Rolling Stones to Hawk Ford Vehicles

Car Marketer Licenses Song 'Start Me Up' for TV Ads

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DETROIT (AdAge.com) -- Ford Motor Co.'s Ford Division has licensed the Rolling Stones' 1981 song, "Start Me Up," for use in commercials for its 2003 models. The work bows just after the New Year on NBC's "The Tonight Show With Jay Leno."

Photo: AP
Mick Jagger and the Rolling Stones will be rocking for Ford.

"Start Me Up" debuted in 1981 on the Stones' "Tattoo You" album and is also featured on the band's latest CD, "Forty Licks."

Seven versions
Ford said the spot will get heavy play during the first two weeks of January during broadcasts of every major college football game, NFL playoffs and prime time programs. Six other versions of the ad are planned to air regionally.

The executions from WPP Group's J. Walter Thompson, Detroit, replace the "No Boundaries" ad theme.

With the new creative, Ford becomes the latest automaker to use popular musical artists in advertising. General Motors Corp.'s Cadillac has been using Led Zeppelin's "Rock N' Roll" for a year. Chrysler Group's Dodge brand used Aerosmith and Chrysler brand is readying ads with Celine Dion. Toyota Motor Sales USA has a co-marketing deal with Phil Collins.

Too much like radio?
One marketing manager from a car brand that doesn't use rock legends in its ads said "it's like listening to the radio" when consumers see so many auto commercials with popular music on TV.

Here are the full lyrics to the Stone's tune:

If you start me up
If you start me up I'll never stop
If you start me up
If you start me up I'll never stop
I've been running hot
You got me ticking gonna blow my top
If you start me up
If you start me up I'll never stop
You make a grown man cry
Spread out the oil, the gasoline
I walk smooth, ride in a mean, mean machine
Start it up
If you start it up
Kick on the starter give it all you got, you got, you got
I can't compete with the riders in the other heats
If you rough it up
If you like it you can slide it up, slide it up
Don't make a grown man cry
My eyes dilate, my lips go green
My hands are greasy
She's a mean, mean machine
Start it up
If start me up
Give it all you got
You got to never, never, never stop
Never, never
Slide it up
You make a grown man cry
Ride like the wind at double speed
I'll take you places that you've never, never seen
Start it up
Love the day when we will never stop, never stop
Never stop, never stop
Tough me up
Never stop, never stop, never stop
You, you, you make a grown man cry
You, you make a dead man cum
You, you make a dead man cum

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