Jeep Liberty Ready To Roll

DaimlerChrysler AG on Wednesday launched an ad campaign that presents its new Jeep Liberty compact sport-utility vehicle — the first new Jeep marquee since the Grand Cherokee in 1993 — in urban settings.

Six 30-second spots and 11 print executions position the Liberty as “The Next Great Jeep Idea.” The campaign theme but follows a recent marketing trend toward urbanizing SUVs, as Ford Motor Co. did with its Mercury Mountaineer.

The TV spots break the week of June 18 on NBC’s NBA broadcasts, NHL games on ABC and cable programs like Outdoor Life.

Though he wouldn’t disclose the budget, Tom Marinelli, evp, Chrysler/Jeep Division Global Brand Center, said, “You could equate it what we spent on the PT Cruiser launch.”

Chrysler spent $37.1 million promoting the PT Cruiser in 2000, according to estimates by Competitive Media Reporting. Jeep spent $309 million overall.

Creative, via BBDO unit Pentamark Worldwide, Troy, Mich., confronts the irony of Jeep as an urban vehicle. For example, the 30-second “Natural Attractions” spot follows a Liberty down a city street as a tree uproots itself from a park and accompanies the vehicle — and so on until the Liberty is a moving parasol of trees.

The Liberty is scheduled to be available this summer for prices beginning just over $17,000, in the range of the Cherokee, which is being phased out.