The 1985 ad campaigns for the Toyota MR2 in Japan and the U.S. could be best summed up with, “know you’re audience.”
American drivers were all about fun and mustaches. They still are, but that was especially true in the ’80s. Naturally, Toyota sought to capitalize on every male’s desire to become Burt Reynolds by dropping a mustachioed driver with a Toyota MR2 in a giant pinball machine. Because if there are two things that are vital to know about the American car market, they are style and pinball.
And in case you’re wondering what was going on across the Pacific in the Japanese ad market, the MR2 was being heralded as providing, “the most innovatory value.” Watch the above video and you’ll notice a few things that stand out. There’s a surprising lack of pinball for a car commercial, and the car doesn’t jump, not even once!