Team One to Unveil Lexus Ads

Lexus and its agency, Team One Advertising, will break on Sept. 15 a new campaign for the 1998 LS 400, the luxury automaker’s top-of-the-line model.
The effort introduces performance-oriented product features and repositions the brand with more emotional appeal. Lexus is perceived as distant by some consumers and auto industry analysts.
Two spots and several print ads feature a man painted to resemble the interior of the vehicle. The actor was painted by Joanne Gair, the artist who painted actress Demi Moore for a Vanity Fair cover.
The work is intended to show how the LS 400 driver is attached to the car. The theme: “You’ve never felt this connected to a car.” The spots retain the tagline, “Lexus. The relentless pursuit of perfection.”
“We have a new car from the inside out, and we wanted to make a dramatic and dynamic statement,” said Steve Sturm, marketing manager for the luxury division of Toyota Motor Sales.
“Lexus has been criticized at times for not having enough soul,” said Scott Gilbert, co-chairman and chief executive of El Segundo, Calif.-based Team One. “The most important objective with the ads is to try to communicate the emotional connection between a Lexus driver and his car,” he said.
Previous Lexus ads touted safety and de-emphasized performance.