The Most Memorable Car Ads – Elliot’s Choice

Aston Martin Vantage Roadster Main


I’ll openly admit I changed my mind dozens of times before finishing this article. I love cars, and I love marketing, therefore I’m constantly watching old ads on Youtube and analysing my favourite print campaigns in search for inspiration and entertainment.

I could have chosen Mercedes’ 2012 ‘The Decision’, featuring Michael Schumacher, Nico Rosberg and a very heavily pregnant lady. I very nearly chose Porsche’s show stopping Superbowl ad ‘The Heist’, both of which would have been worthy of my all time favourite ad. However when jotting down some ads that have stuck in my mind over the years, there’s one that always tops the list.

“Thank you, Dieter Zetsche, for so many years of inspiring competition.”

A stroke of pure genius from BMW, creating one of the most heartwarming yet mischievous 60 second clips ever. After 13 years as a Chairman of the Board of Management of Daimler AG and Head of Mercedes-Benz Cars, Dieter Zetsche decided to retire. To congratulate him on his retirement, one of the biggest rivals of Mercedes, none other than BMW decided to create what they imagined his last day at work would be like.

The ad is immediately captivating, emotional music transcends you into the moment, where Zetsche is applauded as he leaves the Mercedes HQ and is driven home, naturally in a brand new S-Class. To anyone watching this for the first time, this is a Mercedes advert. Production wise, it is almost identical to some of their previous ads, using similar colour palettes and camera angles.

But the real pay-off is when Zetsche arrives home, waves goodbye to his chauffeur for the very last time, the screen dips to black to reveal a garage door opening where we see a glimpse of a gorgeous Mercedes Ponton tucked away. But what emerges from the gap next to it? Dr Z blasts out in a BMW i8 Roadster!

As a fan of both brands and cars in general, it’s wonderful to see two of the largest manufacturers in the industry enjoy the moment both tastefully and respectfully, as Zetsche drives off into the distance in the i8, viewers are welcomed to see a statement from BMW, thanking them for years of competition.

It’s a real heart-warmer, face-smirker and goosebump provider this ad!

Dave DibbleThe Most Memorable Car Ads – Elliot’s Choice