Cam Newton didn't make it to the Super Bowl this year -- but he did make it into a Super Bowl ad where he is demoted to the pee-wee football ranks.
The Carolina Panthers quarterback shows up in a 60-second ad for Buick that the marketer released Tuesday night. The spot continues the "That's a Buick?" marketing theme that plays off misperceptions of the General Motors brand. The setting is a pee-wee football game. "If that's a Buick, then my kid is Cam Newton," one of the player's dad's says as a Buick rolls into the parking lot. Then, of course, his kid transforms into the NFL star.
It's not the first time a Super Bowl ad has transformed an amatuer football player into a celebrity. See the classic 2010 Snickers Betty White ad that showed a quarterback suddenly appear as Abe Vigoda.
Buick's ad also stars supermodel Miranda Kerr.
The ad, which will run in the first quarter, is by Publicis Groupe's EngageM-1, which was formed last year when the Detroit offices of Leo Burnett and DigitasLBi were combined into a single unit to handle the GM account.
It is Buick's second consecutive year advertising in the game. The investment comes as Buick is in the midst of launching seven new models in under 24 months. Buick expanded its buy from its originally planned 30 seconds to 60 seconds.
"Our latest vehicles like the Encore and Cascada belong in the spotlight on a global stage only the Super Bowl can offer," Duncan Aldred, VP of for global Buick sales, service and marketing, said in a statement.