RPA Revs Honda’s Engines

LOS ANGELES Independent RPA broke a campaign for Honda over the weekend on ESPN’s SportsCenter and in USA Today to trumpet the start of the IndyCar racing season.

A spot that broke Friday (“Starting Up”) opens with a garage door lifting to reveal a Honda racing car. A montage follows of various Honda vehicles such as Formula One cars, motorbikes, outboard motors and even the non-racing Element, all seen switching on their headlights and revving their engines.

Title cards reading “The power of dreams” interrupt the final shots of tachometers popping and the vehicles ready to roar off.

“We think there is a lot of drama in not seeing the movement, which is typical in racing ads, but the race preparation,” said Jim Real, creative director.

“This is the second year that Honda has been the sole engine supplier in the IndyCar series, so it runs a little counter to their competitive spirit,” Real said. “And [Honda] wanted to expand it. We saw it as a celebration of ‘The power of dreams’ tagline.”

The headline on one print ad, which incorporates racing imagery, is: “Ladies and gentlemen, start your Honda engines.” Danica Patrick is one of the drivers pictured in the ad.

Another pullout print piece that ran in USA Today last week has “Looks like your weekend plans are set until September” as a headline and includes the IndyCar season schedule. Other ads are scheduled to run later in various publications, including auto enthusiasts magazines, through September.

RPA’s creative team in Santa Monica, Calif., included Real (copy) and Rich Pass (art) working under creative directors Joe Baratelli and David Smith. Jeff Zwart of @radical.media directed the spot.

American Honda Motors is based in Torrance, Calif.