Kia Ads Tout Fuel Efficiency | Adweek Kia Ads Tout Fuel Efficiency | Adweek
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Kia Ads Tout Fuel Efficiency

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DETROIT Kia continues to emphasize the thriftiness of its product line in times of escalating gas and food prices in a new campaign that breaks today.

The automaker will introduce two spots via davidandgoliath, Los Angeles, highlighting its Spectra and Sportage vehicles.

In one clip, the Spectra is shown in front of a gas station and a voiceover says: "Now, more than ever, you want to get the most for your money." Soon, the 32-MPG rating is posted on the screen and the narrator announces that the car is "fuel efficient." Copy also notes that the car is "about $2,000 less than the Corolla XLE" -- one of Spectra's prime competitors.

The Sportage spot cites the small SUV as being priced "about $6,000 less than the Toyota Rav4 Limited. Or to put it another way, a whole year's worth of groceries less."

Kia just completed running TV ads in which drivers pull up to the wrong side of fueling pumps, presumably forgetting where their gas cap is located because they fuel up their Kias so rarely.

The new campaign launches Kia's spring sale. In addition to TV spots, it includes radio and point of purchase, as well as ads on third-party auto Web sites and in 15 major market daily newspapers.

This latest effort is well timed considering the state of the economy, said Tim Chaney, director of marketing at Kia, Fountain Valley, Calif. "It's not all doom and gloom, in fact we believe the opposite," he said. "We are in a good position to leverage our natural equity, and that is quality, fuel economy and a good warranty. People are still shopping for cars, albeit less than before, and we are in a good spot."

Chaney said that rather than cutting back on marketing spending, as many other automakers are doing, Kia would increase its spending by 30 percent this year. The brand spent $215 million last year on ads, per Nielsen Monitor-Plus.

"We are going to have the heaviest TV weight that we've had in over a year," said Chaney. More experiential and event marketing is also planned. The brand will introduce a crossover called the Borrego this summer, which will be backed by heavy marketing like a ride-and-drive tour that begins in May.