Ad Space – Fiat: Official Car of Cheating Boyfriends

You are now entering Ad Space, a realm of commercials, brought before us so we might examine how they work, and discuss why we both love and hate them so. So it is written …

The Product:
Fiat brand cars

The Promotion:

The Pitch:
We’re going all in on the “cheating asshole” demographic.

This isn’t our first time covering ads that appeal directly to the heterosexual male id. From body sprays to hamburgers to xerox machines to domain registry websites, many commercials have thrown sexy ladies at the viewer and promised that, if you buy this one product, sexy fun times will be yours!

I’ve looked more favorably on those ads than most. Advertising is built on telling people that what you’re selling will make their lives better, and for many people, spending time with beautiful and sexually available women is high on their wish list for a better life. Nothing wrong with that.

But this ad … this feels wrong.

The implication is clearly that, because these guys drive Fiats, they’re able to sleep with a bunch of different women. But it establishes this by having the guys’ girlfriends find out and get righteously pissed. Rather than going the usual “sex sells” route of promising consequences free fun, this ad is specifically about guys in committed relationships who cheat on and hurt their girlfriends … with the understanding that viewers will go, “Yes! I wanna be like those guys!

At the end, they even double down and imply that, if you drive a Fiat, people will automatically assume you’re a cheating scumbag. So not only are they courting guys who want to cheat on their girlfriends, they’re saying that, if you don’t want to cheat on your girlfriend, then no, this car isn’t for you.

That’s … that’s a hell of a brand image to create for yourself.