Liu Bolin, the world-renowned Chinese artist famous for painting himself to camouflage into the background of an image, has teamed up with Ford for its latest advertisement for the 2013 Ford Fusion. The print ads aim to highlight how the styling of the new Fusion makes other midsize sedan "disappear." (The obvious joke here would be, "Does it really take this much work to make the Toyota Camry look invisible?"). The easy way out for the Blue Oval would've been to turn to computer programmers to work their magic, but instead, Ford opted to turn to the master illusionist.

Bolin worked with Ford to take Fusion rivals like the Volkswagen Passat, Camry and Honda Accord (and, for some reason, an Audi A4) and paint them to blend into various backgrounds right down to the landscaping, buildings and sidewalks. Ford has thoughtfully provided us with a time lapse video from a few different angles, but there's no telling how long each shot actually took to create in real time.

You'll probably start seeing these print ads showing up in magazines pretty soon, but you can see a making-of video below and then check out one of the campaign's first print ads below.

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Innovative Print Ads Prove How All-New 2013 Ford Fusion 'Stands Out' in Competitive Midsize Car Segment

•The all-new 2013 Ford Fusion is designed to stand out in today's competitive midsize car segment and innovative new print ads for this transformational vehicle bring that concept to life in an unusual, creative way
•To communicate the idea that other cars seem to "disappear" when the new Fusion is on the scene, Ford reached out to Chinese contemporary artist Liu Bolin – nicknamed "the invisible man" – to direct the production of the print ads
•The new Fusion stands apart from the crowd, providing customers with something they've never had before in the midsize car segment – the "and" solution of leading fuel efficiency, smart technology and stunning design

DEARBORN, Mich., Oct. 22, 2012 – In the highly competitive midsize sedan landscape typified by its relatively bland styling, the 2013 Ford Fusion has been designed to stand out. And that's exactly what this transformational all-new car does in innovative print ads inspired by an internationally celebrated contemporary artist nicknamed "the invisible man."

To communicate creatively the concept that all other cars seem to "disappear" when the new Fusion is on the scene, Ford reached out to Chinese artist Liu Bolin to consult on the project. Bolin, renowned for creating photographs in which he paints his body and clothing to camouflage himself seamlessly into his surroundings, was the perfect advisor to bring the concept to fruition.

The new print ads – which will appear in national automotive and lifestyle publications – showcase the Fusion in a city setting with other vehicles hand-painted to blend invisibly into the background. One of the ads says, "First rule of taking the world by surprise? Do something the world will actually notice."

"We wanted to make a provocative statement with the all-new Ford Fusion, to shake up a segment that isn't exactly known for stylish cars," said Jim Farley, group vice president, Global Marketing, Sales and Service. "Now, midsize sedan customers can get the best of both worlds – Fusion can satisfy both their rational side while indulging in a compelling design aesthetic that says you've arrived."

At the center of Fusion's design inspiration was the goal to achieve unparalleled fuel economy. With over 450 hours of development logged in wind tunnels that led to 10% less drag than the outgoing model, the new Fusion is designed with the driver in mind, offering functional design elements that enhance its sleek exterior.

"From large scale proportions to minor details, every element of the new Fusion has been tuned for the right combination of technical excellence and leadership in aerodynamic styling – all of which culminates with a class-leading 47 mpg in both city and highway driving," said Farley.

New Fusion makes other cars on the road 'disappear'

Bolin flew from China to Los Angeles to direct the production of the Fusion print ads. At his command was a team of trained Hollywood studio painters who worked for hours to paint the details of the scenery – brick sidewalks, shrubbery, lamp posts and buildings – onto competitive vehicles parked on the set.

The meticulous paintwork visually conveys the message that other cars are "invisible" in the presence of the new Fusion. According to Bolin, hand-painting the surroundings brings a sense of passion and authenticity to the finished product.

"My work can be done on the computer without the use of paint," said Bolin, referring to a type of photography that is enhanced through the use of computer-generated imagery. "But computers cannot convey emotions. That is something that the artist captures with his paintbrush."

For a behind-the-scenes look at the making of the print ads, visit Ford Social for more information.

The all-new 2013 Ford Fusion

With its sleek new design, the all-new Ford Fusion brings alive the next generation of more expressive vehicles from Ford.

In addition to its fresh face, Fusion offers the broadest selection of fuel-efficient powertrains in the midsize segment. It offers hybrid and plug-in hybrid alternatives, a pair of EcoBoost® four-cylinder engines, a normally aspirated four-cylinder engine, front-wheel-drive and all-wheel-drive applications and a choice between automatic and manually shifted six-speed transmissions.

On sale now, new Fusion offers consumers seven must-have technologies, including a Lane-Keeping System, adaptive cruise control, active park assist and MyFordTouch®.

