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

Kylie stars in the latest Lexus ad
Kylie stars in the latest Lexus ad

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

Skip to full table

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


Before commenting please read our rules for commenting on articles.

If you see a comment you find offensive, you can flag it as inappropriate. In the top right-hand corner of an individual comment, you will see 'flag as inappropriate'. Clicking this prompts us to review the comment. For further information see our rules for commenting on articles.

comments powered by Disqus
Brand Republic Jobs

subscribe now


Microsoft profits boosted by cloud computing drive
Oasis #springasmile digital campaign gets people doing good deeds
Coca-Cola: 'Don't approach bloggers with a fait accompli'
Tesco CMO Matt Atkinson: 'It is so important not to stereotype mothers'
McDonald's gives Ronald a new look ahead of global 'Fun times' social media push
In pictures: BrewDog opens first craft beer shop BottleDog for 'beer aficionados'
Facebook ad revenue leaps $1bn as it invests in targeting
Malteser or Maltesers? Mars takes Hershey trademark dispute to court
Apple Q2 profits top $10bn as iPhone sales soar
Lynx tells men not to leave love to fate
HBO captures awkwardness of watching sex scenes with parents
Primark to open first US stores with Boston chosen as flagship location
Marketing spend on the up but a reality check is needed before celebrating
Top 10 ads of the week: Jackpotjoy and BT Broadband fend off Kevin Bacon
Lidl beats Tesco to 10m Facebook fans
Center Parcs ad banned for encouraging parents to take kids out of school
Coca-Cola, Cadbury and Amazon named top brands for targeting youth market
Leaked document shows Nokia to be rebranded as Microsoft Mobile
Nike lays-off hardware staff in move that casts doubt on future of FuelBand
Greenpeace says save the bees or humans will die
What brands need to know about changes to VAT and online downloads in 2015
Jimmy Savile victims urged to claim compensation in new ad campaign
UKIP launches biggest  ad campaign and stirs up 'racist' accusations
Apple boss Tim Cook provides voiceover on ad touting firm's renewed green commitments
John Lewis walks consumers through its history to celebrate 150 years of business
Waitrose boosts content strategy with 'Weekend Kitchen with Waitrose' C4 tie-up
Hottest virals: Cute puppies star in Pedigree ad, plus Idris Elba and Fruyo
Amnesty International burns candles to illuminate new hope
Tom of Finland's 'homoerotic' drawings made into stamps
Toyota achieves the impossible by calming angry Roman drivers