CHICAGO - The launch of Chrysler's PT Cruiser is being supported by six television advertisements that portray the car as indefinable.
'The PT Cruiser is different from what you might think of as a typical Chrysler model,' said Jay Kuhnie, director of Chrysler-Plymouth Communications. 'It's very important to us. It has a more youthful feel and attitude.'
The advertisements were created by FCB Worldwide, a unit of Chicago-based True North Communications Inc. FCB Worldwide is headquartered in Southfield, Michigan, USA.
The campaign is the culmination of a 14-month direct marketing and e-mail effort for the PT Cruiser designed to create interest in the retro-styled minivan.
Chrysler says the vehicle defies classification and calls it a 'segment buster.'
Company officials declined to comment on advertising spending, but the US media push alone is estimated to be worth $50 million.
Of the six television spots, three focus on the PT Cruiser's unique design. In one, called 'Stroller,' a little girl calls out the names of various objects as she and her mother stroll past: 'Airplane, bike, bus.'
Confused by the PT Cruiser, the little girl points and says, 'What the...?'
The spot ends with the tagline, 'The Chrysler PT Cruiser. You've never seen anything like it.'
Two spots use different themes to deliver the same punch. In one, a wealthy man who is about to die tries to bargain with the devil for a reprieve. He offers a number of luxuries in vain, but finally tempts the devil with the keys to his PT Cruiser. Similarly, a rotating billboard brings traffic to a halt every time a picture of the PT Cruiser appears.
Three additional advertisements illustrate the car's flexible interior. In one, an inspector checks the quality of several Swiss army knives as they roll down the assembly line. When a PT Cruiser appears on the line, he gives it a similar inspection, checking the folding seats, a shelf and other convenience features.
The spot ends with the tagline, 'Presenting the extremely versatile PT Cruiser.'
The commercials will debut in the USA on April 22 during the broadcast of the Greater Greensboro Chrysler Classic Golf tournament on the CBS network.
According to Chrysler, the campaign was designed to have a global appeal, with an emotional rather than rational pitch. Advertisements in Europe will start in May and June.