Polestar’s minimalist approach to the Super Bowl takes a shot at Tesla

One of several EV ads to air on Sunday, the high-end entrant wants to stand out in the minds of sustainability-focused Canadians.


Minus the portentous voiceovers and sprawling vistas of a typical car ad, challenger electric vehicle maker Polestar is aiming to stand out with a very austere campaign.

The ad – created by Forsman & Bodenfors – is primarily text and music driven, with proclamations that it’s not compromising, greenwashing, taking shortcuts or conquering Mars, a not exactly subtle shot across the bow at rival and Tesla founder Elon Musk’s interstellar aspirations.

“We are a brand based out of a Nordic country, and we are about a way of life that’s minimalistic and purposeful,” says Sarah Beaumier, head of Polestar’s marketing in Canada. There’s no fluff, no extras, she says.

The EV brand’s first ever Super Bowl ad, Beaumier said, gave it a chance to establish itself with a strong value statement rather than being another EV brand. A 360-campaign following the Super Bowl is designed to drive traffic to the brand’s website, which is built around emphasizing that it’s a design company first and foremost, with a transparent, mission: wanting to make a carbon neutral car.

“We are at the point now, where we are established from a network perspective both in Canada and the U.S. and we are ready for people to come to us and to know us,” Beaumier says, admitting that while people may have heard of the brand, they might not know the latest models are actually available for sale domestically.

The Super Bowl ad is being followed up with a full-page ad in Monday’s Globe and Mail (pictured below) that elaborates on the message of the TV spot with more explicitly Canadian references. The TV spot will continue to air nationally in both English and French until April, along with social, digital display and online videos, with media handled by iProspect.

Outreach to Quebec was important, Beaumier says, with the ad airing in French on RDS to capitalize on the interest in buying EVs, in Quebec, according to KPMG.

The target market is people who know EVs and are in the market for them, and eventually it will include people with an appreciation for design sensibilities and a well put together vehicle.

The spot heroes the Polestar 2 model, which was launched in Canada in the fall of 2020 and as a car designed for Swedish winters, Beaumier says, and will appeal to a local audience as well

The company recently announced that it delivered on its global sales target of 29,000 vehicles in 2021, representing year-on-year growth exceeding 185%.