Volvo Trucks Found an Unlikely Hero for Its Gilded New Commercial

Why Bob's rig is made of gold

Meet Bob. He's a "biddy-biddy rich, daidle deedle daidle daidle man." 

Accompanied by an updated version of "If I Were a Rich Man" from Fiddler on the Roof, Bob tools around the highways of Western America in a 70-foot Volvo VNL 760 rig made of gold. 

In his business suit and baseball cap, he enjoys preferred seating and a flambeed lunch at the greasy spoon while the locals look on in awe. Later, it's four barbers (no waiting), for a massage, manicure and tiny cups of tea. 

Even his bowling ball is gold. 

So, how does Bob fuel his luxe lifestyle? In the short film below from Swedish agency Forsman & Bodenfors, we learn that Volvo Trucks' new turbo compounding engine, which improves yield by 3 percent over its pervious engine and saves drivers thousand of dollars per year, helped put him on Easy Street.

Do they even allow rigs that big on Easy Street? Ah well, Bob can afford the fine.

That clip of banknotes in a men's-room stall that's run out of T.P. was a rad touch. (Now, that's something you can't do with crypto!) 

"The brief asked us to find a creative way to launch a very specific fuel-saving feature on Volvo's trucks in North America," agency creative Lars Elfman tells Muse. "I think it was 6 in the morning when I came up with the idea of the truck being a literal cash machine, and then I remembered the song, 'If I Were a Rich Man' and thought, 'What if we have a truck driver that now can live his dream?'"

Of course, Volvo's truck division has long set the category's gold standard for creative marketing. 

"The Epic Split" with Jean-Claude Van Damme from 2013 was an award-winning, pop-culture sensation, generating more than 100 million views worldwide. Two years ago, "The World's Largest Unboxing" set a Guinness World Record. (For the world's largest unboxing. Really.) 

"The Cash Machine" may not dazzle like those two earlier classics from Forsman & Bodenfors, but director Tomas Skoging's brisk comedy pacing really shines. The reworked Broadway tune, from producer Jonas Quant and singer Joseph Peter de Natale, will worm-wiggle into your ears and stay there all day, while Walter Samuel's earthy, laid-back portrayal of Bob rates 24 karats. (And he never speaks a word. Guess his money does the talking.) 

"He made Bob into a charming, likable person with the perfect look," says Elfman. "A big part of the end result is thanks to him." 

"Cash Machine" is a "kind of celebration of all truck drivers," he adds. "They do an important job and deserve credit for working hard, so more of them should be able to live a life like Bob. Volvo Trucks always takes the driver's perspective in everything they do, and I hope those watching the campaign can feel that."

CREDITS

Client: Volvo Trucks North America
Advertisers Supervisor: Rick Giamportone, Will Bender, Fredrik Klevenfeldt
Title: Volvo Trucks – The Cash Machine featuring Bob
Creative Agency: Forsman & Bodenfors
Account Director: Cilla Pegelow
Account Manager: Helena Lignell
Creatives: Kim Cramer, Lars Elfman, Björn Engström, Stefan Thomson, Mattias Berg
Designer: Jerry Wass, Milly Björkman
Brand Strategist/Planner: Daniel Sjöstrand
PR Strategist: Bjarne Darwall
Digital Strategist: Peter Gaudiano
Agency Film Producer: Lena Sellman
Production company: The Producers
Director: Tomas Skoging
Producer: Mats Wolgers
DoP: Adam Frisch
Editor: Henning Mark
Post production: Swiss
Sound mix: Plop
Service production: Wonderful Content
Line Producer: Michel Sassoon
Art directions: Peter van Vliet
Wardrobe Stylist: Paula Rogers
Music supervisor/production: Music Super Circus/Woah Dad, Jonas Quant
Media agency: Verizon Media
Still photo BTS: Patrick Daly

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David Gianatasio
David Gianatasio is senior editor at Clio Awards.

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