Honda shows off ‘wild child alter-ego’ with interactive campaign

Honda is hoping to appeal to both safety-conscious drivers and those looking for a high performance model with an interactive campaign that aims to show off the “wild” side of the brand while reminding consumers of its reputation for safety and reliability.

The film, which launches today (30 October), introduces the new Civic Type R, which the car marque claims is its most extreme and high-performing model. It is pitched as the “wild child” alter-ego of its Civic hatchback, which customers trust for its engineering, technology and reliability.

Created by Wieden+Kennedy, the “Other Side” campaign uses a dual-narrative to tell both sides of the Honda brand’s story. The daytime story, based around the Civic, shows a father picking up his daughter from school and driving her to a surprise party.

The night-time story, by contrast, shows the father’s other side as an undercover cop driving art thieves to a police sting.

TV ads will act as a teaser to the online video, which opens with the daytime version of the ad. However, if viewers push the “R” button on their keyboard the video will switch to the night-time version.

The campaign aims to remind consumers of the other side of the Honda brand and its heritage in racing and innovation. The car marque will provide engines to the McLaren F1 team next year and is set to relaunch its NSX supercar in 2016, a model that will be pitched as a rival to Ferraris.

That comes ahead of a wider revamp of the Honda line-up aimed at boosting sales. In the UK the car marque’s sales have fallen by more than 3% so far this year, compared to a 9% increase in the wider market.

Martin Moll, Honda Europe’s head of marketing, says: “This campaign marks a
very significant time for our brand. The Civic Type R is one of four new car launches for Honda in 2015 and provides a powerful halo-effect for the marque. Just as our products are renowned for being innovative, our communications style will amplify this. By way of example, we are not aware of anyone else creating interactive user content in the same dramatic way, which should give it a very strong appeal.”



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1 Comment

Top tips for holding a perfect pitch

Lucy Tesseras

Pitches continue to create bad blood between marketers and account handlers, with little agreement about why they go wrong, but communication between both could go a long way to solving the issue.


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  1. Jenan Bala 4 Nov 2014

    I remember an older campaign about Honda’s racing heritage “If Honda does not race, there is no Honda”.
    They then decided to withdraw from Formula 1 (even though their developed car that went unbranded completely dominated the next season).

    Now they return to Formula 1, a mainly European market with bigger commitments and have begun to ramp up their racing profile in the consumer market with the new Type R Civic and an NSX project aiming to compete with Ferrari.

    It looks like they want Europe and in two years, they might just take it.

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