Toyota 4Runner Reaches Heights With Everest Tie-In

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Toyota Motor Sales announced yesterday the launch of an integrated marketing campaign to introduce the 2003 4Runner, which arrives in dealerships Oct. 15.


The star of the effort, along with the 4Runner, is Mount Everest. Photography and video were filmed at the 17,262-foot-elevation base camp to the summit of Mount Everest. It took four days to reach the base camp in the 4Runner, and the journey will be used in the print, broadcast, interactive and outdoor advertising campaign.


The print element will have shots of the 4Runner climbing Everest. National and regional newspaper ads break in October, including an Oct. 25 spread in USA Today and November issues of consumer and enthusiast magazines such as Automobile, Backpacker, Autoweek, Car & Driver, Cycle World, Fortune, Men's Health, Motor Trend, National Geographic, National Geographic Adventure, People, Runner's World, Road & Track, Sport Truck, Sports Illustrated, Time, Truck Trend and 4-Wheel and Off-Road.


The outdoor effort opens Oct. 15 with boards across the country, including a video board in Times Square.


Toyota also will have prominent placement in the weather category through an exclusive sponsorship of snow reports on Mobliss wireless alerts and sites such as weather.com, accuweather.com and weatherbug.com.


On toyota.com, consumers will be able to access a three-dimensional technology module showing 4Runner's technology features. A destinations section will feature 50 off-road adventures. Each month, a well-known adventurer will take the 4Runner to a featured location and offer readers tips and advice on planning their own adventure.


One 60-second and three 30-second broadcast spots are scheduled to premiere in October.


Toyota also is partnering with Outdoor Life Network, which will produce a made-for-TV program, "Global Extremes: Mount Everest -- 4Runners of Adventure."


The "Global Extremes" competition will challenge teams of amateur athletes in a series of elimination events in places such as Moab, UT; Elk Mountain, CO; and Kalahari, South Africa. The challenges will eliminate all but five competitors, who then will attempt an ascent on Mount Everest, which will be televised live. The teams will pursue challenges while the 4Runner will play a role in each individual expedition.


"Global Extremes" will appear on Outdoor Life Network and ABC. The ascent on Mount Everest will air live on OLN.


Toyota will begin an interactive campaign with Yahoo to generate exposure for the OLN "Global Extremes" program. The Web site yahoo.com/globalextremes will include athlete profiles, competition updates and video highlights allowing users to track each step of the athletes' journeys on the site and wireless phones.


Saatchi & Saatchi, Los Angeles, developed the campaign.


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