Mar 12

A (kind of) clever Holden Volt ad

 

How do you rectify a public perception problem for electrified cars like the Holden Volt in the land of Oz?

Well, money is often a sure-fire recipe to get people’s attention, and so Holden played candid camera with gas station customers and monitored their reactions to having to pay just $2.50 for a complete fill-up of their various ICE machines.

Holden_Volt_not in the red
 

The catch was Holden then turned around and said, by the way, if you owned a Holden Volt, this is all you’d have to pay for a complete recharge.

Of course, advertising being what it is, this one has the (not mentioned) caveat that $2.50 is only enough to pay for electricity to travel around 40 miles, and the Volt does have a gas tank that can accept quite a bit more money’s worth.


 

The people paying much more expensive gas bills were presumably putting enough petrol in to travel a full 300 or more miles in their cars, so some have said this advertising is borderline deceptive, if not at least misleading.

Just the same, it is a clever gimmick, and did get everyone’s attention given Holden actually footed the balance of the videoed peoples’ bill – less $2.50 – to compensate them for their part in the ad, and so everyone seemed happy, at least as far as we are shown.

Gizmodo

This entry was posted on Tuesday, March 12th, 2013 at 12:00 am and is filed under General. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

COMMENTS: 31


  1. 1
    MrEnergyCzar

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    Mar 12th, 2013 (12:24 am)

    This ad is too good to be shown in the states….. it’s a shame they won’t. Why, I don’t know.

    MrEnergyCzar


  2. 2
    OppChg

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    Mar 12th, 2013 (1:38 am)

    MrEnergyCzar:
    This ad is too good to be shown in the states….. it’s a shame they won’t.Why, I don’t know.

    I agree, Mr. Czar except for the US version, to keep it more realistic and easier to equate gas prices vs electric prices, the customers should be told they will only have to pay *98 cents a gallon* – in otherwords using your own great “miles per dollar” measure in another way:

    Compare the 2 gallons needed to drive a 20 mpg midsize 40 miles vs the Volt’s battery:

    13 kWh charge * 0.15 cents per kWh / 2 = $0.98


  3. 3
    Sean

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    Mar 12th, 2013 (2:49 am)

    Wish Cadid Camera was still a show here in the States and GM could still do something similar but yeah I don’t know why most Americans have to be such numb skulls when it Comes to EV’S, EREV’S, and PHEV’S.

    Also I got some good news for you guys I heard on the radio that the Nissan Leaf has dropped in price but if you don’t like the sound of that I got you even better news my dad also heard as well that he heard earlier that the Volt’s price went down as well too and here are the two cars when it comes to there prices.

    Nissan Leaf: $28,800

    http://www.nissanusa.com/electric-cars/leaf/?next=header.vehicles.postcard.vlp.image

    Chevy Volt: $31,645

    http://www.chevrolet.com/volt-electric-car.html

    Well all I can say is let’s hope these lower price tags get costumers attention only time will tell?

    But yeah I don’t get it either wish they could do this like they did on Plug-In-America but I’m sure they wouldn’t get the Plug-In-America clip at all here it is is you didn’t see it the last time I posted it.

    http://www.pluginamerica.org/why-plug-vehicles


  4. 4
    Sean

     

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    Mar 12th, 2013 (2:53 am)

    Though the price is lower before you click on the vehicle same goes for the volt why not show the correct price before you click on it.

    In my opinion that makes no sense at all.


  5. 5
    Dave

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    Mar 12th, 2013 (4:28 am)

    You need a lot of $2.50′s to pay the ridiculous $US62,000 that Holden charge for the Volt in Australia.


