Goodby, Silverstein & Partners Bows First Work for GM's Chevy

Jeff Goodby Explains Idea Behind TV Spot for 2011 Corvette

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NEW YORK ( -- The first work from Goodby, Silverstein & Partners' new client, General Motors' Chevrolet, is out, and it's a testosterone-filled, 45-second TV spot for the 2011 Corvette.

The ad, which aired for the first time last night on ESPN, marks GM's return to TV advertising for the Corvette brand after a five-year absence.

Titled "Still Building Rockets," the commercial shows footage of rocket scientists juxtaposed with snapshots of GM plant workers building a Corvette. A voice-over says: "While time has marched on and priorities have changed, it's nice to know America still builds rockets," right before cutting to a white Corvette whipping through country roads. The ad closes by saying, "The 2011 Corvette, only from Chevrolet" (in line with the automaker's new rule about how to refer to the brand, although viewers are directed to visit

"There's been a love affair with the Corvette that goes back to the '50s, and we want to regenerate that and reconnect people with the handmade nature of the car," Jeff Goodby, co-founder and co-chairman of San Francisco-based Goodby told Ad Age. At the same time, the agency wanted to highlight the car's "terrifically powerful" engine. "We make such things here in America, and that's great."

The release of the spot was timed with an announcement by the car maker yesterday of a unique program: Buyers who order a 2011 Corvette can opt to enter an engine-building program that allows them to assemble the engine of their own car, and watch as their vehicle is built and rolls off the assembly line in Bowling Green, Ky.

"That's in keeping with the way sports cars in Europe treat their customers, that you can get that intimate with the car," Mr. Goodby noted.

Considering the Omnicom Group-owned agency was tapped by GM's new head marketer Joel Ewanick less than two months ago, they were able to shoot, edit and get the Corvette spot out the door pretty quickly. However, a big brand campaign for Chevy brand vehicles isn't expected till the fall.

What do you think of Goodby's first spot for the Corvette? Tell us in the comments below.

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