- Hyundai is advertising its latest Santa Fe SUV model with a campaign launching around the NFL conference championships Sunday, per a press release.
- Titled “Vikings,” the effort shows a Viking family as they drive around scenic landscapes and rough it in the woods, all set to Heart’s “Barracuda.” A phone call interrupts the fantasy and reveals the group are not actually warriors, but modern people roleplaying the early medieval lifestyle thanks to the Santa Fe.
- A 60-second spot kicks off the campaign, with Hyundai planning to run 60-, 30- and 15-second commercials supporting the Sante Fe throughout the year. Shorter ads will highlight specific vehicle features, such as all-wheel drive.
The Minnesota Vikings may be out of contention for the Super Bowl, but NFL fans will still get a dose of Norse-themed content ahead of the big game. Hyundai is rolling out the 2024 Santa Fe’s first national marketing blitz in time for the final round of playoff games this weekend with creative that shows how the vehicle lets people unleash their inner feral warrior (with the caveat that the illusion can be easily broken by a surprise call about work). Ads are set to the driving rhythm of Heart’s iconic “Barracuda,” a song that has a tenuous connection to Vikings but nevertheless might get pulses racing.
The Viking motif reinforces the Santa Fe’s positioning around off-road ruggedness, with the SUV having an RTX variant featuring larger tires and a raised suspension. Shorter 15-second ads will highlight additional perks, including rear cargo space, dual wireless charging and third-row seating. Hyundai’s “Vikings” covers broadcast, radio, social and digital channels, with agency Canvas coordinating media buys. Activations are in the works around future sporting events, according to the release.
“The Santa Fe is all about rugged adventure with smart innovations and convenient technologies,” said Angela Zepeda, chief marketing officer at Hyundai Motor America, in a statement. “We’re having a lot of fun with how this comes to life in our advertising campaign featuring a Viking family that we think will resonate with viewers during football’s championship weekend.”
The commercials set in pristine outdoor vistas were directed by Will Speck and Josh Gordon, known for their work on Geico’s Cavemen commercials (which are also back in the spotlight around Super Bowl LVIII). Hyundai’s agency of record Innocean USA handled the campaign, with an assist from production company Furlined.
Marketers have remained active around an NFL season that has seen ratings on the upswing, but the Super Bowl itself has a surprising absence of key car brands. Volkswagen, BMW, Kia and Kawasaki are the only automakers confirmed to have a presence at the game this year.