New York City is a vibrant, larger-than-life place, with Times Square as its dazzling, colorful heart. So it was an ideal setting for Honda to launch the all-new CR-Z hybrid coupe, using a variety of eye-popping spectacles designed to grab the attention of even the most jaded New Yorkers.
Honda setup what it called a "3D Playground" in Times Square, featuring an array of diversions designed to entice young buyers – the CR-Z's target audience. Interactive crowd-pullers included a racing simulator featuring PlayStation 3's Gran Turismo 5, photo booths with 3D backdrops, and screen-printed t-shirts.
But making a splash in the wild world of Times Square takes more than shirts, photo booths, and video games – and Honda didn't disappoint. Their star act was hip-hop group N.E.R.D., led by musician and producer Pharrell Williams – himself an automotive fanatic. R&B singer Ne-Yo later took the stage, as well. Bigger still was Times Square's first-ever 3D advertisement – viewable only after putting on a pair of complementary 3D glasses passed out by Honda representatives.
If passersby weren't totally mesmerized by the music, the advertising, and the games, there was one other focal point in Honda's 3D playground: the CR-Z itself. A few of the small coupes were on hand for people to peruse inside and out. A drive was out of the question, however – after all, most of Times Square is now closed to cars.
Clearly targeted at young buyers, the CR-Z appears on paper to have the right stuff to be a solid hit. It's sporty, fun, and innovative – a package rounded out by charming styling and competitive pricing. And giving away free t-shirts and an afternoon of video games and music certainly won't hurt the CR-Z's chances of finding legions of young fans.
Photos by Megan Green