  6. 6
    James

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    Mar 12th, 2013 (5:12 am)

    THE big flaw in this cute ad is the same as the first
    ads GM ran for Volt in the ‘States: THE AD DOESN”T TELL FOLKS HOW THE CAR WORKS! Remember the first Volt ads? They tried “it’ll go farther” – but didn’t explain how/why “…. Then they went cutesy and tried the “…then why are you at a gas station? ” and it still didn’t
    sink in — THEN, worst of all was the Super Bowl ad with aliens lusting
    after a poor Volt owner’s wife in his garage….. FINALLY they just went to basics and
    got it right with “Electric When You Want It, Gas When You Need It” – plus the addition
    of good ole customer testimonial ads on a plain white background – eventually after hundreds
    of millions of ad dollars, GM got it right!

    Same deal for Holden. Anybody who knows anything about Aussies is that
    they love them some big V-8 action – The land of Oz has a deep love affair
    with gas guzzlin’ machines. True, they’re feelin’ the heat of huge gas prices -
    but oil and gas are infused into Aussie auto culture ( See Holden SS and
    the Australian V-8 racing series – Camaros….etc, etc ). These ads show what
    happens when a car company that makes it’s profits on gas cars and trucks
    tries to advertise a new tech auto that makes all their other products look bad.
    Volt just plain does great innovative things their other products can’t. So you
    can’t, from an advertising prospective – brag about 100s of mpgs and no exhaust,
    luxury silent ride , and passing gas stations without stomping on the products
    that pay your bills and put your kids through college. It’s a tough balance.

    This Holden ad has a clever angle, but Holden Volts are selling in the low dozens
    over there with no uptick in sight at their sky-high price ( around $63,000 U.S. ).
    Holden should’ve just copied GM’s latest efforts with Aussie owners and not
    tried to cutesy-it-up reinventing the advertising wheel.

    To this day, even though Volt’s been all over media and on our roads for over
    two years, a surprising number of Americans still don’t know how it works, and
    why it’s better than a BEV or Prius! The Aussies are just getting started climbing
    that information-gap mountain down unda.

    RECHARGE ( your advertising, Holden ) ,

    James

    James


  7. 7
    James McQuaid

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    Mar 12th, 2013 (6:17 am)

    I really like this ad. Its positive vibe appeals to me. The first two years of U.S. television advertisements seem to be on the defense in comparison.

    at their sky-high price ( around $63,000 U.S. )

    The cost of living in Australia, and new cars in particular, is higher than in the U.S. This British expat has a web site on the subject (and encourages Brits to move to Australia nonetheless):
    http://www.bobinoz.com/blog/2617/buying-a-car-in-australia-whatll-it-cost/

    I don’t know why most Americans have to be such numb skulls when it Comes to EV’S, EREV’S, and PHEV’S

    Most of us are not. The voice of the bad guys is magnified by money in politics. For example, although Karl Rove castigated fellow Republican Clint Eastwood for simply doing a Chrysler ad, the ad actually appealed to most Americans.


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    xiaowei1

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    Mar 12th, 2013 (7:11 am)

    many people have readily accepted cars with electric assist in Australia. Actually its quite well accepted. The Volt is the next step, and it makes sense. whilst the add is great, and makes a great point, its the price of the car that is prohibitive. if it cost the same as it did in the US, sales would be better than in the US despite having just a fraction of the population and no subsidies.


  9. 9
    OppChg

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    Mar 12th, 2013 (7:12 am)

    Sean:
    Though the price is lower before you click on the vehicle same goes for the volt why not show the correct price before you click on it.

    In my opinion that makes no sense at all.

    Sean: The $31k price for the Volt is after the tax credit, if you qualify. Chevy has not yet lowered their officially price from $39k, which is probably a good move for them. That said there are some deals to be had that can put you in a Volt for high $20k after tax credit.

    Note that Nissan has their best list price now list as similar, after tax credit, as $21,300, which is great for hopefully spurring more EV sales and leases. But this is the very base model and much less of a vehicle than a base Volt in just about every way except pure EV range and a 5th seat.


  10. 10
    nasaman

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    Mar 12th, 2013 (8:01 am)

    This Holden Volt ad is not only clever —it’s ingenious, brilliant, courageous and thought-provoking!!! GM/USA SHOULD FOLLOW THIS LEAD! Mark Reuss, President of General Motors North America & previous chairman and managing director of Holden, ARE YOU LISTENING?!?!

