Product Placement on Showtime’s Weeds
The benefits of quiet electric driving, and hands-free driving, were promoted in a product placement of the Prius in Weeds, the dark comedy on Showtime. (Warning: This ad, which has profanity, also promotes the stereotype of the African-American urban gangsta.)
4Guzzle-Free Toyota Prius
The Prius driver in this ad is the only sane person in a surreal American landscape of excess.
Goofball Puerto Rican Prius Commercial
In this award-winning Prius ad—part of Toyota Puerto Rico’s “Maneja Confiado” (Drive Confidently) campaign—the fuel gauge needle goes on a world-wide search for the “E” for empty mark. Goofy but fun.
In another award-winning ad—more of a short film at two-and-a-half minutes—ad firm Saatchi & Saatchi in Sydney, Australia, sets the story to the 1920s hobo song, “Big Rock Candy Mountain.” A down and out man takes a hapless journey from one outdated mode of transportation to the next.
In a gorgeous futuristic world, an alien robot descends from outer space with a super high-tech brief case that turns into—you guessed it—a flying Toyota Prius. Very cool animation.
And These Print Ads…
“At Least He Drives A Prius”
Mock print ads from New York-based Art director David Krulik dispel any notion that the legions of hybrid owners—now numbering more than one million—are a monolithic group of do-gooders. Or that an individual hybrid driver can be excused for any crime (or act of self-righteousness) simply because he or she drives a vehicle that gets 45 miles to the gallon. Other images in the series depict a Prius driver soliciting a prostitute and a suburban Prius driver in a romantic embrace with his neighbor’s wife.
9Killing Animals for Oil
This June 2008 Prius campaign, created by Garnier BBDO, San José, Costa Rica, makes a stark point with the lynching of various dead animals, strung up from an oil well: Draining fuel from the earth is like taking life away. At least, that’s the concept.
Prius Ads That Grow
Rather than printing up a glossy brochure, Toyota gave away thousands of paper cards at the 2009 Detroit Auto Show, where the company unveiled the 2010 Prius. Each card had wildflower seeds embedded in them, with instructions on back for planting and watering.