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An af’ford’able matter
Ford India looks to shatter its ‘costly ownership’ perception with a witty take on gossipmongers

Shruti Venkatesh

Be it the classic Mustang, the rugged Endeavour, or the swanky EcoSport, Ford has a reputation for creating some of the most iconic cars that one could own. At the same time, it is widely believed that their cars are expensive to maintain. This, the company says, is completely false. And in a bid to break this perception, Ford has launched a new ad film called ‘Maine Toh Sunah Hai’. The campaign is an extension of their 2017 film, which featured on-screen ‘villains’ – Prakash Raj, Sudha Chandran and Gulshan Grover – and drew a parallel between how their on-screen persona influences their perception off-screen as well.

“We recognise the importance of a low ownership cost for Indian customers and have worked relentlessly to ensure that the service cost of Ford cars is not just transparent, but also competitive throughout the car’s lifecycle. Our latest campaign delivers this message in a light-hearted way,” says Rahul Gautam, vice president - marketing, Ford India.

The film, which is over a minute long, begins with a group of men discussing Sharmaji’s recent purchase of a Ford car. While one man points out that Ford’s service is expensive, the other says that Sharmaji doesn’t have to worry about it, as his garment shop brings good business. The others then join in, painting various scenarios of how Sharmaji is be able to afford this “high cost of service”. Reasons ranging from making a quick buck through his import-export business to investing in gold are thrown around the table, as the others visualise him in swanky poses in front of his Ford.

In the end, veteran actor Vijay Raaz, who plays the role of Sharmaji, says that gossip and rumors like these will keep going on, but the fact is that Ford’s cost of service is “surprisingly affordable”. He also urges the audience to use the Service Price Promise calculator and compare other brands on cost and transparency to realise the Ford advantage. “We chose Vijay Raaz as we wanted to ensure that the cast was someone who had superior acting skills, in order to bring alive the character of Sharmaji,” says Nitika Parmar, senior creative director, GTB India.

Much like their 2017 film, this one, too, resembles a film scene, making it dramatic, hilarious and informative at the same time. Add to this the gossipmonger’s colloquial punch line – ‘maine toh suna hai’ – and the ad becomes the story next door.

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