Mini Rides With ‘Mavericks’

NEW YORK Crispin Porter + Bogusky’s latest print work for BMW’s Mini revives a form of illustration popular in the 1960s and ’70s that rendered customized hot rods on T-shirts and collectible cards.

The ad, “Mini Mavericks,” consists of a sheet of eight perforated cards depicting customized Minis with cartoonish figures riding in them. A purple mohawked, tattooed man rides a customized yellow Mini, for example, while a man with a Cheshire cat grin and a monkey are in a souped-up silver Mini with racing stripes. In the middle of the sheet of cards, copy reads, “Let’s avoid the middle of the road,” along with the tagline, “Let’s motor.”

In addition to the print ad, which runs in October, November and December magazines including Details and Playboy, there will be billboards and wild postings featuring the Minis and their characters. A limited edition card not in the ad will be available at Mini dealerships beginning in November.

“Mini fans like to collect Mini stuff,” said Michael McHale, communications manager for Mini in Woodcliff Lake, N.J. “We thought we’d give them a perfect opportunity.”

Adam Cruz of House Industries in Yorklyn, Del., illustrated the ad, which was partly inspired by co-art director Ronny Northrop’s large collection of hot rod paraphernalia, according to CP+B creative director Andrew Keller.

“He had a massive collection of hot rod art and is passionate about it,” Keller said. The ad is a “nice homage to that kind of school of art.” One example of that genre—largely unknown outside of car enthusiasts—was illustrator Ed “Big Daddy” Roth’s “Rat Fink” cartoons of the 1970s showing monsters on hot rods.

The Mini characters were produced by creatives on the campaign—who also included executive creative director Alex Bogusky, co-art director Kat Morris and copywriters Steve O’Connell and Michelle Hirschberg—to reflect the individuality of the brand.

“We wanted to express the fact that every Mini is a unique Mini and reflects the individual owner,” Keller said.