Say or believe what you will about Toyota Priuses, they sure are polarizing. They're a lightning rod for people's feelings and beliefs about fuel economy, imported cars, energy independence, climate change, the fate of the planet ... and the list goes on.
Now you can watch 10 outrageous ads for the Toyota Prius and interpret your own personal Rorschach test. Is the Prius a symbol of caring for the planet? An anti-chick-magnet? A hatchback that makes it easy to dump that dead body in the lake?
The fun part is to watch the videos and scan the images without reading the captions first, and decide for yourself whether you think the ad is real or a spoof. A couple of the results may surprise you.
The HybridCars.com website has often covered the cultural implications of ... well ... hybrid cars. Obviously the Prius carries the brunt of the burden for hybrids as a group. I mean, it wasn't a Honda Civic Hybrid spoofed by South Park in an episode called "Smug Alert" (which
, sadly, "...is no longer available [on YouTube] due to a copyright claim by Viacom International Inc.").
Our sister site TheCarConnection commented on perceptions of Prius owners when it reported on a study calling them "imaginative, intellectually curious and emotionally sensitive." In fact, TCC downright sneered at the notion that Prius owners might be "less dogmatic" than others. Well, open to new ideas, for sure. (Hey, at least that study trying to show that a Hummer is greener than a Prius has been debunked.)
Luckily, there's plenty of data on hybrid owners to characterize them sans sneers. And if you read it, well .... it's no coincidence that they're a desirable group for marketers to target.