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Chrysler takes the wraps off new 300 campaign

by Bill Cawthon on

The new advertising campaign for the new 2011 Chrysler 300 builds on the “Imported from Detroit” theme of the Chrysler 200 Super Bowl ad with stories of people who possess an exceptional capacity for hard work. Each individual featured in this campaign has a direct link to Detroit and shares the spirit of the city.

Since its inception, the Chrysler 300 has been a symbol of American style. The 2011 model offers a new bent on tailoring: each trim level is designed to speak to a specific band of consumer. The common thread uniting this diverse demographic is the 300 is not a car for those simply born to privilege: it that speaks to an audience that knows where it’s going but, hasn’t forgotten where it came from.

“The individuals in these commercials represent more than success stories,” said Olivier Francois, Chrysler Groups’s Lead Executive of Marketing. “They represent a brand of determination that Detroit has come to stand for. These are true stories of people who worked hard and are now able to enjoy the luxury they deserve; and luxury feels better earned. These three individuals define the target customer for the all-new 2011 Chrysler 300.”

Included in the commercials are record producer, artist and entrepreneur Dr. Dre, New York fashion designer John Varvatos and Detroit Lions football player Ndamukong Suh. Allpar first reported on the new ads during our coverage of the New York Auto Show.

Ndamukong Suh – Homecoming: Suh is the all-pro, NFL “Rookie of the Year” defensive lineman for the Detroit Lions. After playing football in college, Suh was selected second overall in the NFL draft. His play on the field has made him a sports star in Detroit. Suh, from Portland, Oregon, was born to a Jamaican mother and a Cameroonian father.

In “Homecoming,” Suh proudly drives through Portland in his new 2011 Chrysler 300, retracing his humble beginnings. As he drives, we see brief glimpses of his childhood room with pictures and a collection of sports trophies from his youth are shown. As Suh pulls up to his parent’s home, his mother emerges from the house and greets him with a hug and a kiss.

John Varvatos – Attitude: Detroit native John Varvatos started his own company representing an entire men’s lifestyle brand in 2000. The fashion designer has been recognized three times by the CFDA and was honored as GQ’s “Designer of the Year.” At an early age John was exposed to defining musicians. The creative spirit, electricity and edginess intrinsic in the personal style of these rock ‘n’ roll legends inspired John and influenced the development of his eclectic sensibility. This can be seen as a unifying theme in his design and it is deeply ingrained in every expression of his brand.

In “Attitude,” Varvatos seeks inspiration at a record store in Brooklyn. He rummages through a stack of vinyl records and we are given some insight into his Detroit musical influences. Varvatos, record under his arm, gets into his Chrysler 300 and drives through an urban neighborhood, passing late night clubs and people in the street. Varvatos parks his Chrysler 300, walks up a flight of stairs and into his studio. His walls are filled with his creative influences; we see open books and drawing pads. While the rest of the city plays, he puts on his new record and settles in to a night of work. His Detroit blue-collar spirit pushes him late into the night, with Detroit-based rock music serving as his fuel. Varvatos is a man who hasn’t forgotten where he came from.

Dr. Dre™ – Good Things: Dr. Dre has revolutionized music throughout his career. His work as an artist includes some of the most influential and essential music in hip-hop. He is also considered to be one of the greatest music producers of the past quarter century and has also developed talent like Eminem and Snoop Dogg. Currently he is working to improve the quality of sound with his most recent venture, Beats by Dr. Dre, while he also finishes his long-awaited and much anticipated final solo album, Detox.

In “Good Things,” Dr. Dre is driving through the streets of Los Angeles in a Beats by Dr. Dre-equipped 2012 Chrysler 300. A voiceover explains “good things” don’t necessarily come to those who wait, but instead to those who work to make it happen. As he drives through the streets, people respond to the music pouring out of his car. Eventually Dr. Dre reaches his destination, a hip-hop club, where he exits the vehicle and delivers a line reminiscent of the one delivered in the Chrysler brand Super Bowl commercial, “Born of Fire,” but, this time, for a different audience, “This is L.A. and this is what we do.” Good Things is scheduled to launch this summer.

Chrysler brand’s national advertising campaign was created in partnership with Wieden+Kennedy of Portland, Ore. and launched the first week of May. The campaign is supported by broadcast, print and digital media placement. Homecoming and Attitude can be viewed on the Chrysler brand Facebook page at and on the Chrysler brand You Tube channel at

Bill Cawthon grew up in the auto industry in the 1950s. His Dad worked for Chrysler and Bill spent a number of Saturdays down on the plant floor at Dodge Main in Hamtramck. Bill is also the U.S. market correspondent for, a British auto industry publication, and a member of the Texas Auto Writers Association, which has named the Jeep Grand Cherokee the “SUV of Texas” several times and named the Ram 1500 as the “Truck of Texas” two years running.

Bill has owned five Plymouths (including the only 1962 “Texan”), one Dodge and one Chrysler and is still trying to figure out how to justify a Wrangler. He also has owned at least one of every 1:87 scale model of a Chrysler product. You can reach him directly at (206) 888-7324 or by using the form.

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