The worst ad on telly?

  02 September 2012

What’s the worst car advert on TV at the moment? For my money it has to be for the Peugeot 208 – where you don’t even know it’s a car commercial for 75% of the time and then the fat, naked bloke turns up and the two guys drive off together.

Perhaps the French think it’s ‘edgy’ but, personally, I can think of nothing worse than buying a car that may have been driven around by a bloke in his underpants who, quite likely, has a deodorant issue. The Guardian dubbed him ‘the Peugeot Pervert’.

I don’t know for certain but I suspect it’s a pan-European campaign (certainly I’ve seen both left and right-hand drive versions) which means it’s been created to appeal across the Continent while, at the same time, not upsetting anyone. Plainly it failed with me – and I used to work for Peugeot!

Of course pan-European advertising campaigns are not new. They tend to be driven by cost-effectiveness rather than market-effectiveness and most NSCs would admit privately they’d rather control and make their own ads, rather than rely on a European agency. They just don’t get the chance.

But TV ads need not be expensive and they can be market targeted. Take the recent 30-second commercial for the new SsangYong Korando. It was made here and is very UK price-specific. Okay, it may not have the production values of the Peugeot film but it presents a clear message about the product and has been highly effective.

Steve Gray, former marketing boss at Chrysler-Jeep and now with SsangYong, says it has driven website hits from around 200 a day to over 5,500 a day – most of them going straight to the ‘compare’ link from the ad.

And the best bit is the price: £35,000 for a day in the studio, the actor and the post production. Which leaves plenty of budget over to buy lots of airtime.

Now, don’t even get me started on the new Volvo V40 ……

Rupert Saunders

What’s the worst car ad on TV? Join our LinkedIn group and vote for your least favourite.

In case you’ve not seen the Peugeot ad you can see it on YouTube here.


And the SskangYong Korando ad is here.



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