Sales-Drivers Wanted at VW

Volkswagen has been looking for a new bolt of energy for its faltering brand, and it may finally be on to something with its first marketing campaign from its new ad agency, Crispin Porter + Bogusky. Four new TV ads for its just-released GTI performance car that broke this week during the Winter Olympics are the most energized and brand-correct ads to come from VW in five years -- back when the German auto maker was setting an ad standard for companies in and out of the automotive category. The ads' theme is "Make Friends With Your Fast," a reference to the "thing" inside drivers that makes them like to go fast and drive high-performance cars. In the ads, as well as the broader marketing campaign, the "fast" is embodied in a strange little character that looks like a cross between Darth Vader and the Tasmanian Devil. It rides with the drivers of the car, and is heard speaking as if it's the driver's conscience.

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