Nike’s Latest Ad Vehicle Comes Armor Plated

LOS ANGELES “Holy Crap!” indeed.

Hub Strategy’s first assignment for the Nike 6.0 Extreme Sports Group led to the creation of an action-sports urban assault vehicle — actually a converted 1959 amphibious tank-like truck — initially tricked out by the agency for the Mountain Dew’s Action Sports Tour.

The vehicle has proven popular and will now visit various cities over the next several months.

The brief for the project was, in fact, “Holy Crap!” — defined by the client as creating a presence impossible to ignore and sure to create a camera-phone viral response, said Andrea Collette, the San Francisco shop’s communications director.

Nat Kidder and Dan Phillips developed the basic concept, working with cd D.J. O’Neil and a team under design director Peter Judd. The vehicle was chosen from among 20 Hub ideas.

The team needed to convert an actual urban-assault vehicle to achieve heightened realism.

The tight production schedule meant very quickly assembling what Collette called “an unorthodox team including an architect, strategic planners, industrial and graphics designers and a copywriter.” The assault vehicle was completed in just two weeks.

Vehicle features include a skate ramp, wakeboard tower, surf racks, skateboard rails and BMX racks — as well as creature comforts such as a barbecue, sleep-in camper shell, a waterproof CD player, radio and remote control iPod.

She declined to disclose Nike’s spending on the assignment.