Wednesday, June 20, 2007

A new world for Saturn.

Saturn, a division of GM, that was not long ago left for dead, is doing some smart work again. After a couple of years of successfully (and perhaps inexplicably) getting bad work out of Goodby, Saturn switched their business to Deutsch LA where, to be candid, I thought Saturn would get more of the same.

Instead, they got an idea that makes sense and, I think, will get Americans to start considering Saturn again, unless of course, Saturn is already too far gone as a brand. The idea is they've put a Camry and an Accord in each Saturn showroom, then throw down the gauntlet. Smart and convincing. Not just braggadocio like Ford's work where they compare their Edge to the BMW X5. Please.

In addition to some pretty good spots, Saturn's site is strong with both peer and third-part endorsements. It doesn't feel like a load of solipsistic ad-speak. It feels honest, human and confident. Qualities that have been absent from Detroit's advertising for the entirety of my lifetime. (The only bit I despise is the Rethink American crap. This isn't about America. This is about getting a decent car for the money. Stop trying to make me feel as if I'm unpatriotic because I want a car that works.)

Now, a word about Cannes and other award shows. This work will not win awards. It doesn't have the glitz, the contemporariness, the "new-ness." It's just smart and compelling and I think motivating. Why aren't there awards for that?