Driven by optimism: Hyundai is driving cars through positive thought alone

Hyundai driving cars through positive thought alone

Hyundai UK has launched 'Driven by Optimism', a series of films that test whether or not it’s possible to drive the Hyundai i20 using the power of positive thought alone.

Hyundai believes in challenging convention for the sake of improvement at each step of the way – hence its ethos; 'new thinking, new possibilities'.

Creative agency Gravity Thinking, based in London, developed the concept of ‘Driven by Optimism’ in order to humanise the brand’s message of optimism and innovation for the consumer.

Working with technologists from The Alphabet Collective, the agency connected EEG headsets, which read the participants brainwaves, to custom built robotics that in turn applied pressure to the accelerator and brake of the i20 allowing the user to control the vehicle through the power of thought alone.

Electrodes in the EEG headset with interpreting software detected the participants’ positive thoughts, and electronics applied pressure on the accelerator through the use of actuators. In turn their neutral thoughts would activate the brakes.

The participants testing the campaign theory included members of Atlantic Endeavour – four young women who will attempt to be the first women’s four to cross the finish line in the 2016 Talisker Whisky Atlantic Challenge. They were joined by Mark Alcock, registered blind father of two who hadn’t driven a car for fifteen years prior to losing his vision and Life Coach, Anne Rae whose job includes harnessing the power of positive thought with her clients. All were selected due to their different needs to utilise positivity and optimism in their day-to-day lives for very different reasons.

The campaign launched on Wednesday 13 July is hosted on Hyundai’s YouTube channels and serialises the challenge through three films and behind the scenes content.

Adam Nickson, head of brand strategy and communications at Hyundai Motor UK said: "The 'Driven by Optimism' series perfectly reflects our brand ethos - blending the latest technology with the human spirit to challenge convention and keep pushing boundaries. The series shows exactly what extraordinary feats the human mind can achieve and using our three volunteers we truly show the power of positivity."

Martyn Gooding, creative director of Gravity Thinking, said: "To communicate Hyundai as the innovative company that it is, we want to position it as a beta brand. Collaborating with fresh talent, new technology, and pioneering thinkers are key ways to remain relevant in a crowded online space.

"The nature of social media has rendered the perception of true authenticity an important commodity. The stunt had to be done for real - and with real people. No computer graphics and no actors."

Gravity Thinking is a creative agency based in London, working with clients such as Hendricks, William Grant & Sons and Allianz UK.

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