’s work extends outside Nashville, having penned, “if It Hadn’t Been Love” for Adele.
The instruments were donated by ACM Lifting Lives, the charitable arm of the Academy of Country Music via its partnership with the Mr. Holland’s Opus Foundation. Ram Trucks then sponsored the Paintsville activities as part of an ongoing relationship with Stapleton that began in 2015.
“While the story of Chris Stapleton may not be widely known, it’s one of pride, dedication, and perseverance – all values important to our Ram truck owners,” said Marissa Hunter, Director of Brand Advertising, FCA US. "It was a great opportunity and honor for us to go back to Paintsville with Chris to document his return to the place that built his character and work ethic.”
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Ram Trucks offers up a big hat-tip to the ladies in its “Courage is Already Inside,” 60-second commercial that’s set to play during the 141st Running of the Kentucky Derby on Saturday, May 2.
The ad takes a rather different approach to promoting Ram trucks – foregoing the whiskey and gravel voice of Sam Elliot for a softer, yet just as confident female voiceover that celebrates the courageous women who dare to break stereotypes and overcome the odds.
The video includes images of well-known accomplished women like Eva Shockey, the first woman to make the cover of Field and Stream magazine in 30 years; Tiana Falls, a professional motorcross racer; Miranda Lambert, the ACM’s most-awarded female vocalist; and of course, Rosie Napravnik, the American Thoroughbred horse racing jockey and two-time winner of the Kentucky Oaks.
Ram hasn’t put Sam Elliot out to pasture, however. The truck maker is also debuting a second commercial entitled “The Pack” featuring his cowboy-esque voice work. Ram says the commercial takes a more “lighthearted” approach and features a sheepdog interacting with the herd. After retiring to a hill to watch the sheep, the dog is joined by a lone sheep, apparently looking to take a place of leadership with the dog. The Farmer then arrives – in his Ram truck, of course – and joins the pair.
Both commercial spots are designed to signify Ram’s leadership among U.S. truck builders and its steady growth in the market since its 2009 inception.
Continue reading to see both the commericals
Ram Trucks advertisements are about to get a lot more musical thanks to a cross promotion deal struck between the automaker and country music start Miranda Lambert. The advertising campaign’s theme is “Roots and Wings,” titled after Lambert’s one-off song penned exclusively for the deal.
Besides the music video that accompanies Lambert’s song, (below the jump) the “Roots and Wings” campaign will appear in print ads, as well as TV, digital, and social media spots with both long- and short-format videos.
“[The campaign] will broaden the appeal of both of our brands beyond our core audiences as we connect with our respective fans in new, meaningful ways,” says Olivier Francois, Chief Marketing Officer for FCA – Global, about Ram and Miranda Lambert. “Building a new marketing campaign around the hugely successful and popular country music artist, and her original song inspired by the characteristics of our brand, is a first for Ram.”
In other words, the same folks who like country music generally like pickup trucks and vice versa.
Lambert’s promotion of Ram also continues on her touring schedule. Her concert series – unsurprisingly called the Certified Platinum tour – will feature a Ram 1500 EcoDiesel Laramie Longhorn as its official vehicle. The truck will even be pulling Lamberts personal Airstream trailer, lovingly called “Wanda the Wanderer.” The truck is just like the one Lambert owns and uses on her ranch, even down to the silver exterior.
This may be Ram’s first time partnering with a country star, but the idea has already been done, to a certain degree, by Chevrolet. Remember those “Like a Rock” commercials with music by Bob Seger? That turned out to be one of the most successful automotive ad campaigns to date. Let’s hope Ram can cash in on the idea as well.
Click past the jump to read more about Ram’s new campaign.