The Bold Moves marketing campaign from Ford has taken on many facets, but the one we're most familiar is with of the boob tube variety, a.k.a. commercials. Like most automotive marketing campaigns, the ad agency got involved early and produced some airy, feel-good spots that show your average Joes doing "bold" things. They no doubt scored highly with focus groups, but no one would credit an ounce of the Fusion's success so far with these spots that are designed to elecit emotions, but instead draw yawns. Again, like most automotive marketing campaigns, Ford dealers have likely complained loud enough now about these ads that the Blue Oval had to make a substantive change, so this morning Ford debuted a new set of ads that showcase some hard numbers and objective (we hope) information.

The commercials show a three-way showdown between the AWD Fusion V6, Honda Accord EX-L V6 and Toyota Camry XLE V6. Called the Fusion Challenge, this event was organized by Car and Driver, which got 600 of its subscribers to come out and drive these vehicles. They were then subjected to the classic Pepsi Challenge schtick, and the Fusion wound up beating its Japanese competitors in the hearts and minds of these subscribers. Bam! Instant commercial content that will no doubt strike a more resonant chord with buyers than the previous spots.

The Jalopnik folk have questioned the validity of the challenge itself considering that it was organized by Car & Driver, which accepts many hundreds of thousands of dollars from Ford each year in the form of ad dollars. Who knows how valid the challenge actually is, but could you imagine the awkwardness if Car and Driver's subscribers had chosen Coke instead of Pepsi in this case?

[Source: Ford, Jalopnik]