Land Rover Sends Film Crews To Real Natural Disasters To Shoot Their Cars As "Hero Cars"

Reader Mars tips us off to this Brandweek article about Land Rover’s soon to be launched commercial campaign where Land Rover sends film crews to the sites of actual natural disasters while they are in progress to get footage of the Land Rovers “in action” as “hero cars.”

The article is written for Brandweek’s audience of marketers and ad execs, and the effect is slightly sickening.

From Brandweek:

…director Scott Duncan is helming the work. When a natural disaster strikes, he and his crew go on location to capture footage. For example, when floods hit Levasy, Mo., last month, Duncan’s crew swooped in like a SWAT team to film the LR3 in action.

Turpin said the first spot, breaking next week, would show the LR3 using its hydraulic lift and sealed undercarriage to navigate flooded streets strewn with disabled cars.

“Our strategic insight came from planning,” said Turpin, who joined the agency in September after working on Toyota at Publicis Groupe’s Saatchi & Saatchi. “Land Rovers are designed way beyond the margins of normal, to conquer any terrain on Earth.”

Turpin wants the new campaign to appeal to old-school Discovery drivers as well as to soccer moms who want to know that their SUV is more than a glorified grocery wagon.

Here’s the best part. The footage will be used in commercials that feature the following cool slogans:

“The odds of your neighborhood getting more rain than the Amazon: 270 to 1. The LR3. Created for the one.”

“The odds a billion gallons of water will run through your neighborhood: 25 to 1. The LR3. Created for the one.”

A spokesperson for the ad agency said, “When it snows big time, we’ll go out and do that. And when hurricane season starts, we’ll go there,” he said.

Another agency rep:

“This adds emotional value to the LR3’s purpose-built design character,” said Rick Eiserman, North American managing partner, Y&R, Irvine, Calif. “Building off the halo of major news stories, [the productions] will lead to community and humanitarian support, increasing LR3’s relevance on a brand, social and community level.”

In order to “ensure that the brand isn’t seen as exploiting disaster,” Land Rover will make donations to relief organizations. Ugh! That’s messed up! We don’t even know what to say about how messed up that is. —MEGHANN MARCO

Land Rover Literally Gets Into the Action [Brandweek via Autoblog] (Thanks, Mars!)