This Mind-Bending Ad for Kia Has Nearly 300 Million Views (and Counting)

It’s a major hit in India

One heck of a way to introduce a brand. - Credit by Kia India
Headshot of T.L. Stanley

Fantastic beasts and cool creatures (both natural and man-made) are introducing Kia to India in a way that old-school rubber-meets-the-road advertising could have never accomplished.

This anthemic spot, from Sideways Consulting, has logged 297 million global views in less than two months (230 million on YouTube alone), along with making a hit out of its quirky instrumental soundtrack (55,000 downloads). The massive audience represents one-third of internet users in the country.

Kia reports upwards of 6 million brand engagements and a flood of website traffic since debuting its ad stars, which include a Slinky-like toy, hummingbird, ballerina, astronaut, tiger, footballer, pencil-drawn Felix the cat come to life and a CGI swarm of fireflies. (There’s also a cameo by a sassy meerkat, who didn’t make the initial ensemble cast. Maybe next time?)

“Magical inspirations, stunning designs,” hyping the Kia SUV, has moved the needle in key measures, according to a YouTube BLS study, which shows ad recall is 36.2% and brand favorability stands at 15.4%.

In the first TV and digital campaign for its India launch, the brand meant to convey its aesthetics and establish its “emphasis on design and how it changes the design rule book with every car it introduces in the market,” says Manohar Bhat, head of sales and marketing, Kia Motors India. And the 60-second spot and its shorter teasers are “just the start of a slew of creative ads that we are yet to craft.”

The commercial itself is stunning, and the brand’s description downright lyrical, saying it combines “the enduring astronaut symbolizing man’s first step on the moon; the firefly representing the most luminescent form of nature; the slinky spring where science meets playfulness; the swift yet stable hummingbird; the ballerina with unmatchable precision, poise and grace; the agile skill and control of a footballer; quirk of Felix the cat and finally the tiger forms the most magical inspiration set leading to an amazing Kia car.”

Kia’s goals are lofty, as it “aspires to be the brand that owns the design space in India” and catapults itself into the top five car makers in the country in the next three years.

The automaker is building its first Indian manufacturing facility in the Anantapur district, expected to produce about 300,000 units a year (trial runs have already started).


Client: Kia Motors India – Innocean Worldwide India brand committee
Creative Consultant: Sideways Consulting
Director: Vijay Sawant
Production house: Hungry Films

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@TLStanleyLA T.L. Stanley is a senior editor at Adweek, where she specializes in consumer trends, cannabis marketing, meat alternatives, pop culture, challenger brands and creativity.