    PS: Even if irrationally-litigious US interests threatened law suits, the publicity would be invaluable!


  11. 11
    nasaman

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    Mar 12th, 2013 (8:30 am)

    PS: I’ve just emailed a direct link to this incredibly-imaginative ad to both the head of Chevy Volt advertizing & to Mark Reuss at GM


  12. 12
    Malcolm Scott

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    Mar 12th, 2013 (8:33 am)

    James,

    James,

    Holden went through the how it works advertising phase a year ago with this campaign.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mgd69GQh2Cc

    They also had a very clever interactive how it works campaign aligned with the Australian International Motor Show last year.

    If you remove the dealer registered demo cars, Volt sales are not as you would expect for such a good car. The Australian automotive market is booming – never been better. There are lots of $65k cars being sold, but strangely the Volt is not sharing the experience.

    Holden is to be commended for trying something different. I’m not sure that this is even on TV as I’ve not seen it there. 34,000 views of the video in such a short time indicates that it’s getting good recognition. Whether it translates to sales, we can only wait. However, one objective of the Holden Volt advertising might not be primarily for Volt sales. I would think that Holden would be very happy if a lot of Australian made Cruzes were being sold instead/as well.

    - Malcolm


  13. 13
    nasaman

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    Mar 12th, 2013 (8:35 am)

    PPS: I just now received the following email reply from Mark Reuss:

    “Yes. I do listen.

    “Mark Reuss
    “President, GM North America

    “On Mar 12, 2013, at 8:25 AM, “nasaman@earthlink.net” wrote:

    “Hi Cristi -

    “In case you haven’t seen this brilliant ad Holden used recently in Australia, have a look…..

    “http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_Bv1hDjyfyo

    “As I posted on today’s gm-volt.com, “This Holden Volt ad is not only clever —it’s ingenious, brilliant, courageous and thought-provoking!!! GM/USA SHOULD FOLLOW THIS LEAD! Mark Reuss, President of General Motors North America & previous chairman and managing director of Holden, ARE YOU LISTENING?!?!

    “PS: Even if irrationally-litigious US interests threatened law suits, the publicity would be invaluable!”


  14. 14
    George S. Bower

     

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    Mar 12th, 2013 (9:24 am)

    OT
    I can’t get logged into the forum. Well I can sort of. It accepts my user name and password and say thanks for logging in George, then it reverts back to the UN LOGGED IN state and wants me to log in again. So I can never complete the login.

    Plus yesterday all the Avatars were wierd. It went back to an old avatar that I changed weeks ago.

    Anybody else notice these oddities?


  15. 15
    George S. Bower

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    Mar 12th, 2013 (9:26 am)

    See there is the old my old B1 bomber avatar.


  16. 16
    nasaman

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    Mar 12th, 2013 (9:52 am)

    George S. Bower: See there is the old my old B1 bomber avatar.

    Hey George, that’s a GREAT avatar! It’s the bomber and YOU’RE the bomb! :)


  17. 17
    Jackson

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    Mar 12th, 2013 (9:53 am)

    “What if there were a magic gas pump in your garage?”

    Man putting hose into fill pipe. Close-up of dial on pump ticking up to one gallon.

    “That gave you one gallon of gas every day?”

    From behind view of Volt pulling into the garage.

    “Well guess what?”

    Woman gets out, plugs wire into Volt.

    “There is!”

    “Chevy Volt; electric when you want it, gas when you need it.”


  18. 18
    Jackson

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    Mar 12th, 2013 (9:56 am)

    George S. Bower: Anybody else notice these oddities?

    No, unless you count being prompted for Admin login and password after you submit a comment, refresh the page or click “edit” (rendering the feature unusable); disappearing/re-appearing blockquote shading and occasionally seeing normal text in dark green with italics in dark purple.

