Land Rover's marketing campaigns in the late 1980s and 1990s, orchestrated in part by the late, brilliant public relations man Bill Baker, have proven to be one of the most successful and ingenious experiments in automotive brand building. The Range Rover Classic was a 17-year-old design when it came to North America in 1987, but with a heavy dose of dry British wit, the PR team established the company as something different -- and thus, the perfect vehicle for the owner who was a bit different, too. Now Land Rover North America has replicated this classic style in a new set of promotional videos, joining Land Rovers old and new together in recreations of these iconic ads.
The new ads are all videos, paying tribute to both TV ads and print ads. They start out with a recreation of the original ad with just the classic vehicle, before the modern equivalent of that Land Rover vehicle comes into the frame. The original print text is on the bottom of the print-derived ads, while the TV-style 30-second Range Rover ad mimics the original narration almost perfectly.
Compare the new version of this Range Rover Classic ad to the original:
The other three ads recreate print ads for the Range Rover Classic and Discovery 1.
Here's the original ads these three were based on:
As a diehard enthusiast and daily driver of the Land Rover offerings of the 1980s and 1990s, I really love seeing the past vehicles in the spotlight like this. Although the design and technology of the modern Land Rover vehicles are sometimes far apart from their ancestors, the company does hold their heritage in extremely high stead. I like seeing them retain the tie to those brilliant campaigns of the 1990s that were always a welcome surprise flipping through a magazine. It's not even the first time they've hearkened back to these ads; the Range Rover Evoque was promoted soon after its introduction with the Range Rover Classic in homage to 1987's muddy "Introducing the Most Beautiful Vehicle in the World" print ad.
I'm not sure that many other automakers have an iconic, successful long-time ad campaign this iconic to fall back on, even if they wanted to.
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