Automaker ads are among YouTube's most watched videos

December 18, 2012 12:00 AM

Automobile manufacturers came out with some catchy commercials in 2012, and eight of those managed to land in the top 20 most watched ads on YouTube. AdWeek composed the list of the most popular branded commercials and found several car clips on the list, with Volkswagen and Honda leading the way.

Volkswagen's two "Star Wars" themed commercials landed at third and sixth, with "The Bark Side" racking up more than 17.7 million views and "The Dog Strikes Back" ending the year with just over 16 million. Honda's ad, "Matthew's Day Off," featured Matthew Broderick reprising his famous role as Ferris Bueller, garnered 16.2 million views to land in fifth place.

Chrysler's "Halftime in America" commercial, which had Clint Eastwood narrating an extended ad that was also considered by the news source to be among the best of the year, ended 2012 in eighth place with 11.2 million views. Audi of America's "Vampire Party" and Chevrolet's "2012" landed in 10th and 11th, respectively, as each was watched more than 7 million times.

Rounding out the top auto commercials was Toyota's "It's Reinvented," coming in at number 16, and Fiat's "House Arrest," which clocked in at 18th. The Fiat ad was the lone commercial that didn't air during the Super Bowl, instead debuting later in the year and featuring a self-mocking Charlie Sheen.

According to In Auto News, when AdWeek did its mid-year review of the top commercials in July, the auto industry had six of the top 20. In the next five months, the sector managed to add two more ads into the mix, meaning that all of the millions of dollars brands are investing in marketing - more than any other industry in the nation, according to The Car Connection - may be paying off. It also raises the stakes for the upcoming Super Bowl, which will have several automakers returning to the primetime slot after bypassing the sporting event in recent years.

All of the auto ads trailed Nike and Pepsi, which managed to finish in the top two spots, but the mix of celebrity cameos and clever marketing gave the auto industry a strong showing the top 20, AdWeek reports. The top ads also boasted a blend of comedy and drama, but most bypassed things like car repair in favor of more engaging storylines. 

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