• Mar 27, 2009
Click above to watch commercial after the jump

The new Honda Insight, while not technically a full parallel hybrid like the Prius (it can cruise on electric power alone but not accelerate), will nevertheless be cross shopped heavily with the heavy weight from Toyota. The Insight's main selling point is its price, which starts under $20,000, but you wouldn't know that from Honda's first Insight ad.

The commercial, called 'Let it Shine', was created by the Wieden+Kennedy Amsterdam and uses a bank of Insights parked in a grid near the mountains as pixels in a giant LED-like display. When the sun goes down, the headlights begin flickering on and off to create a cutesy animation to the tune of "This Little Light of Mine".

It's the same kind of creative marketing we've come to expect from Honda, which scored its biggest commercial hit with a Honda Accord commercial that showed a Rube Goldberg-like machine created entirely out of car parts. The Insight commercial won't actually air in the U.S., so you're best chance to see it is after the jump. We've also included a Making Of video that shows just how difficult it was to produce.

[Source: Honda]



Making of 'Let it Shine'





PRESS RELEASE

Honda Shines Bright In New TV Ad To Support Affordable Hybrid Car

March 26, 2009 - Honda will debut its latest TV ad 'Let it Shine' in April to support the launch of its new hybrid car, the Insight. The advertisement is part of an integrated marketing campaign to work towards the company's aim of environmental leadership across Europe, the Middle East, Africa and Russia (EMEAR) by 2015.

The 60, 30, 20 and 15-second TV spots marks the global launch of the all-new Insight – the most affordable hybrid on the market – which aims to make cleaner car technology accessible to a wider audience. The new Insight goes on sale at the start of April in most of Europe.

The advertisement opens on what appears to be the world's largest LED screen displaying an animated sequence of simple dot matrix graphic stories that depict the notion of 'good'. The animations show hugs and kisses, frowns turned into smiles, and general goodwill – all aiming to convey people's inherent wish to be good. As the animation plays it is slowly revealed to the viewer that it is actually being created entirely by the headlights of hundreds of Honda Insight cars. The spectacle is set to a bespoke recorded version of 'This Little Light of Mine' created by Berend Dubbe.

'Let it Shine' has been created by Wieden+Kennedy Amsterdam for use across Europe, Middle East, Africa and Russia. The European debut of 'Let it Shine' takes place on March 28 in Belgium.

The campaign extends Honda's strategy of continuing to be at the forefront in environmental technologies and communications. This new approach underpins a communications plan which will run alongside the expansion of Honda's hybrid range with a coupe based on the CR-Z concept and a Jazz hybrid set to join the new Insight and existing Civic Hybrid in the next two years.

Chris Brown, Head of Marketing for Honda Motor Europe comments: "We would like to become the most admired company in the world, and to do this we need to have the most admired brand and communications across our region, EMEAR. This is a continuation of our journey."

This latest campaign is truly integrated; with print, outdoor and digital in addition to TV. The theme 'Everyone Wants to Be Good' is incorporated throughout, as well as the iconic 'Honda Eco' flower - a visual cue to the 'Eco Assist' system within the Insight which encourages and rewards efficient driving.

In the end, although the team discovered that the idea was logistically feasible, they were concerned about the carbon footprint that a shoot of that magnitude would leave. After doing the work to see what was possible W+K and Honda made a conscious decision to look at a more environmentally friendly alternative. The result was a fusion of modelling software for animation, a small number of Insight vehicles for scale and a few hundred Insight headlights. The vehicles and headlights were precisely spaced and wired together while a specially created computer program created the two separate halves of the animations. These animation halves were subsequently married together in post-production.

This approach allowed the team to greatly reduce the carbon footprint of the shoot. To further limit carbon output they relied on vehicles already located in South Africa, grouped shipments of props and lights as much as possible, and mandated group transportation of personnel to and from shoot. For further good measure, the shoot's carbon output that could not be prevented was entirely offset through carbon credits purchased through the Carbon-Neutral Company's Unity Portfolio.

'Let it Shine' was directed by Erik van Wyk and creative directed by Jeff Kling, John Norman and Sue Anderson. It debuts across Europe in April and will be shown in 14 countries initially.
First air date is Belgium on 28th March.


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 38 Comments
      • 5 Years Ago
      They don't have the money to build a sports car or even improve the one they make but they have time for this crap.

