With the arrival of spring, love is in the air in Volkswagen’s new “Luv Bug” commercial—which, contrary to what you might think, isn’t for its classic “love bug” Beetle but for its seven-seater Atlas.
The ad kicks off with some actual love going down in a VW bug overlooking a cityscape. As the couple’s family grows, the Beetle gets swapped out for progressively bigger vehicles, from the Jetta to the Atlas.
Let’s just say each one gets some lovin’ treatment.
The 1:00 spot is punctuated by Dean Martin’s “The Birds and the Bees.” Aptly, wildlife does play a role, as witnesses to this pair’s passion. But the real stars here are the succession of Volkswagen models, which play a pretty blunt role in family affairs (especially its growth, which the brand both fosters and profits from, a weirdly blunt commercial symbiosis).
It’s been a rough couple of years for Volkswagen post-Dieselgate, which will likely end with a settlement deal in which the brand promises to pay out $1.2 billion via cash or buyback deals to U.S. diesel owners—this, among other things, atop a $4.3 billion settlement for false advertising. In a tiny amount of time, a brand, whose work (especially around the Beetle) consistently charmed us, lost 55 years of accrued goodwill and must scratch its way back into our good graces.
To its credit, “Luv Bug” signals a dogged desire to advance with trademark brand quirkiness, as opposed to folding conservatively inward. Still, use of the Beetle’s nickname is clearly a nostalgic tug at our heartstrings, pining for a time when our relationship was more loving and less fraught.
In a way, the sight of a couple continuing their youthful in-car sex antics well into a grownup relationship—usually a point when people opt for a more comfortable choice, like their own bed—also feels like a sorry lover’s appeal: Remember the wild, unpredictable passion we used to share? I still have that for you!
“Luv Bug” was created by Deutsch, Volkswagen’s longtime U.S. agency, and debuted Monday in prime-time programming, including Fox’s 24 Legacy. It will also run during the Final Four and Stanley Cup playoffs, among other highly visible touchpoints.
President, CEO: Hinrich Woebcken
VP, Marketing: Vinay Shahani
Director, Marketing Communications and Media: Jennifer Clayton
Advertising Manager, VW Marketing: Chanel Barresi
Brand Advertising Senior Specialist: Tammy Nguyen
Chief Creative Officer, North America: Pete Favat
Executive Creative Director: Todd Riddle
Group Creative Director: Heath Pochucha
Creative Director: Zaid Al-Asady
Creative Director: Paul Oberlin
Creative Director: Matt Sherman
Director of Integrated Production: Vic Palumbo
Executive Integrated Producer: Margaret Nickerson
Senior Integrated Producer: Samantha Bonom
Music Supervisor: Eryk Rich
Group Account Director: Tom Else
Account Director: Alex Gross
Account Supervisor: Erin Shanahan
Account Executive: Nate Pouley
Director of Product Information: Jason Clark
Product Information Supervisor: Chris Brown
Co-Director of Strategy: Susie Lyons
Senior Strategist: Ben Perreira
Junior Strategist: Leigh Citarella
Director of Integrated Business Affairs: Abilino Guillermo
Group Director Integrated Business Affairs: Gabriela Farias
Director or Broadcast Traffic: Carie Bonillo
Broadcast Traffic Manager: Courtney Tylka
Director: Andreas Nilsson
Executive Producer: Holly Vega
Line Producer: Jay Veal
Cut + Run
Executive Producer: Amburr Farls
Producer: Annabelle Dunbar-Whittaker
Editor: Steve Gandolfi
Assistant Editor: Luc Giddens
Executive Producer: Rich Rama
Creative Director: David Parker
Producer: Ben Sposato
Executive Producer: Ashley McKim
Colorist: Sean Coleman
Licensed Music Track Info:
Licensed Music for “Snowboard”
Track – “The Birds & The Bees”
Artist: Dean Martin
Audio Post Company
Executive Producer: Susie Boyajan
Audio Engineer: Matt Miller
Los Angeles area