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Commercial Spotlight: VW Rabbit "Multiply"

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Volkswagen Rabbit's

Volkswagen Rabbit's "Multiply"

Image Copyright: Volkswagen

The Company:

The Agency:

The Pitch:


Volkswagen's relaunch of the Rabbit, the name that hasn't been used in over 20 years.

Commercial Debut:


June 27, 2006

Target Audience:


Volkswagen's looking to the younger demographic, changing the Golf back into the Rabbit. The VW marketing team says its car owners want a relationship with their vehicle and they say the Rabbit moniker will give them the relationship the Golf never did.

The Setup:


Rabbits are multiplying and taking over the city, playing about town together and growing in numbers at the same time.

The Commercial:


A white Rabbit and a black Rabbit frolic around the city, eventually going into a tunnel. They come out of the tunnel with even more Rabbits. Most are gray Rabbits and one is a mix of black and white.

Pretty soon Rabbits are everywhere multiplying. The Rabbits still frolic, continuing to grow in large numbers and they even get chased by some dogs.

Pros:


• A perfect way to relaunch the Rabbit. Creatively captures your attention and plays on the well-known idea of how fast rabbits breed.

• Beautiful cinematography. The shots are very clever, required tons of car choreography and are a great job by director Nicolai Fuglsig of MJZ.

• Buzz across the Internet began the night the commercial first aired. The ad and even pictures from the shoot have popped up across the Internet, giving the Rabbit even more exposure.

Cons:


• If you didn't know the Rabbit was coming back, you might not get the commercial until the very end when you see the Rabbit symbol and then a font that reads, "It's back @ $14,990." But by then you're anxious to see the ad again.

• Some ad and auto industry execs criticize Crispin Porter + Bogusky's work for VW, including the controversial crash commercials.

• Some of these same critics say bringing back the Rabbit name is a huge mistake and could be the death of the VW brand in the U.S.

News and Notes:


• Crispin Porter + Bogusky took over VW's advertising in December 2005. The ad agency met with VW of America in March 2006 to suggest VW bring back the Rabbit name.

• Within weeks of the Rabbit name approval, new signs, photos and press releases were rushed to the 2006 New York International Auto Show in April to debut the Golf redesign as the Rabbit.

• Crispin Porter + Bogusky resigned from handling BMW's Mini Cooper brand in September 2005 to take on the $400 million VW account.

• "Multiply" director Nicolai Fuglsig has also directed commercials for Adidas, Audi and Sony and has a knack for creating ads that don't tell you what they're advertising until the end of the spot.

• The song used in "Multiply" is titled, "The Birds and the Bees," by Patrick and Eugene from the album, "Postcard from Summerisle."

• The Rabbit was the first Volkswagen manufactured in the U.S.

• The Rabbit had more than 1.3 million sales in the 10 years it was originally produced.

• VW launched the Rabbit in 1974 and changed the name to the Golf in 1985.

• The Rabbit has always been known as the Golf in other countries. Only the U.S. and Canada have ever known the Rabbit name.

• Volkswagen America spent $337 million in advertising in 2005.

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