Toyota Motor Corporation's heritage with building sports cars dates back to 1965 with the Sports 800 followed by Japan's first "super car," the 2000GT, and the iconic AE86. Toyota 86, launched in January 2012, builds on the company's sports car legacy with a front-engine, rear-wheel drive layout designed to bring back the sheer exhilaration of sports car driving.
For the Middle East market, Toyota sought forward-thinking marketing promotions to accelerate interest in the 86 while enabling consumers to enjoy the look, feel and driving experience first-hand. The carmaker also wanted to reach a young, adventure-seeking demographic which Toyota had not targeted since the phase-out of their Celica and Supra sport models.
Toyota enlisted Drive Dentsu, a global leader in automotive marketing and communications, to help accomplish this objective. Instead of relying on traditional advertising methods, Drive Dentsu embraced mobile experiential technology to help Toyota meet its marketing objectives, including:
- Create immediate buzz about their latest car
- Attract a young, thrill-seeking demographic to its tested and trusted brand
- Deliver a realistic, thrilling virtual driving experience
To target the young, adventure-seeking demographic segment, Drive Dentsu in Dubai conceptualized and launched the "Made to Thrill" advertising campaign. The Toyota 86 AR mobile app for iOS and Android was one of the core elements of this campaign. Developed by Fuerte International in London, the app used the Vuforia™ mobile vision platform to push the technological boundaries of what had previously been seen on mobile devices in this region.
The app simulated test-drives to help consumers feel and experience everything the new Toyota 86 embodies. Using smartphones and tablets, consumers could activate the app from posters at shopping malls and trendy hangouts, and as the app gained online momentum, they could also print their own posters from the toyota86ar.com website.
Consumers were also encouraged to create their own Toyota 86 movies using the app and upload them to YouTube. To further increase the buzz Drive Dentsu also created the worlds largest augmented reality car near the world's tallest building the Burj Khalifa, Dubai.
In the first 10 days following its launch, the Toyota 86 AR app reached 70,000+ downloads and is now well over 750,000+ downloads on iOS and Android platforms with 250,000+ combined YouTube views for videos related to the app.
The Toyota 86 AR app also won 2 x Silvers at the Dubai Lynx 2013 and an Emerald Cristal at the MENA Cristal 2013 advertising industry awards.