Tunbridge Wells

Unlocking a Honda audience: Are You Type R?


The Civic was Honda’s flagship vehicle, coming in many different variants and styles across Europe. However, Civic sales in Europe were in decline, Spontaneous Awareness was down, and overall Honda Brand Consideration was falling. Honda’s new Civic Type R model was due to launch and they saw this as an opportunity to re-invigorate the Civic and Honda brand, increasing consideration and prompt conversion amongst a new audience.


We used a number of consumer insight tools to help us find a consumer sweet spot, including our bespoke neuro-mapping methodology. Our tools include Global Web Index, WARC and Mintel, as well as our own desk research with Europe’s 5 core markets. Despite our target audience being generally broad in age, gender and media behaviours, their self-perceptions showed an unexpectedly high propensity for risk, ie: gambling, adventure, travel and sport, standing apart from the crowd, discovering new things and the idea that ‘with risk comes reward’. This attitude correlated with that of the Honda engineers who had to take massive risks to engineer this new Type R model. So we proposed that Type R is more than just a car - it’s a type of person. 

Solution: If You Never Try, Then You'll Never Know.

We wanted to create a call to action like no other. One that enticed this audience to take a test drive, but more than that, challenge them to take on a new and exciting experience. So we created a full, 360 campaign with the heading If You Never Try, You’ll Never Know, and the sign off Are You Type R? We then created Honda’s first ever influencer campaign, taking the best Type R social media stars from each core market and pitting them in a race of time and nerve, driving the new Type R.

Watch our case study film to learn more, and check out the results below!


Sales Vs KPI
Influencer Content Engagement
7 Million
Video Views

Our brand new Civic Type R is engineered to be the most engaging hot hatch on the market. Our primary goal was to create surprising and emotional content to illustrate Honda brand DNA through this iconic model. Southpaw succeeded in capturing the essence of Type R, and this campaign drove desirability and engagement for the Honda Civic range and the Honda brand.

Fabrice Esteve, Marketing Communications (Automobiles) Department Manager, Honda Motor Europe


Unlocking a Honda audience: Are You Type R?

Working to the insight that Type R is not just a car, it’s an attitude – a ‘Type’ of person who loves the notion that “with risk comes reward”. We developed a campaign called “Are You Type R?” including a range of filmic, print, social/digital assets, and exceeded the sales KPI.

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