Mike Rowe continues his Dirty Job of shilling for Ford trucks in the newest ad from FoMoCo, which we think may be called "This Is Bill." Whatevs, it's actually a fairly entertaining ad talking up the NHTSA crash test ratings of the new F-150 and the truck's five-star crash rating. Not that they're picking on the recent not-so-great crash test ratings of one automaker's new hauler in particular, right? I mean, they're probably just sayin'... Anyway, full press release from FoMoCo after the jump.


* Mike Rowe, host of Discovery Channel's "Dirty Jobs," stars in two new Ford F-150 ads showcasing the truck's continuing leadership in safety, strength and capability.
* New ads also feature two Ford engineers who put the Ford F-150 to the test every day.
* This under-the-skin look at F-150's strengths reflects Ford's "Truth About Trucks" efforts and "Built Ford Tough" product promise.
* The ads continue Ford's "Challenge" campaign, which showcases how Ford vehicles top the competition.

DEARBORN, Mich., May 1, 2007 - To illustrate the 2007 Ford F-150's continued leadership in safety, strength and capability, Ford picks apart its half-ton competition in two new ads starring Mike Rowe, creator and star of Discovery Channel's hit show, "Dirty Jobs." In this second round of Ford F-150 ads since January 2007, Rowe is joined by two hard-working Ford truck engineers as they highlight the F-150's superior features.

"The Ford F-150 is built consistently with better parts that give it more strength and capability to help customers get more work done," says Barry Engle, general manager, Ford Division Marketing. "That's how you build 30 years of truck leadership."

In the first ad, Rowe and Paul Angove, a Ford truck suspension engineer, review leaf spring bolts used by Ford and four key truck competitors. Angove highlights how the Ford F-150's bolts are the biggest and strongest. Since these bolts take on some of the heaviest suspension loads, they are key in making the 2007 Ford F-150 the strongest, most capable truck in its class.

In the second ad, Rowe and Bill McDonald, a supervisor in Ford's crash barrier facility, watch an F-150 in a dramatic crash test. McDonald, a 29-year Ford veteran, shares with Rowe that the 2007 F-150 received the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration's (NHTSA's) highest safety rating (five stars) for driver and front passenger, a rating some top truck competitors have not earned.

The safety ad begins airing on national television on May 1, followed shortly afterwards by the leaf-spring bolt spot. The ads will be accompanied by similar print and online ads.

'Truth About Trucks'

The ads were inspired by a "Truth About Trucks" campaign Ford launched in 2003 to enumerate the F-150's lengthy list of under-the-skin advantages versus competitors. The campaign in broadcast, print and point-of-purchase advertisements has communicated to customers that F-Series trucks are stronger and more capable than competitors with the straightforward "Built Ford Tough" product promise. This consistent message enjoys decades of brand equity, nearly matching Ford's truck leadership for an unprecedented 30 consecutive years.

The new ads starring Mike Rowe, as well as other print and online communications, will reinforce these under-the-skin advantages that continue to make the 2007 Ford F-150 the leader. Ford dealers also are capitalizing on the F-150's leadership story by distributing it to sales consultants through videos that detail the truck's numerous advantages.

"Ford Challenge" Drives Sales Results

Similarly, in January Ford kicked off its "Ford Challenge" effort, an advertising platform designed to clearly demonstrate how Ford products beat the competition in head-to-head comparisons. The campaign started with the "Fusion Challenge," and then quickly extended to the F-150 and Expedition EL.

"We have the strongest Ford lineup ever," says Engle. "The 'Ford Challenge' confidently communicates this great story with products such as the Ford F-150 that show how the best-selling products beat their competitors in areas that matter most."

According to internal Ford data, the campaign has generated significant customer response in terms of product favorability, purchase consideration and, ultimately, sales.

* The "Fusion Challenge" helped the Ford Fusion post a 22 percent in increase through April 2007. The ads were based on two consumer events held with subscribers of Car and Driver and Road & Track magazines, where the Fusion V-6 all-wheel drive ranked ahead of the Honda Accord and Toyota Camry V-6.
* Ford Expedition sales have increased year-over-year eight months in a row One of the Expedition "Challenge" ads pokes fun at a rival's third-row seat, which requires customers to remove it from the vehicle for maximum cargo space. Expedition owners simply press a button to electronically fold the third row flat.
* Through April, the Ford F-Series continued its 30-year run as the industry's sales leader. The first Ford F-150 ads starring Rowe highlighted the truck's leading payload and towing capabilities. In one spot, Rowe walks away from two competitive trucks that are both hitched to one 11,000-pound trailer and says, "If you need to tow 11,000 pounds, you'll need two trucks. Unless you're Joe. Joe owns a Ford F-150." The ad goes onto to describe how the truck's unique fully boxed frame delivers the unmatched towing capacity in the half-ton pickup segment.

F-Series: The Industry's Leader
Since its debut in 1948, Ford has sold more than 32 million F-Series trucks around the world. Today, there are more F-Series pickups on the road with 250,000 miles than any other brand. It has also been the best-selling truck in America for 30 consecutive years and the best-selling vehicle for 25 years in a row.

The Ford F-150 half-ton pickup is the strongest half-ton truck with best-in-class payload and towing capacities. New for the 2007 model, Ford added to an unmatched lineup of more than 60 unique F-Series offerings with new F-150 FX2 Sport and Harley-Davidson SuperCrew models.

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