For more on the new Ford Fusion, check out http://FordFusionStory.com, a special mobile site featuring articles, videos and graphics that are easily shareable directly from a smartphone, tablet or computer browser to Facebook, Twitter, Google+ and blogs.

About Ford Motor Company

Ford Motor Company, a global automotive industry leader based in Dearborn, Mich., manufactures or distributes automobiles across six continents. With about 168,000 employees and about 65 plants worldwide, the company's automotive brands include Ford and Lincoln. The company provides financial services through Ford Motor Credit Company. For more information regarding Ford and its products worldwide, please visit http://corporate.ford.com.


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 72 Comments
      waetherman
      • 2 Years Ago
      Man, those people who own those parked cars are going to be p i s s e d !
      Mazdaspeed6
      • 2 Years Ago
      lol at people saying this looks like an Aston Martin. Just like the 300C looks like a bentley right? Except no one will ever confuse the two and they will be around every corner
      Eddy A
      • 2 Years Ago
      This video shows me that there really are Predators living and driving among us. Where are Arnold and Danny Glover when you need them?
      SPM
      • 2 Years Ago
      We did the same print Ad's for the Toyota Rukus (Scion XB) in Australia about 2 years ago. We used CGI for all the vehicles including the Rukus.
      Mazdaspeed6
      • 2 Years Ago
      With the newest Accord just released and hailed as best in class, as well as the upcoming fuel efficient and reportedly brilliant to drive Mazda 6, Ford really can't claim there car stands out anymore than the competition.
        Yang Xi Gua
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Mazdaspeed6
        Just released? It's been on the market for almost a month now.
          • 2 Years Ago
          @Yang Xi Gua
          [blocked]
        WillieD
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Mazdaspeed6
        Accord is the best in class? Says who?
      Karfreek
      • 2 Years Ago
      Ive driven the new 2013 Fusion as part of a fund raiser for my Daughters school. I have also driven the other cars hidden in this ad. I would not say the Fusion stood out. It was pretty good, but not the best in the class.
      • 2 Years Ago
      [blocked]
        Steve
        • 2 Years Ago
        The S Model starts at $21,700. The hybrid starts at $27,200..... The Lexus ES starts at $36,100. That is a big difference.
        • 2 Years Ago
        [blocked]
        TheMainInsane
        • 2 Years Ago
        Lexus doesn't stand out, and what MB costs $35,000?
      beanrew
      • 2 Years Ago
      Ever hear of Photoshop? Cool concept blah blah blah, but Photoshop is easy and cheaper.
        • 2 Years Ago
        @beanrew
        [blocked]
      Toronto St. Pats
      • 2 Years Ago
      Kinda cool and all but isn't that what CGI is for? Or photoshop.
        jonnybimmer
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Toronto St. Pats
        I thought the same thing. I mean, if folks knew that the cars were really painted then it'd definitely be worth it, but I'm sure most readers will assume its photoshopped anyways. Just like 3D street paintings, pretty cool.
          jonnybimmer
          • 2 Years Ago
          @jonnybimmer
          @AndrewNoNumbers The video is only mentioned in the ad is buried under a block of text. Yes it's in bold, but to a glancing reader there isn't much to notice. @AM2 I never stated CGI was better. Personally, as a person who works with digital media, I appreciate physical techniques a great deal more than digital ones. My concern was that unless this was somehow turned into a video commercial or made the link to the time lapse more obvious, the effort put into this would be lost on the majority of the ad's audience. Unlike the Old Spice commercials and other obvious theater-themed ads, this one hides its methods so well that it might be lost.
          AndrewNoNumbers
          • 2 Years Ago
          @jonnybimmer
          That's why they're showing the time lapse and behind the scenes and all, k?
      • 2 Years Ago
      [blocked]
      Patrick
      • 2 Years Ago
      An Audi A4? You're reaching a bit Ford.
        Randy
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Patrick
        Not really! An A4 is a Passat with a different skin. No?
          Sol
          • 2 Years Ago
          @Randy
          They switched the Passat over to a golf derived based platform in 2005 so you're somewhat correct in that the the a4 and passat shared the same platform in the past though the newest 2011+ Passat uses it's own unique platform
          Jared Montgomery
          • 2 Years Ago
          @Randy
          No.
      • 2 Years Ago
      [blocked]
        Hello, Brian
        • 2 Years Ago
        I don't think that is the point of the exercise. The point is that the Fusion stands out. I have seen a couple of 2013 Accords on the street and it is still rather bland. From the side, it hasn't changed much. From the rear, I always seem mistake them for the Hyundai Genesis that everyone has always complained is derivative. If the Hyundai is derivative, I suppose the Honda is a derivative of a derivative design. That is nothing to be proud of.
        TheMainInsane
        • 2 Years Ago
        Fusion was a second placer. According to Motor Trend, the Passat would have won that test. It's a matter of opinion, thus disregarding your comment.
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