When Ford says that Spanish-language musician Juanes will be the "voice and face" of its new Sync in-car product, don't expect some sort of awesome "Knight Rider" situation where the Colombian sings directions to you as you drive.
In upcoming spots and in-person appearances, the performer of "A Dios le Pido" will promote the in-car device to the Hispanic market. Co-developed with Microsoft, Sync allows one to control his or her mp3 player and cell phone by voice, eliminating some of Generation Y's major distractions while on the road. And yes, it supports iPods as well as Zunes.
Ford will repay the favor by sponsoring Juanes' new album, "La Vida... Es Un Ratico" (October 23), as well as signing on as the "exclusive automotive sponsor" of his supporting tour this fall.
I just hope that Juanes' spots turn out nothing like the promotional video on the Sync site. Click "Should we be there at 8?" and listen as a computerized woman's voice is kind enough to read a man's love texts to him: "You're great. Wish you were here. Hugs and kisses." It's frightening and leads one to think that if Ford/Microsoft wanted true product integration, that "Knight Rider" idea might not have been such a bad one.