While the spots have been nothing if say, unconventional, the Lincoln ads featuring Matthew McConaughey have been unmitigated hits. After his initial efforts—featuring the MKC crossover—began airing in 2014, sales spiked dramatically, and now, the lanky Texan who turned “alright, alright, alright” into an internationally known synonym for himself is back in a new pitch for the 2018 Lincoln Navigator.
As expected, it’s about as straightforward as a curveball in the dark. The Academy Award-winning actor has no dialog, there’s no description of the luxury SUV’s luxurious appointments, and the cinematography provides better shots of a passing train than the Navigator’s sheet metal. What it does feature is McConaughey drumming on the steering wheel, which is either a pretty egregious creative oversight, or a direct reference to his much-publicized 1999 arrest for disturbing the peace, where bongos featured prominently. Regardless, it works.
The McConaughey spots are actually a great lesson for a lot of automakers, who are often so afraid of causing a controversy, they don’t push the limits enough. That said? You can only imagine the reaction of some Lincoln executives when they started seeing—universally hilarious— parodies of the initial ads from folks like Ellen DeGeneres, Conan O’Brien, and Jim Carrey. We bet there were some panicked calls to the Hudson Rouge agency about exactly what the heck they were thinking when they dreamed them up.
But as we mentioned previously, Lincoln sales went through the roof, and gave the brand a boost it hadn’t seen in decades.
To be honest, we think it worked almost as well as our brand-reboot strategy would have. For anyone who’s curious—and we know you are—that strategy was fairly simple. First? Make a Continental with the lines of the iconic 1966 model, complete with suicide doors, and give them to Snoop Dog and other tastemakers. Trust us, Lincoln wouldn’t be able to keep up with demand.
Watch the video below, and for a more detailed look at the 2018 Lincoln Navigator, head to your local AutoNation Lincoln dealer.