It opens on a beautiful day in a small country town; the farmer is loading provisions onto the back of his Hilux – alone. He's very strong and tough but, in old khaki and with a ratty beard and unkempt hair, not quite the vision of a young girl's dreams. So, when she strolls passed in the company of her mother, she ignores his salutation and rolls her eyes in dismissal.
But, the farmer is as clever as he is strong; he glances at his reflection in the Hilux windows and realises he'll have to improve his image if he wants to win her over. In quick succession, he has his hair washed and cut, his beard shaved, his nose hair plucked (ouch, but he's tough), and purchases a nose-wrinkling after-shave. Finally, he emerges from the male outfitters resplendent in new cream chinos and baby pink shirt with an even paler pink jersey slung about his shoulders.
Unfortunately, his hard-working Toyota Hilux is far from impressed, believes that his hard-working owner has gone ‘soft' on him and refuses to open its doors to let the wannabe Lothario into its cab. As the screen fades to reveal the title wording ‘The Toyota Hilux... doesn't do soft', he mutters to the vehicle in frustration ‘Come on, it's still me.'
According to Thulo, the brief was to create a commercial that that would further entrench the Toyota Hilux positioning of ‘beyond tough'.
“Our challenge was to communicate toughness, but in an unexpected way. So, we decided that the Toyota Hilux is so tough, it would reject anything that isn't equally so. This gave rise to the tagline ‘Toyota Hilux... doesn't do soft', he said.
“We're sure this is going to be a firm favourite amongst the Toyota Hilux target group, not only because it strikes a fine balance between caricature and real-life, it portrays the vehicle as having its own personality. And, as everyone who has owned a Hilux knows, every Hilux has a personality of its own, and they could imagine their Hilux doing something like this to them!”