Y&R Brands Ties Jaguar to 7 Deadly Sins

LOS ANGELES A visually oriented campaign by WPP Group’s Young & Rubicam Brands for the Jaguar XJ8L, with creative linked to the seven deadly sins, breaks today, said Jaguar’s vp of marketing.

“We wanted to remind people of what the XJ is all about and build a little interest around the idea of temptation,” said George Ayres, who works at Jaguar’s Irvine, Calif., office. “It’s a sensuous brand, and these commercials tell a siren song about them.”

The 30-second introductory spot and 15-second versions to follow use lush shots of fierce-looking wire grills (wrath), rich features and interiors (envy), and curvaceous lines (lust) with the new tagline, “Can you resist?” All of the commercials were shot and directed by the Cronenweth brothers team, with creative by Jennifer Kaminski (art) and Jesse Lependorf (copy) of Brand Buzz, working under executive creative director Ross Sutherland, Y&R, New York.

Ayres said the campaign would run for eight weeks, principally on news and lifestyle channels, and that a corresponding print component would begin in October magazines.

“In the past two years, we’ve tried to give the brand substance, stressing performance, technology and quality,” said Ayres. “It worked. Now we’re trying to balance the messaging with the priority on style and craftsmanship.”

Ayres added that he regards the work as “a little edgier” than previous “conservative” campaigns.

“Jaguar’s biggest problem in the market is getting consumers to accept it as a premier luxury car, rather than just a pretty car,” said Todd Turner, principal analyst at Car Concepts in Thousand Oaks, Calif. “They have to make it aspirational.”

Jaguar, headquartered in Mahwah, N.J., spent $90 million on advertising in 2003 and $50 million through July, according to Nielsen Monitor-Plus.