Zambezi Kicks Off Football Season for Autotrader

By Erik Oster 

Los Angeles agency Zambezi launched a new spot for Autotrader to coincide with the start of the NCAA and NFL football seasons entitled “Kick.”

“Kick” follows the agency’s installation and interactive event for the brand in Miami this summer, as well as June’s “Driven by Sport” effort. The new addition to the agency’s “Life is the Filter” campaign  shares an athletic focus with that ad, but in this case tells the story of a father and his daughter/multi-sport athlete. “Kick” opens on the daughter enthusiastically kicking the back of her father’s seat from her spot behind him, as an image of an Autotrader search for a car with more legroom appears onscreen. From there she turns to karate, prompting dad to go for the wagon, soccer and finally football, as dad surprises her with her first car after she kicks a winning filed goal. The spot ends with the tagline “The only car search engine driven by you.” 

“Kick” succeeds thanks to its narrative fluidity, as well as its decision to focus on a father-daughter relationship with a concluding football scene ahead of the new season. The scenes transition well with different sports accompanying different vehicles as the girl grows up from scene to scene, establishing the connection between father and daughter while also emphasizing a connection to the brand. It’s not groundbreaking, adhering to its share of category conventions, but it’s boundary pushing in its own little way and easily the best Autotrader spot we’ve seen from Zambezi.

“Kick” makes its broadcast debut today during CBS’ coverage of SEC football and will also run during the network’s NFL coverage, as well as other major cable outlets, VOD and


Client: Autotrader

Agency: Zambezi
Founder, Chief Executive Officer: Chris Raih
Executive Creative Director: Josh DiMarcantonio
Associate Creative Director: Ben George
Associate Creative Director: Nick Rodgers
Jr. Art Director: Paula Coral
Jr. Copywriter: Erin Meulbroek

Head of Content: Alex Cohn
Producers: Jordan Sider, Andrew Gage
Managing Director: Pete Brown
Account Director: Matt Kline
Account Supervisor: Lauren Bondell
Assistant Account Executive: James Almazan
Project Manager: Courtney Szews
Chief Strategy Officer: Kristina Jenkins
Group Strategy Director: Ryan Richards
Production Intern: Will Stiles

Production Company: Sanctuary
Director: Scott Pickett
Director of Photography: Damian Acevedo
Producer: Christopher Cho
Executive Producer: Preston Lee

Editorial: Blink Studios
Post Producers: Jordan Sider, Katrina Nahikian
Editor: Ling Ly
Assistant Editors: Sasha Perry / Paul Oh

Audio: Lime Studios
Audio Mixer: Zac Fisher
Audio Assistant: Kevin McAlpine

Executive Producer: Susie Boyajan

Color Correction: Company 3
Colorist: Sofie Borup
Producer: Clare Movshon
VFX: Arsenal
Flame Artist: Chris Noellert
Senior Producer: Pravina Sippy
Music: “Check Me Out”
Composer: Little Denise
Music Supervision: Good Ear Music
Music Supervisors: Andrew Kahn & Jackie Shuman