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Friday, January 25, 2008

Audi's Super Bowl ad Details

Details are beginning to emerge about the Audi R8 Super Bowl ad set for February 3rd. The occassion, which could have cost Audi as much as $6 million for the airtime alone, is being marketed by a new web site promoting the debut. The commercial is also being speculated as a potential debut for the Audi R8 Spyder, but there has been no confirmation of that from Audi.

Audi has produced a 60-second commercial featuring Alex Rocco, the actor who played Moe Greene in The Godfather. Styled like the film, the spot will likely immitate the scene where Michael Corleone tries to buy out an indignant Greene's stake in a Las Vegas casino.

According to Audi's press release, they "selected The Godfather as a thematic foundation for its Super Bowl ad because the film expresses the idea of a new power rising in an established hierarchy."

The character of Moe Greene was shot through the eye while receiving a massage during a legendary scene in the Oscar-winning film.

Published reports state that the Audi ad will air during the first quarter of the Super Bowl. By signing up on the Audi of America site dedicated to the ad, users will have a chance to see the commercial before it airs, likely at 10:18pm Greenwich Mean Time on February 3rd. This is more than an hour before the game is scheduled to begin.

Audi's decision to air the advert is not so much to sell the R8, but to further position the automaker as a top luxury vehicle producer.

Depending on who you ask, last year's Super Bowl was watched by anywhere between 93 and 145 million people, 97.9% of which were in North America. However, if you are not from the States, you might be unaware that there are two stories U.S. media heavily report around America's football championship: the game itself, and the advertisements shown during the game.

This year's Super Bowl is being broadcast on Fox, which means that when U.S. viewers are not being bombarded by promos for Fox programming, they will see 30 minutes of new television spots. The advertisers dream is for one of their commercials to be endlessly repeated on news reports across the States, with the spot becoming the focus of water-cooler conversation long after the game is finished. 24 years later, people still talk about the 1984 Apple Macintosh commercial that aired nationally for the first (and only) time during the Big Game in '84.

That is why 30 seconds of advertising during the 2008 Super Bowl will cost as much as $3 million. It is a calculated risk made by companies trying to milk as much aftermath publicity and word-of-mouth as possible.

And in Audi's case, to hopefully ascend to the height of supremacy over all luxury automakers.

Press Release

22 January 2008


AUBURN HILLS, Mich., January 22, 2008 – Audi of America Inc. will boldly declare its intention to redefine luxury in the automotive segment with its first Super Bowl ad in nearly 20 years, the company said today. The 60-second ad, which was inspired by the Oscar-winning film “The Godfather,” is critical to connecting with luxury vehicle customers. In addition to the creative content associated with the epic film, the ad features prominent placement of the Audi R8, the brand’s first mid-engine sports car.

Audi’s return to the Super Bowl was preceded by a record year for sales in the United States. The automaker sold 93,506 vehicles in the US in 2007, a 3.8% increase over the previous year. Audi selected “The Godfather” as a thematic foundation for its Super Bowl ad because the film expresses the idea of a new power rising in an established hierarchy.

"With record sales in 2007 and the launch of a host of new products in 2008, the Audi brand is at the single most exciting point in its history,” said Scott Keogh, chief marketing officer, Audi of America. “We chose ‘The Godfather’ to anchor our Super Bowl ad because, at its core, the film is about a struggle between old and new power. In precisely that fashion, Audi represents the rise of a new force in luxury.”

Audi’s advertising agency, Venables Bell & Partners created the ad, which was shot on location at the Fleur de Lys house in Los Angeles. The 60-second spot will air only twice on television. The debut will come in the first quarter of the Super Bowl, while a 30-second version will air the following day.

Actor Alex Rocco, who portrayed the character of Moe Greene in the first “Godfather,” will be starring in the ad. Audi last advertised during the Super Bowl in 1991.

On the day of the game, Audi guests who have previously opted-in on will have the opportunity to view the spot early on a separate, dedicated web site. That web site will also host additional footage from the filming and production of the ad.

Audi will support their Super Bowl ad with an on-the-ground presence in the game’s host city of Phoenix, AZ. Audi is creating a temporary installation of the Audi Forum, which currently exists in many of the world’s major cities, including London, Tokyo, Singapore and New York. The Audi Forum Phoenix will be a haven for VIP and celebrity guests, incorporating tailored programming and experiences throughout the week.

About Audi of America

Audi of America, Inc. offers a line of luxury vehicles that include the Audi A3 sport compact; the sporty A4 sedan, Avant and Cabriolet models; the high performance S4 sedan, Avant and Cabriolet models; the high-revving RS 4 sports sedan and Cabriolet; the all new S5 Coupe with 354 hp; the design-leading A6 sedan and Avant; the V-10 powered high performance S6 sedan; the Audi Q7 performance SUV; the new all-aluminum Audi A8 and A8L; the new S8 with V10 power; the all-new 2008 TT Coupe and Roadster models; and the all-new, all-aluminum R8, one of the most exclusive mid-engine sports cars in the world. For more information, please visit

Related entries:

Audi R8 in Depth


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