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Published on May 18th, 2014 | by Zachary Shahan

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BMW Does It! BMW i8 Commercial Shows What An Electric Car Commercial Should Be

May 18th, 2014 by  


As many of you know, I’m not a fan of how electric cars have historically been advertised. My favorites to date are probably a 2013 Chevy Spark EV commercial, Nissan & Renault’s “Gas Powered Everything” commercial, and BMW’s Olympics commercials for the BMW i3 and i8. But most commercials for electric vehicles are boring, uninteresting, and downright crappy. BMW is now showing that its Olympics commercials weren’t a blip. Its new BMW i8 commercial absolutely rocks it. This is what electric car commercials need to be.

Why do I love this commercial so much? It makes the i8 look hot, sexy, totally awesome, badass but “good,” epic, cool… desirable!

Furthermore, it’s human. When I give speeches about how to become a popular, effective blogger, I focus a lot on the importance of being personal and making a human connection with your audience. BMW just made the i8 human, and a totally awesome human that resembles James Bond, Indiana Jones, or Ethan Hunt.

All of this is not always what sells, but this is often what sells, or at least what plants that first (important) desire in the heart of the consumer. And once you’ve got one potential buyer emotionally hooked, she or he can then find out about the excellent practical benefits of the car… and pass on that info on to the more practically minded partner of theirs that might not have been pulled in by the commercial.


Will it work for everyone? No. But it will work for many (especially when it’s used for an affordable electric car not a $136,000 sports car).

And as much as many of us like to think that we aren’t swayed by advertising and overt efforts to manipulate our emotions and desires, we are often subtly influenced by such things.

I’ll admit it that this single, 1-minute ad from BMW makes me more interested in buying a BMW. This commercial strongly reinforces my opinion that BMW is serious about electric cars. This commercial tells me that BMW gets it. The commercial tells me that BMW wants to create and sell awesome electric cars. Maybe it was just the advertising team that got it, but I am inclined to believe it goes deeper, especially with other knowledge about the company.

Does BMW get it as much as Tesla? No, of course not. But if I were in the market for an electric car cheaper than the Model S but more expensive and decked out than the Nissan LEAF, there’s only one option that comes to mind.

It will be interesting to see if BMW retains its leadership in both the production as well as the advertising of electric cars.

Check out many more electric car commercials here: 28 Electrified Vehicles, 47 Electrified Vehicle Videos (Commercials, Reviews, Etc.)

h/t Gas2


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About the Author

Zach is tryin' to help society help itself (and other species). He spends most of his time here on CleanTechnica as its director and chief editor. He's also the president of Important Media and the director/founder of EV Obsession and Solar Love. Zach is recognized globally as an electric vehicle, solar energy, and energy storage expert. He has presented about cleantech at conferences in India, the UAE, Ukraine, Poland, Germany, the Netherlands, the USA, and Canada. Zach has long-term investments in TSLA, FSLR, SPWR, SEDG, & ABB — after years of covering solar and EVs, he simply has a lot of faith in these particular companies and feels like they are good cleantech companies to invest in. But he offers no professional investment advice and would rather not be responsible for you losing money, so don't jump to conclusions.



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