Nissan Qashqai

Car Games Experiential Campaign

Case Study


In late 2006, TBWA London created a fictional underground game called Qashqai Car Games. This was used as the tease for the above the line launch campaign for the new Nissan Qashqai and to amplify its ‘UrbanProof’ strategy.


As Nissan’s experiential agency, CUNNING was briefed by Nissan to bring Car Games to life in the real world. It was also CUNNING’s job to generate hype around the whole launch targeting urban, design-conscious professionals.


Whether our cities are becoming more hostile environments or not is a moot point. Perception is everything, and people perceive the urban landscape as more dangerous than ever. However, playing solely on people’s fears is not a new device. It’s far better to find a positive spin on ‘robustness’ on our city streets. So, although part of Qashqai’s positioning was based around protection in the concrete jungle, CUNNING emphasized its fun, dynamic quality.

CUNNING created a series of underground activities to bring to life ‘Qashqai Car Games’, where drivers apparently perform stunts in Nissan Qashqais.

But the work wasn’t underground for underground’s sake. CUNNING considered that this approach far more in keeping with the ‘UrbanProof’ strategy than traditional TV and poster work and the media spend at launch was heavily balanced in this direction.

In the weeks preceding the launch, CUNNING built and branded a huge half-pipe ramp which toured a series of cities nationwide, with two fully modified Qashqais, souped-up to appear as if en route to or from the games.

In the subsequent weeks, after the vehicles had passed through town, a print campaign was activated. Predated fly posters advertising the Qashqai Car Games were put up and lo-fi fanzines were left in hundreds of stores and bars for people to discover.

We also introduced ‘Qashqai Stalls’ to some of the country’s highest profile street markets (for example Portobello and Spitalfields in London). Enthusiastic Qashqai Car Games fans were in charge, selling specifically designed and highly sought after Qashqai merchandise and promoting the Qashqai Car Games. Proceeds from sales were given to charity. Memorabilia was also sold off on an eBay auction by spoof Car Games fans.


Truck Convoy: 2,061,389
Cars: 1,632,167
Fanzines: 53,240
Market Stalls: 22,500
TOTAL IMPACTS: 3,769,296

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