Fiat hasn't been able to lure nearly as many U.S. shoppers as it thought it would to the 500 minicar, and the recent Jennifer Lopez ads were less than warmly received. But this ad for the 500 Abarth starring model Catrinel Menghia seducing a passer-by in Italian with a little froth? Let's just say it may be more relevant to your interests.
Fiat-Chrysler marketing chief Olivier Francois specializes in provoking audiences into emotional responses, and was the driving force behind Chrysler's "Imported From Detroit" campaign launched at this year's Super Bowl. In Italy, his other ads have ranged from frothy sex pieces to one showing Richard Gere driving into Tibet that aired during the Beijing Olympics, spurring an international outcry from China. Chrysler's sales have rebounded this year, thanks in part to Francois' strategy, but it may take more than one supermodel to make minicars sexy to Americans.
- Catrinel Menghia