Plug-In “Product Placement” Of The Year Winner: Chevrolet Volt
Every year the staff at InsideEVs pours through hundreds of hours of film and television footage to suss out the winner of our prestigious Car of the Year: Product Placement Award.
Alright, none of that is true.
We arbitrary picked our winner as the“hands down” favorite based solely on my extensive evening couch time in front of the television. And even at that, the award was created out of our frustration at the numerous (and mostly pointless) Car of the Year competitions that spring up this time of year.
These annual competitions were born in the days of print media, where your local supermarket’s two or three car magazines would each choose 4 or 5 cars to compete for an imaginary crown and
whichever manufacturer spent the most money advertising the car in that magazine would win the most deserving would win.
Over the years, the magazine competitions expanded to include sub-brands and categories like SUV of the Year, Truck of the Year, Green Car of the Year, Car With Chrome Door Handles of the Year, until basically every car whose corporate headquarters might throw some advertising dollars behind it were nominated.
The worst offender of Award-mania? Motor Trend. At last check, we believe that the outlet had nominated 4 more cars than are actually in production today. Perhaps I exaggerate a touch; but is the Coda Sedan really up for Car of The Year? You bet it is.
So without further adieu, the InsideEVs Product Placement Award goes to the Chevrolet Volt!
(Psst, GM please contact us if you want to sponsor this page)
During 2012 we scientifically calculated that the Volt showed up on every show on CBS that aired. We assume that GM’s outgoing marketing boss Joel Ewanick had a relative or friend at the network who gave him some kind of friends and family discount on advertising. How I Met Your Mother? Check. Criminal Minds? Check. Can we use Dallas too? — It used to air on CBS. Anyway, you get the idea…the Volt showed up a lot.
Where the Volt did not show up this year was at the Super Bowl, with GM deciding it was not getting the right price for ad spots, but it does appear that the money was still spent on getting the Volt on television.
I am told that Breaking In, Wilfred, and Rizzoli & Isles are all shows on TV. And in common with my non-interest in watching them, they all had Chevrolet Volt product placement spots in them as well.
We should note that in choosing this award we were disturbed that Toyota Prius Plug-In had not yet begun its advertising blitz when our contest arbitrarily closed on October 31st (it does however begin this month), as we feel it easily could have easily overtaken the Chevrolet with a single new product placement offering such as any of the wildly intrusive ones promoting the standard Prius that are currently airing on FOX’s Bones.
Dr. Lance Sheets: Whoa! Ghost Driver
Booth: How did you do that?!?
Bones: Its called intelligent parking assist. The car (Prius) guides itself into the parking spot.
Booth: Whoa! Look at that, huh?!? Does it solve murders?
Bones: Course not.
Booth: Good. I like my job.
(Because advertisers and networks are like ravenous dogs pulling down original content of their advertising transgressions off the Internet, we can only offer a video of a video of the above Prius ad)
In the end, perhaps it is fitting the Chevrolet Volt won the inaugural product placement award, as the car itself did not first debut to the public via a GM press release, or at an international auto show…but through an unintentional revealing while shooting its first product placement spot in the movie Transformers 2: Revenge of the Fallen. Up until that moment, only the concept Chevrolet Volt had been displayed.
Below: First footage of the Volt from the set of Transformers 2)