Diary: SUV ads attract ire of motormouth Clarkson

campaignlive.co.uk, Friday, 06 August 2004 12:00AM

Talking of celebrities who are only too willing to take the advertising shilling when it suits them, viewers of Sunday's Top Gear on BBC2 might have been surprised to hear Jeremy Clarkson launch into an attack on car advertising.

Clarkson, who carefully cultivates a no-nonsense image, slammed agencies for producing unrealistic ads for SUVs. He complained the ads use images of people engaged in extreme sports, such as snowboarding down vertical drops or skydiving from great heights, when the cars are more likely to be used by mums on the school run.

Fair enough, you might think, and not the most original observation either.

But surely this is a bit rich coming from a man who is getting paid something not dissimilar to half-a-million quid for fronting BT's current advertising campaign, created by Abbott Mead Vickers BBDO?

Clarkson has a history of working with AMV. In 1998, it picked him to front a campaign for Granada Rentals and two years earlier he was picked as the brand spokesman for a Mansfield Bitter campaign through the same agency. (And whatever happened to those two brands?)

You might say AMV's Clarkson commercials are about as realistic as an overpaid celebrity giving a toss about how BT treats the general public.

This article was first published on campaignlive.co.uk


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