      They are going to be as boring as Toyota, but I guess this is the goal.
        zapperdude60
        • 5 Years Ago
        *That doesn't surprise me
        zapperdude60
        • 5 Years Ago
        The Insight is supposed to be a fairly engaging car to drive. That Every Honda is sporty. I know it sounds crazy, but its almost like there is some minimum requirement of fun in each car. I hate Honda's new design language, but at least it beats Toyota's philosophy of melting their old designs. Toyotas just drive like appliances. And no one in their right mind would want to be as boring as Toyota.
        • 5 Years Ago
        @JDMlover

        Sure, we'll get our heads out of Honda's ass, as soon as you get your head out of Toyota's.

        By the way, the IS-F is about the only worthwhile car Toyota builds, and it's really not that impressive compared to the competition.Toyota has nothing on Honda, unless you count higher sales, from Toyota's brainwashed customers.
        • 5 Years Ago
        "Toyotas just drive like appliances."

        And Hondas ARE appliances. Big difference...
        • 5 Years Ago
        ummm last time i checked...viewers said the New Prius handle better then the insight.

        Also....Honda has no car that can match the IS-F...so Toyota has the hands up.


        Also...not every Honda handles...get your head out hondas ass.
        • 5 Years Ago
        @Saluki:
        What a dumb, irrelevant and meaningless comment.
        • 5 Years Ago
        honda could do worse than to emulate toyota.

        which it isn't even doing....

        this isn't exactly the time for sports cars.

        and don't worry your sweet little head, the CRZ is right around the corner.
        • 5 Years Ago
        Toyota may have an IS-F, but in general, Hondas are sportier than their Toyota counterparts. They ride firmer and handle better, although some of the new Hondas have overboosted steering feel.

        Drive an Accord and Camry and see which one handles better and which one is cushier. Or a TL and an ES, MDX and RX/GX, Civic and Corolla. No doubt, the Toyotas are far softer vehicles.
        • 5 Years Ago
        Last time I checked, the IS-F can't even match the IS-F.
        That car is more fail than I care to talk about.
        Honda > Toyota cars any day of the week.
        • 5 Years Ago
        They don't have the money? What type of idiotic comment is that? Honda has enough money to buy your soul if it wanted to.

        Maybe, jusssst maybe, the people at Honda know a wee bit more about business than you and don't see a reason to have a sports car? Nahh that can't be it, Mr. Saluki could run any business best (if only someone would give him a chance!).
      • 5 Years Ago
      wow. that was awesome.


      and the song was perfect. definitely gets the idea across. very successful

      good job honda.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Very cool commercial. A different song would have made it something I could watch more than once without muting my computer however.
        • 5 Years Ago
        I muted it too! Didn't want rover to barf on me.
        Carlos
        • 5 Years Ago
        Why I thought it was a good song?

        Very cool commercial.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Really cool commercial, though the "making of" video seems cut off. The song is a bit meh too like the first poster said.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Very entertaining. Honda is always very creative in their advertising.
      • 5 Years Ago
      The making of this commercial isnt quite Eco friendly.
        • 5 Years Ago
        How so? Are you brainwashed by those that goes like "OMG I SEE A ELECTRIC LIGHTBULB OMG OMG POLLUTION CO2 THE EARTH IS GOING TO BLOW UP NOOOOEZZZZ!!"?

        Otherwise I don't see much of a problem with this commercial. It's very creative, and impressive both on the macroscopic and microscopic scale. Thumbs up to Honda for another excellent advertisement.
        • 5 Years Ago
        Maybe you should read the article you're commenting on. The last couple of paragraphs are dedicated to explaining the ECO aspects of the commercial.

        "...To further limit carbon output they relied on vehicles already located in South Africa, grouped shipments of props and lights as much as possible, and mandated group transportation of personnel to and from shoot. For further good measure, the shoot's carbon output that could not be prevented was entirely offset through carbon credits purchased through the Carbon-Neutral Company's Unity Portfolio."
      • 5 Years Ago
      I'm going to assume LED's are going to become cheaper to manufacture?
      • 5 Years Ago
      "The Insight's main selling point is its price, which starts under $20,000, but you wouldn't know that from Honda's first Insight ad."

      I've never seen this ad, the first one I have seen specifically stated that the Insight was the hybrid priced for the rest of us.
      Joe Ward
      • 5 Years Ago
      Wrong choice of song, has nothing to do with cars or headlamps.
      • 5 Years Ago
      I wonder what stupid reason this commercial won't be use in the U.S.? Honestly, I think it's perfect for the targeted demographic...plus it would one up Toyota.
        • 5 Years Ago
        I agree. Like the 'Cog' commercial that preceeded it, I don't understand why Honda would think this sort of marketing won't translate well across the pond. Oh well. Still a pretty good ad though.
      • 5 Years Ago
      This isnt unique. It is a play off the opening ceremonies of the Bejing CHINA Olympic games
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