Adwatch (30 March) - Top 20 recall: Is the new Lexus ad making a big noise?

Hybrid ad starring Kylie adds a touch of glamour to portrayal of a quality driving experience.

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I drive a Lexus - a 4x4 Lexus in fact. It's not a hybrid, but I find it essential kit for coping with the peaks and valleys of Islington.

I remember one day almost losing it on the steep descent toward Angel, but fortunately I had the presence of mind to slip her into overdrive, preventing what I'm sure would have been a pretty nasty scratch to the left (heated) wing mirror.

I have to say she (because she is, indeed, a she) is a dream to drive. Smooth, robust and silent (rather like myself) and well stacked with a raft of hidden delights (again ...).

So I recognise well the Lexus that is portrayed in the marque's latest spot. I recognise the lovely juxtaposition between the incessant noise of the outside world and the beautiful tranquillity of the on-board experience, the constant drum beat of background nonsense against the calm, nay luxurious, texture of stillness. Quiet. Lovely quiet. Beautiful quiet.

It might seem a small benefit to derive from something of such high cost, but if, like me, you have two kids under the age of three and face an army of bleating creatives daily, then quiet is worth twice the price.

Of course, quiet is a catch-all for so many other quality features too. There seems to be a bit of an untidy gear crunch (sorry) into the hybrid story, but let's forgive it that. It's insightful, premium, distinctive, unstuffy, unpretentious (or just pretentious enough) and it makes me proud(ish) to be a Lexus driver. So, 'Join the quiet revolution'? OK.

Then there's Kylie. Driving. Smiling. Seductive. Small. (I'm sure that from that driving position her feet wouldn't reach the pedals.) It seems incongruous that Kylie is the face of this new Lexus, but incongruous can be good. Incongruous, sprinkled sparingly, can mean surprising, drive reappraisal and stimulate an intense response, which is what all good communications should do. It's a bit of a blunt tool, but Lexus just got sexier in my mind and that's no bad thing.

Kylie's forehead, though, is a different matter. I just can't take my eyes off it. It just does not move. Not a jot. In fact, her face barely moves. The more I watch it, the more I'm led to believe that Kylie is no longer the pocket-size popette of gold hot pants, but is in fact a Thunderbird - Thunderbird 7, perhaps - and what I had initially assumed to be a cutaway to the speed dial, I'm now thinking may well be a Botox pump.

It's not Kylie at all. It's some kind of Kylie-hybrid. Oh, hang on - hybrid?


Adwatch (30 March) Top 20 recalled ads
Latest Mar-23 Brand Agency/TV Buyer Recall
rank       %
1 (–)

Office for National

Statistics – Census 

Bray Leino/MediaCom 37
2 -11 Tesco  The Red Brick Road/Initiative 35
3 (–) The Co-operative  TBWA\Manchester/PHD Rocket 34
4 (18=) Morrisons  DLKW Lowe/MEC 33
5= (–) Homebase  Leo Burnett/Mindshare 29
5= (–) Santander  WCRS/Carat 29
5= (–) Nokia N8 

Wieden & Kennedy London/


5= (–) Maggi So Juicy  Publicis/Mindshare 29
9 (–)

Kellogg's Special K

Mini Breaks 

Leo Burnett/Carat 26
10 (–) Babybel  RKCR Y&R/OMD UK 25
11= (–) Coca-Cola Zero  Grey Copenhagen/Vizeum 24
11= (–) Citroën DS3  Euro RSCG London/OMD UK 24
13= (–) Boots  Mother/OMD UK 22
13= (–) Lexus CT 

CHI & Partners/Zenith


15 (–) Air Wick  Bartle Bogle Hegarty/ZenithOptimedia 21
16= (–) Currys/PC World  M&C Saatchi/Walker Media 20
16= (–) Innocent  In-house/Vizeum 20
16= (–)

Maybelline Lash

Discovery Mascara 



16= (–) Domino's Pizza 

Big Communications/Arena


16= (–)

Rimmel Glam'Eyes


JWT London/OMD UK 20


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