Ad of the Day: Mercedes-Benz

The automaker builds an invisible car to hype its zero-emission fuel-cell technology

Here is proof positive that ad agencies watch nerdy science videos on YouTube just as often as the rest of us.

Remember a couple of years ago when "invisibility cloak" technology made headlines? Now, Mercedes is in on the act with a similar, albeit much simpler stunt recalling this zombie costume. Aside from the construction of the "cloak," the execution here is simple and effective, with the first part of the ad basically a riff on this theme, and then the second part offering a breakdown of how they did it. I guess that might spoil things slightly, if you're just into the magic of it all, but director Daniel Schmidt packs a lot into the 90-second spot—enough that you could conceivably cut it down into three shorter ads: one with the car mysteriously appearing in empty environments, one with the construction of the LED "costume," and one with people screwing around with the cameras in Germany.

Agency Jung von Matt has pretty much nailed the web-ad model: show something that people want to share with their friends because it's cool enough to stand alone on its merits as a stunt or a joke, rather than because it's slathered with association-producing logos. This is the kind of stuff that ends up plastered all over your Facebook feed.

The ad's connection to its larger point—that fuel-cell technology renders the car carbon-neutral—is a little bit tenuous. Does carbon neutral really equal "invisible"? Still, it's interesting to see Mercedes jumping on the fuel-cell bandwagon, what with the infrastructure supporting it so small (PDF link). Maybe in a couple of years they can pull the invisibility cloak off all those refueling stations that are no doubt hidden across the country.


Agency: Jung von Matt/Alster

Client: Mercedes-Benz

Head of Marketing: Lüder Fromm

ECD: Thimoteus Wagner

ECD: Fabian Frese

ECD: Götz Ulmer

Creative Director: Michael Ohanian

Creative Direction: Jonas Keller

Creative Direction: Martin Strutz

Art Director: Jonas Keller

Production Company: Markenfilm

Director: Daniel Schmidt

Graphics: Daniel Soares

Concept: Michael Ohanian

Concept: Jonas Keller

Post Prod: Tina Rentzsch

Production: Martin Schön

Programming: Bettina Ackermann

Programming: Christopher Schultz

Sound Engineer: Thomas Keller

Head of Brand Communication: Anders Sundt Jensen

Publish date: March 21, 2012 © 2020 Adweek, LLC. - All Rights Reserved and NOT FOR REPRINT