Rockin' in the Front Seat

Bands Play Key Role in New Mitsubishi Ads

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DETROIT (AdAge.com) -- Mitsubishi Motor Sales America will use music as a major theme for its 2001-model year advertising, which breaks March 19 on national broadcast, cable and syndicated cable TV.

In the first execution from Interpublic Group of Co.'s Deutsch, Los Angeles, a montage of people inside the Eclipse coupe are mouthing the words and bopping to the Wiseguys' dance track "Start the Commotion."

Steve Gough, advertising director at the carmaker, told AdAge.com that upcoming commercials feature a different band for each vehicle. The Montero Sport sport utility vehicle, for example, gets '70s glam-rock band T-Rex, while the Montero SUV gets the New Radicals.

'Mr. Roboto'
The Eclipse commercial is reminiscent of a Volkswagen of America commercial from Havas Advertising's Arnold Worldwide, Boston, in which a young man inside a VW is singing and hand-jiving to the song "Mr. Roboto."

Pierre Gagnon, executive vice president-chief operating officer of Cypress, Calif.-based Mitsubishi, told AdAge.com that the marketer will spend about the same in advertising this year as in 2000, although more dollars would be given to regional dealer ad groups.

Mitsubishi spent $251 million in measured media last year, according to Competitive Media Reporting.

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