Dodge Unveils Marketing, Advertising Campaign for All-New 2004 Durango

- Creative Focuses on the Vehicle's Duality: Refinement and Capability - Tagline Reinforces Product Attributes: 'Big size. Smooth Ride. HEMI(R) power.'

AUBURN HILLS, Mich., Oct. 22 -- When shopping for a new vehicle, men and women are often at odds about what features are most important. The all-new 2004 Dodge Durango bridges that gap by bringing those attributes together in a package that is the perfect combination of capability and refinement, a theme that is the foundation of a new advertising campaign unveiled today.

Throughout the integrated television, print, direct mail and web campaign, Dodge focuses on the features that make the Durango stand out in a growing market segment by positioning it as a vehicle that allows the optimum combination of utility, size and comfort with the power and performance of the legendary HEMI(R) engine.

"At approximately seven inches longer, three inches taller and three inches wider than the previous Durango, the 2004 Dodge Durango has the space and power of a large SUV with the drivability and price of a full-size SUV," said Julie Roehm, Director, Dodge Marketing Communications. "The marketing and advertising campaign highlights the Durango's unique position in the marketplace."

Television advertising will launch on October 26 on CBS's broadcast of NFL football with a 30-second tease spot called "Debate."

In "Debate," the viewer is first introduced to Joe and Liz, characters appearing throughout the campaign, who are debating the comfort and capability attributes of the new Durango. They each pointedly state that they've done their research and throw down catalogs for the new Durango. The debate is settled when Joe and Liz realize that they have been describing the exact same vehicle. "Debate" sets the foundation for the entire campaign -- that the all-new Dodge Durango offers all the refinement one would expect in an SUV with the unmatched capability of a HEMI engine, all in a perfect size.

On November 15, the new Durango will take to the airwaves in three general market spots, "Indoctrination," "Meat & Flowers," and "Perfect Day," plus one Hispanic and one urban spot, "Necklace" and "Poster," respectively. All will be heavily rotated through sports, primetime and late night programming on both broadcast and cable networks.

The tease, introductory and general market spots were all created by BBDO Detroit, the Chrysler Group's lead agency. The Hispanic and urban spots were created by the Chrysler Group's multicultural agency, GlobalHue.

"Indoctrination," the introductory spot, shows Joe and Liz discussing which vehicle attribute is more important -- comfort or capability -- as they pull away from a Dodge dealership in their new Durango with their toddler son in the backseat. Liz begins pointing out all of the comfort features of the new Durango to baby Joey. Joe catches on to the silly talk of comfort and, after pulling into the driveway, immediately grabs Joey, pops the hood, stating, "Son, there's the only thing you need to know," pointing to the HEMI engine.

In "Meat & Flowers," Liz is talking with her friends about how she convinced Joe to think of the family and the need for comfort and convenience when deciding on their new vehicle. At the same time, Joe is having a similar conversation while barbequing, but tells his friends that he insisted on having a "man's" vehicle. Joe claims that Liz finally saw it his way, but in reality they are both talking about the Durango, a vehicle that meets both of their needs. This spot continues the male capability-female refinement banter to drive home the duality message for the all-new Durango.

In "Perfect Day," Joe and Liz are in a counselor's office, who asks them to describe their perfect day. Liz talks about taking a leisurely ride with their kids, who are watching a DVD, and spending some quality time with the family. Joe, on the other hand, describes powering down the road towing a boat, then doing some fishing. The counselor tells them that even in fantasies their problem is that they're not traveling in the same vehicle. But when Joe and Liz return to the parking garage, there sits their all-new Durango, the perfect combination of comfort and capability.

In the "Necklace," which will run in both English and Spanish, a husband gives his wife a beautiful diamond necklace for their anniversary. As he's putting it around her neck, he mentions that he got himself a gift as well and points to the new Durango in the driveway. As the husband proudly extols the virtues of "his" new SUV such as the comfort and convenience features that he's sure his wife and family will enjoy, he also talks about the power and performance of the HEMI engine. As the vehicle is shown driving down the road, it's not the husband behind the wheel, but his wife, who has made the Durango her own. As she tells her husband how much she loves the new Durango, the camera pans over to the husband in the passenger seat, who is now wearing the beautiful diamond necklace.

