I though it would be a good idea to aggregate the 2012 Super Bowl “Big Game” XLVI (46) commercials from the car companies. So far, there are a few clear winners.  Before “The Big Game,” these were the top three commercials that “went viral” ensuring a good return on investment:

  1. Acura NSX (a car that won’t be available for 2-3 years) – “Transactions” with Jerry Seinfield and Jay Leno
  2. VW Beetle Prequel – “The Bark Side” featuring an amazing chorus of dogs barking out the Imperial March (Darth Vader’s Theme Song) from Star Wars.  John Williams is probably laughing and cashing the check with earplugs firmly in place.
  3. Honda CR-V – “Matthew’s Day Off” in which Matthew Broderick reprises his immortal role from 1986’s Ferris Bueller’s Day Off.

The all-new Toyota Camry is so important to Toyota’s recovery after a disastrous 2011 that it earns itself two excellent commercials.  “It’s Reinvented” is decidedly un-homophobic and refreshing while “Connections” tugs at the heart strings. Toyota wants to steal Chevy’s theme, “Chevy Runs Deep” and “Connections” is as close as it gets to remind Generations X and Y that they grew up with 7 million Camrys and it’s part of their DNA.

Volkswagen is back with two great ads for the 2012 Beetle (just don’t call it the “New Beetle”).  “The Dog Strikes Back” takes doggie aerobics to a new level with a tinge of Darth Vader while its prequel, “The Bark Side” needs a few seconds to warm up before you catch the tune.

I love the new Chevy Sonic “Stunt Action” spot not just for its amazing stunts but for its use of the  infectious anthem to youth, “We Are Young.”  It targets more than 70 million Generation Y/The Boomerang Generation/The Millennial Generation (~1982 – 2000) that automakers so desperately are courting.  The song sort of burst out from nowhere on the December 7, 2011 episode of Glee, as the song was used to end the episode in anthem form.  The YouTube clip has been viewed more than 4.6 million times.  Since GM/Chevrolet is a big sponsor of Glee, the tie in makes perfect sense. The Sonic commercial uses the original song from an album to be released on February 21, 2012 by the previously-obscure group, Fun.

Chrysler had to come up with a follow up to last year’s sensational “Born Of Fire” feel-good, edgy ode to the Motor City featuring hometown rap superstar Eminem.  That didn’t happen.

However I think “It’s Halftime In America,” (below) featuring Clint Eastwood, was a fitting tribute to the American auto industry and that it hit the right tone for a reborn Chrysler.  Here’s a portion of Mr. Eastwood’s narration:

This country can’t be knocked out with one punch. We get right back up again and when we do the world is going to hear the roar of our engines.

I’m a big Eastwood fan – both his acting and directing – and I liked his gritty, aged voice that called for unity and moving forward.  In his simple, beautiful, powerful 2008 film Gran Torin, Mr. Eastwood played a retired Ford auto worker who felt out of place in his hometown, Detroit, once the center and symbol of America’s industrial worldwide dominance. He not only directed himself, but wrote the music for this tragic and touching story.

The haters are already filling the blogs with disdain and jeers; but I’m in the mood to be sentimental about the vital importance of a domestic auto industry with good, middle-class wages and benefits. It may not last, but I’ll hang on to that fantasy for a little bit longer.

Acura NSX: Transactions (Extended Version)


Audi: Vampire Party


BMW 3-Series: The Close Call


BMW 3-Series: The Big Grab


BMW 3- Series: The Perfect Seat


BMW 3-Series: The Entertainer



BMW 3-Series: The Twins


BMW 3-Series: The Score


Cadillac ATS: Green Hell


Chevrolet Corvette: Chevy Driving Academy – Man to Driver


Chevrolet: Half Suit – Rainn Wilson


Chevrolet Cruze: Long Day


Chevrolet Camaro: Happy Graduation


Chevrolet Silverado: 2012


Chevrolet Silverado: 2012 – Rainn Wilson Commentary


Chevrolet Sonic: Stunt Anthem (“We Are Young)


Chevrolet Sonic: Joy


Chevrolet Volt: Aliens 1 – Come on


Chevrolet Volt: Aliens 2 – Who told?


Chrysler: It’s Halftime in America (Clint Eastwood)


Fiat 500 Abarth: Seduction


Honda CR-V: Matthew’s Day Off (Extended Version)


Hyundai: All For One


Hyundai Genesis Coupe: High Power Business Tips – Gaining an Edge


Hyundai Veloster Turbo: Cheetah


Hyundai Genesis R-Spec: Faster Acting


Hyundai Genesis Coupe R-Spec: Think Fast


Hyundai Elantra: Victory Lap


Kia Optima: A Dream Car. For Real Life. [Extended Version]


Lexus GS350: Beast


Mazda: Revolution


Suzuki Kizashi: Sled


Toyota Camry : It’s Reinvented


Toyota Camry Hybrid: Two Worlds


Toyota Camry: The Camry Effect: Connections


Volkswagen Beetle: The Dog Strikes Back


Volkswagen Beetle: The Bark Side (Teaser for The Dog Strikes Back)

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