At least it had the desired effect - it's got people talking about Ram Trucks.
The Super Bowl is one of the biggest TV events in the US watched by millions every year, so to be featured in one of the many commercial advertising slots is a massive deal. It’s why so many movie trailers premiere during the Super Bowl, as we saw this year with the long-awaited release of the new Solo Star Wars movie teaser along with trailers for other major blockbuster movies. Automakers also see the Super Bowl as a vital advertising opportunity to broadcast car commercials to huge audiences.
This year, FCA aired no less than five commercials during the sport event to promote the all-new 2018 Jeep Wrangler, Cherokee, and Ram trucks like the 2019 1500 following its debut at Detroit last month – but one of the commercials has been the subject of controversy since it aired. And it's not hard to see why.
The first 60-second Ram commercial entitled “Built to Serve” promoting the 2019 Ram 500 features a voiceover taken from Martin Luther King, Jr’s ‘The Drum Major Instinct’ sermon to support the company’s belief “that true greatness is achieved by helping others.” “The Ram Truck brand believes in Dr. King’s notion that ‘everybody can be great because everybody can serve,’ and Ram owners demonstrate this commitment every day in lending helping hands to their families, friends and communities,” FCA wrote while describing the Super Bowl campaign. Or at least that’s what the automaker's noble intention was - to say it's been badly received is an understatement.
Unsurprisingly, people aren’t happy that Ram Trucks is using the voice of anti-capitalist Martin Luther King to sell its trucks. You can get a taste of the massive media backlash FCA has received just by glancing at the video's caustic comments. The second commercial is less controversial, showcasing the 2019 Ram 1500 Limited with a group of Vikings using the truck to tow a ship.
We think you'll agree that this is a more fitting way to show off the abilities of a new pickup truck without causing any public outcry. Still, at least the controversial commercial had the desired effect – it’s got people talking about Ram Trucks.