In the urban spot, "Poster," two men are standing at the vertical stalls in a men's room. On the wall in front of them is a poster of the all-new Durango. The men begin talking about the vehicle's attributes, including the fact that it's now larger and more powerful than before. Their conversation is overheard by a man in a stall, who can't see the poster and assumes they are talking about something entirely different. As the men finish, one of them makes one last comment about the Durango, which prompts the man in the stall to open the door to finally find out what these guys have been talking about.

Although yet to air, "Poster" has received much publicity for what has been portrayed as "controversial" content.

"As part of the approval process, all ads are reviewed by Chrysler Group Senior Management as well as our dealers to ensure the appropriateness of the message, with the vast majority enthusiastically supporting this ad as well as the entire Durango campaign. 'Poster' has also been tested by Millward Brown Research and received a positive reaction from consumers," said Roehm. "Because of the nature of 'Poster,' the spot will not air during primetime network programming, but only on late night and cable."

In addition, Dodge has also extended the "Poster" creative into cinemas across the country, targeting more than 2,000 African American Consumer Market and Hispanic American Consumer Market theatres through a partnership with Screenvision. The ad will run before R-rated films during the strongest movie viewing time of the year -- from Thanksgiving through the New Year.

The general market print campaign will break first in USA Today on November 14 with a multi-page insert titled "His & Hers," featuring some of the things that make men and women different, like a dirty pair of work boots and neatly arranged dress shoes. The payoff comes at the end with a shot of the new Durango and the line, "Where Capability and Refinement Come Together," followed by specific information on the capability and refinement features of the vehicle.

The launch ad will be followed by a series of single page ads and spreads that educate the readers by highlighting key product attributes such as the HEMI power, refinement and size of the Durango. These ads will appear in such publications as Automobile, Car and Driver, Sports Illustrated, In Style, Newsweek, People and Men's Health.

Additionally, three multicultural print ads have been developed. The headline for the Hispanic ad reads "La Bella. La Bestia." or "The Beauty. The Beast." The two African American print headlines are "Ride Matters," a single page ad and "Size Does Matter," a spread. A poster version of "Size Does Matter" will run in restrooms in major sports stadiums, nightclubs and bars in the top 16 urban markets, focusing on the Durango's many product features.

Beyond traditional television and print advertising, Dodge will also feature Durango in two games. The first is the 2004 NHL Hitz Pro Console Game, currently in stores. The game leverages Dodge's partnership with the NHL by integrating the brand logo and voiceovers into the Jumbotron, under the ice and on dasher boards. The Durango is featured prominently in promotional in-store posters and Sunday papers through Toys R Us. The grand prize for the sweepstakes is an all-new 2004 Durango SLT.

The other game, debuting on November 15, is The Ultimate Dodge Garage, which focuses on the features and cargo capacity of the new Durango by participating in a variety of tasks.

Dodge is also extending its partnership with NTN Digital Interactive Television Network through the 2003 and 2004 season. The brand will sponsor QB1(R), NTN's Predict-The-Play(TM) football strategy game, the Dodge "Battle To The Bowl: III" trivia competition and the Dodge "Haul Of Fame" Advergame, featuring state-of-the-art 3D animation. The all-new 2004 Durango will be featured prominently in each of these. The NTN iTV Network delivers interactive game content to over 3,100 sports bars and restaurants across the country, reaching 1 million consumers daily.

Durango will also play a role in a variety of Dodge events taking place throughout 2004, including the Dodge Rodeo, NASCAR Weekly Racing Series, Breeders' Cup Powered by Dodge, Good Guys events and other shows targeting farming, construction, sports and outdoor.

Other communications elements include new content on dodge.com , which mirrors the duality theme established in the television and print campaigns by focusing on the new features of the Durango, an article on the capability and refinement of the new Durango in the Dodge Owners Magazine, a targeted direct mail piece and the development of outdoor boards for dealers.

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