Many often joke about Tesla CEO Elon Musk starting his own fragrance, but Ford actually did this. Well, the automaker did something similar. It created an air freshener for its Mustang Mach-E GT that is a high-end fragrance “designed to please the nose of any wearer.”
The automaker held a survey and found that one in five drivers would miss the smell of gasoline most of all if making the switch to an EV. No, this is not a joke, and it is not April 1. In fact, a total of 70% of respondents indicated that they’d miss the smell of gasoline. Gasoline also ranked as a more popular scent than wine and cheese, and ranked similarly to the smell of new books. (Again, not a joke and not a prank.)
Ford wants to encourage its customers to make the switch to electric and is hoping to sway those reluctant via their sense of smell. The company noted that the new Mach-Eau aims to please the nose of any wearer, and the fragrance “fuses smoky accords, aspects of rubber, and even an ‘animal’ element to give a nod to the Mustang heritage.”
“Judging by our survey findings, the sensory appeal of petrol cars is still something drivers are reluctant to give up,” Jay Ward, Director of Ford of Europe Product Communications, shared. “The Mach Eau fragrance is designed to give them a hint of that fuel-fragrance they still crave. It should linger long enough for the GT’s performance to make any other doubts vaporize too.”
Ford unveiled the new fragrance over the weekend at the Goodwood Festival of Speed. The scent isn’t available to buy just yet, but Ford plans to use it to help dispel myths around EVs and convince traditional car enthusiasts of the potential of EVs.
Ford noted that its new fragrance was created by Olfiction under the expertise of Pia Long, an Associate Perfumer in the British Society of Perfumers. Long has created fragrances for some of the most famous perfume brands, and Ford stated that she was instrumental in the Mach-Eau’s inception.
Honestly, this is pretty creative. As someone who is a member of the Tesla community and very active there, I see the Elon Musk-related cologne jokes pretty often. Many wonder if he will ever create a fragrance. However, Ford decided to do just this. It’s pretty funny and many may scoff or scratch their heads, but I’m going to dive into just how important this is.
The Texas School for the Blind and Visually Impaired shared just how important the sense of smell is. As with the sense of taste, the sense of smell is a chemical sense due to detecting chemicals in the environment. The article dives into the science of this sense and points out that it’s 10,000 times more sensitive than any of our other senses. At the beginning of the article, the author described a moment where the sense of smell took her back to a memory of her childhood.
She was shopping when she smelled something familiar. She thought of her childhood doll for the first time in many years — a doll she had when she lived in Spain. Glancing around, she realized that she was in the toy section and near the doll’s area. She picked one up at random and the box said that it was made in Spain.
By creating a gasoline-scented cologne, Ford is appealing to a very specific set of customers — people who love the smell of gasoline and would not switch to EVs due to that love. Now, this group may be smaller or larger than we think, but this isn’t Tesla’s or any other EV-only manufacturer’s target market.
Tesla’s mission is to accelerate the transition to sustainability. That market is filled with people who care about the planet and many probably do not like the smell of gasoline. I sure don’t. However, Ford saw an opportunity to convince a portion of the market to make the switch to EVs — and is using the sense of smell to do this. Laugh if you want to — I admit, I did. But the sense of smell is how we emotionally connect to different moments in our lives, and when a familiar smell hits us, those memories emerge.
Ford is linking the smell of gasoline with the electric revolution in a way that appeals to those who love that particular smell. This is a smart way to bring up EVs to that friend or family member who drones on about the smell of gasoline every time you drive electric.
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