Ad of the Day: Audi

Drivers ditch BMW, Mercedes, and Lexus right on the highway

Long perceived by many to be the workaday alternative to more luxurious brands like BMW, Mercedes, and Lexus, Audi is now being positioned as the more attractive option. In this new spot called "Car Carrier" from Venables Bell & Partners, those rival brands are explicitly named in the voiceover, which declares that more people than ever are leaving those supposedly higher-end marques in favor of Audi. Although the spot is explicitly for the Audi A4, the model is never mentioned by name. And that's because the creators want to lift the whole brand, not just the perception of the new model. To do so, they keep the message extremely simple and, they hope, more effective. The tactic is to reassure car buyers that going for a new Audi is not a step down, but simply another choice from the same field as BMW and the rest. The "plot" of the commercial is also extremely simple. Drivers, literally midcommute, abandon their vehicles to get inside Audis riding on the back of a car transporter. There are some subtle gags—the determination on the faces of the drivers, an exchanged glance when two guys end up sitting in the same car, one already there reading the paper. But it is the spot's simplicity that makes it powerful. At a glance, the viewer knows the story line and gets the message and will get it every time. It will work just as well in the inevitable 15-second variation. One unresolved plot line: What happened to all the now-driverless cars careening along the freeway? Maybe that will be addressed in a follow-up spot.