We’re pretty happy whenever we see heritage acknowledged in a Nissan ad. It’s also pretty cool to to see the Z Proto driving along a track with an S30 Fairlady Z and a Z32. But with footage that looks like it’s from a video game and a voiceover that sounds like it was written by Yoda, there’s something off about the latest Nissan Z video.
The ad begins with a sunrise and a yellow S30 Fairlady Z in a warehouse. As it moves behind pillars, it turns into the Z Proto. Then, as the camera pans around the Proto, it suddenly transports to a test track and back. It’s a neat effect, even if it’s computer generated.
It’s not the only thing about the ad that falls into the uncanny valley. The narrator is trying to do his best Ian McKellen impression but the voice sounds unnaturally deep. And then there’s the words themselves.
It is a new day
Still the same sunrise, but something is different.
So much time has passed
With so many changes
But still running
Come on! This has the cadence and depth of bad beat poetry. We can only hope that something was lost in translation.
If there was any doubt that the video was CG, the camera pans up at the end to reveal that the track is a giant Nissan logo. That explains why it’s smooth as ice and the cars look like they’re just gliding along. Let’s get some suspension articulation up in here. At least the shades of yellow on the various Zs are actually different and proper.
It really feels like we’re piling on to this well-intentioned ad. Look, the cars are cool, the track is cool, and the premise is cool. It does stir excitement about the Z family line, which accomplishes its mission ultimately. Honestly, other recent Nissan ads have had more pizzazz. Maybe just watch this one with the sound off.