    Nope, can’t say I have. :-P


  19. 19
    Fotomoto

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    Mar 12th, 2013 (9:58 am)

    To this day, even though Volt’s been all over media and on our roads for over
    two years, a surprising number of Americans still don’t know how it works, and
    why it’s better than a BEV or Prius!

    Many folks still think the Prius has always required a plug.


  20. 20
    George S. Bower

     

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    Mar 12th, 2013 (10:22 am)

    Jackson: No, unless you count being prompted for Admin login and password after you submit a comment, refresh the page or click “edit” (rendering the feature unusable); disappearing/re-appearing blockquote shading and occasionally seeing normal text in dark green with italics in dark purple.

    Nope, can’t say I have.

    Do me a favor and try to login to the Forum.


  21. 21
    Jackson

     

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    Mar 12th, 2013 (10:35 am)

    George S. Bower,

    Logged in, voted in a survey, no problems.


  22. 22
    steve

     

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    Mar 12th, 2013 (12:15 pm)

    I don’t like it. It tells a tiny part of the story. Reminds me of bait and switch tactics. Tell the whole story well and maybe you won’t have to worry about veiwer attention span.


  23. 23
    KNS

     

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    Mar 12th, 2013 (2:24 pm)

    George S. Bower: Do me a favor and try to login to the Forum.

    I have not been having any problem with my forum login.

    KNS


  24. 24
    Mark Brooks

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    Mar 12th, 2013 (4:36 pm)

    OppChg,

    An interesting Ad, but I dont think they really get the message out with this approach. Far better to use your approach or to just use a cost per mile ( in this case 4 cents a mile vs 12 cents).

    In a sure sign that EVs are here to stay, Our local CAA ( Canadian version of AAA ) has even put up a cost estimator on its web site that has a seperate EV page. My costs are 2 cents a km, or $250 a year to cover 15k.

    http://caa.ca/car_costs/

    The times are a changing!


  25. 25
    Frankydude

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    Mar 12th, 2013 (4:37 pm)

    This ad is great as it makes people think about the economics of a new Volt versus a New ICE car.
    The gas price is such that the amount of cash needed to pay the fuel for the life of a ICE vehicle
    exceeds the purchase price of the said ICE vehicle when new.

    With a Volt, you do change this.

    Francois
    B2653


  26. 26
    Noel Park

     

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    Mar 12th, 2013 (5:05 pm)

    Dave:
    You need a lot of $2.50′s to pay the ridiculous $US62,000 that Holden charge for the Volt in Australia.

    #5

    Yeah, that’s really tough. +1

    My hat is off to any Aussie who steps up to buy one in the face of that. They’re great Corvette fans for sure, God love ‘em.


  27. 27
    Noel Park

     

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    Mar 12th, 2013 (5:10 pm)

    Mark Brooks: My costs are 2 cents a km, or $250 a year to cover 15k.

    Mark Brooks: The times are a changing!

    #24
    VERY cool! +1

    Frankydude: With a Volt, you do change this.

    #25

    Same answer! +1

    My hat is also off to any Canadian who steps up to buy one. God love you guys too.


  28. 28
    Eco_Turbo

     

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    Mar 12th, 2013 (9:27 pm)

    I just went to the forum and was already logged in like usual.


  29. 29
    George S. Bower

     

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    Mar 12th, 2013 (10:41 pm)

    Thx eco and Jackson. I think it is because I am on a different computer cuz I am on a trip . I bet when I get back home it will all be fixed.


  30. 30
    steve

     

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    Mar 12th, 2013 (11:03 pm)

    Jackson: “What if there were a magic gas pump in your garage?”

    Man putting hose into fill pipe.Close-up of dial on pump ticking up to one gallon.

    “That gave you one gallon of gas every day?”

    From behind view of Volt pulling into the garage.

    “Well guess what?”

    Woman gets out, plugs wire into Volt.

    “There is!”


    “Chevy Volt; electric when you want it, gas when you need it.”

    I think that could be a better ad.


  31. 31
    Track Bids

     

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    Apr 10th, 2013 (12:02 am)

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