By Larry P. Vellequette, Crain News Service
DETROIT (May 8, 2014) — Chrysler Group L.L.C.’s Fiat brand has launched a commercial that ties in with the release of the latest Americanized version of the Godzilla franchise featuring the monster gobbling up Fiat 500s like candy.
In the commercial, Godzilla is thrashing its way through an unidentified American city, picking up and devouring brightly colored Fiat 500 minicars while passing on other vehicles. The monster’s discerning tastes causes one military leader in a nearby helicopter to quip: “Looks like he’s craving Italian.”
However, when Godzilla grabs a four-door Fiat 500L — complete with five people inside — and pops it in his mouth, the beast begins to choke. Ultimately, the monster bends over and coughs up the 500L, which races away, while a voice-over exclaims that the four-door “is a lot bigger than you think.”
The 30-second spot was created by Moving Picture Co., the same Canadian visual arts company that did the visual effects for the movie. “Godzilla” opens in theaters on May 16.
Along with the television commercial, Fiat is launching a Fiat Godzilla Giveaway on Friday, May 9, on Facebook, giving away movie passes and concessions in daily sweepstakes. A grand prize winner will receive 10 movie passes, $150 for concessions and Godzilla-themed merchandise. A second sweepstakes through Facebook will give away a three-day trip for two to San Francisco.
The 30-second commercial was created in partnership with Dallas-based Richards Group.
Chrysler and Fiat have done numerous movie tie-ins recently, including the “Fast and Furious” films. Fiat brand sales in the U.S. are up 16 percent so far this year to 15,723, thanks exclusively to the launch of the larger Fiat 500L. Sales of the Fiat 500 minicar are down 15 percent through April.
This report appeared on autonews.com, the website of Automotive News, a Detroit-based sister publication of Tire Business.