Like it or not, 50 Shades of Grey is hot right now, thanks to the new movie that recently hit theaters. Audi is capitalizing on the attention it’s receiving from the film by sponsoring a comical commercial that is apparently an attempt at recreating the notorious elevator scene from the book and movie. As you can see in the video below, it results in anything but steamy passion.
Many gearheads are wondering why Audi is getting involved with a silly story like 50 Shades of Grey. The brand has numerous vehicles strategically placed in the movie, similar to how Volvo was conspicuously featured in the Twilight films. Apparently in the book the protagonist Christian Grey gives Anastasia an Audi, because that’s what every rich playboy does with his flings. The whole thing is pretty silly, which is why making a funny video about it was a smarter move than trying to create one that was dramatic or worse.
The commercial, which was put together by ad agency Venables Bell & Partners, stars Vanessa Bayer from Saturday Night Live. She keeps riding on an elevator while trying to strike up sexy conversations with random strangers, using objects like a whip, handcuffs, and something that sounds like a cell phone vibrating but really isn’t (use your imagination on that one). She even tells one perplexed man that she’s working on kegels and tries to take another man’s car keys for an Audi, of course.
The question is will the commercial resonate with Audi’s customer base, or will it confuse or repulse them? Audi has a younger following than other big luxury brands. According to Forbes, about half of its customers hail from Gen X and Gen Y. Younger people would be more likely to find the commercial funny, even if they don’t like 50 Shades of Grey. Lexus, on the other hand, should steer far away from anything having to do with a book about bondage.