Cats hate being packed up in crates and dragged to the vet. But maybe they’ll relent—hell, maybe they’ll start to enjoy it—if you drive them there in a Toyota Corolla.
That’s the premise of this amusing new 90-second spot from Toyota New Zealand (via Saatchi & Saatchi in Auckland) starring an exceedingly furry feline who enjoys his time in the Corolla so much that he begins to orchestrate accidents that force ever more visits to the animal hospital. The first injury, a broken leg, may very well be unanticipated. But once exposed to the luxurious interior of the 2013 Corolla, the cat is hooked—purring ferociously and already planning his next trip. He subsequently negotiates run-ins with a lawnmower, a cement mixer, a neighbor’s Great Dane, and several other potentially lethal adversaries. Eventually, he appears to take things too far—allowing himself to be swallowed whole by a street sweeper. (Sooner or later, every junkie hits rock bottom.) But even this proves not to be the end of our hero, who evidently has been graced with more than the usual nine lives.
Save for a few beauty shots, and a cursory pan of the interior, the spot says almost nothing about the product—insert any other car, and you’ve got an identical commercial. Even the tagline, “Feels good inside,” is exceedingly vague. Still, with its purely viral backbone—cats and slapstick violence can’t lose—this kind of storytelling will get plenty of exposure for the brand, while also lending it a playful air.
But kitties—don’t try this at home.