The Chrysler commercial that played during halftime of the Super Bowl has generated a lot of buzz. Many political pundits on the right are saying that it is an ad that endorses President Obama because it talks about how it’s halftime in the Super Bowl but in the grand scheme of things it’s halftime for America, and we are going to come back strong in the second half. The right wingers are saying that the commercial is trying to say that Obama will lead this country towards greatness if he is reelected, and since this is an election year, we are at the half-time of his eight years in office.
The ad talks about the ways that we are going to recover from the economic hard times that have befallen this country. Talking about Detroit and how hard things have been there for the last several years but the people there have not given up. All the while never actually showing much of anything that is in Detroit and the ad also starred Clint Eastwood who doesn’t have anything to do with Detroit. The right also says that the ad is somehow payback for Obama bailing out the U.S. auto industry.
I would submit to you that this ad is not political, it does not try to prop up Obama, and it is not a subtle political campaign ad. I say that the ad is just plain stupid. This ad comes from Chrysler touting the American spirit and how great that is. Chrysler is owned by Fiat, an Italian company. Foreign ownership of this once proud American icon is nothing new however since it was Mercedes Benz from Germany that owned them for 10 years before Fiat did. This same Chrysler Company is the company that the U.S. taxpayers lost 1.8 billion dollars of bailout money on when the Federal Government sold its last remaining shares to Fiat for a big loss.
As with the Chrysler Super Bowl ad from 2011, what makes them think that showing people and places from the dilapidated, one time industrial powerhouse of Detroit will make us want to go out and buy one of their cars. Chrysler lost so much ground by building unreliable cars that Americans don’t want to buy, and losing market share year in and year out, to the point that the City of Detroit fell on its face. Are we to believe now that because Detroit is an economically depressed, and a run-down mess, that this somehow made them start building good cars? Is this supposed to be the result of getting bought out and bailed out by the U.S. government and Fiat? Did the government makes start building good cars, or was it Fiat; maybe it was the rough people that live in Detroit. Maybe they build good cars now because of the rap star Eminem. This makes as much sense as ocean front property in North Dakota.
Because Fiat now owns Chrysler they call the shots. Chrysler had already moved a lot of manufacturing to places outside of the U.S. so I think some of that might be to blame for the jobless rate in Detroit. Now with Fiat running the show many new models that are currently planned are actually Fiats that were originally designed for the European market, and are now being adapted to be sold as a Dodge in the U.S. or something like that. I am not saying that this is necessarily a bad thing, it's just disingenuous to act as if Chrysler is there fighting its way back for the sake of the people of the U.S. and the City of Detroit.
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headlights and taillights.
I am not trying to tear down Chrysler, in fact I hope that they succeed but this commercial is the biggest non-sequitor that I can remember in advertising for some time. The thing that makes it even crazier is that the ad was about two minutes long and it aired during the Super Bowl. The cost of this ad must have been around 10 million. Maybe they could have used that 10 million to pay back the taxpayers for the money that was lost in bailout.