The German automaker launches a new advertising campaign this month under the tag, "Das Auto" -- translated from German as "the car." It's meant to signify VW's place as an icon of pop culture, while giving the brand a jump-start in the U.S., where sales are slumping and the declining dollar is causing billion-dollar losses.
The icon of the new ad and TV campaign is Max, a talking 1964 black Beetle. Max talks with superstars like Project Runway's Heidi Klum, David Hasselhoff, Leonard Nimoy and Bobby Knight -- and the topic is "what people want."
Tim Ellis, vice president of marketing at Volkswagen of America, says "Max personifies Volkswagen's past, present and vision for the future. Through him, we will reconnect with American consumers and let them know how Volkswagen understands and responds to what the people want."
Ads with Max will roll out on television and on the VW Web site throughout the month of April. They'll be used to highlight the model launches of a slew of new VWs coming to the U.S. market this year -- the Tiguan, Routan, Jetta TDI, SportsWagen.