Sony Pictures’ newest Spider-Man reboot starring Tom Holland is getting rave reviews, which is good news for Audi. The luxury car company continues its Marvel product integration on the big screen with Spider-Man: Homecoming, opening July 7.
Movie fans worldwide will get an exclusive first look at the new Audi A8 in the film, which pits Spider-Man against super villain Vulture (played by Michael Keaton). The luxury sedan’s Audi AI technology has been integrated into the film.
Benny Lawrence, manager of media and branded integration at Audi of America, told AListDaily that from Iron Man to Captain America to Spider-Man, the Audi brand has been a key part of these stories through their marketing partnerships.
“These settings are ideal to showcase our high-level technology and performance capabilities to a global audience. Super heroes need super cars,” Lawrence said.
Lawrence said that the not-yet-released luxury sedan’s Audi AI traffic jam pilot is featured in a scene with Holland (as Peter Parker) and Happy Hogan (Jon Favreau).
“It shows how under certain conditions, Audi AI traffic jam pilot will allow the A8 to take over the task of driving for short periods of time when the feature is activated,” Lawrence explained. “And of course Tony Stark drives his Audi R8 V10 Spyder. At one point we see Peter behind the wheel of an Audi TTS Roadster. Tom told us that he thinks that the TTS could outrun Spider-Man, except in New York traffic.”
Audi also enlisted Holland and comedian J.B. Smoove to star in a humorous video short called “Driver’s Test,” which follows Smoove and Parker during a driver’s test. While driving an Audi prototype, Peter notices a bank robbery in progress and uses Audi AI technology to help him fight crime, leaving the instructor none the wiser of Spidey’s quick exit.
Lawrence said at the heart of the Spider-Man character is a timeless, coming-of-age story about an everyday person with extraordinary powers.
“We tried to find the sweet spot where this character arc might intersect with the Audi brand,” Lawrence said. “Passing a driver’s test felt like the perfect milestone in a young person’s life.”
Audi of America’s social media agency of record (Muhtayzik Hoffer) developed the promotional campaign. The video was shot last month by film director Jody Hill, who is known for comedies like Eastbound and Down and Vice Principals. Lawrence said Audi has consistently used entertainment as part of the marketing strategy to tell stories about new vehicle launches and target individuals seeking progressive luxury.
Audi is targeting YouTube with this video, and the huge number of digital savvy consumers who watch and share video shorts.
“The largest generation in US history is known for their use of technology,” Lawrence said. “Showcasing Audi AI to a new generation is crucial. Audi AI represents future automated driving technology.”
Lawrence said the car brand has always looked at entertainment partnerships as an opportunity to communicate to an audience that cares about the latest and greatest in technology, design, and performance.
“Over the years, we’ve been able to work closely with casts and directors from our partners, bringing authenticity to anything we create,” Lawrence said. “From the Russo brothers directing an Audi short for Captain America to Tom in ‘Driver’s Test,’ we enter into any integration with the intent to create something that will excite the fans while sharing our latest models.”
Lawrence believes the brand has been able to create storytelling opportunities that connect with consumers.
“Whether it’s our trademark humor or making a statement, we find the right time and place to communicate something about what Audi stands for—in an entertaining way,” Lawrence said.