As a marketing designer, I actually do look at the ads when they show up on TV. Not because I want to be sold a product, but because I love studying the ads to see which ones I feel are successful and which fall short.

Honda has recently launched a new ad for the Honda Accord. The ad shows numerous every day scenarios where the many advanced features of the Honda Accord will help you—from leaving an item on top of the car while driving to switching lanes on the freeway.

In my opinion, this is a brilliant ad. What makes it so great?

a) The music (“Dark Parts” by Perfume Genius) is both catchy and moving. If an ad has music good enough for me to search out the song and musician—that’s a good sign.

b) You can relate to it easily and immediately. Every advanced feature isn’t shown off as in “Look what we have”, but is instead directly connected to things you run into every day. Thus the benefit—rather than the product—is being shown.

c) The cinematography is beautiful and the special effects are subtle if not almost invisible. The birds flying toward camera at 0:39, even if not seamlessly integrated, are both beautiful and poetic.

All in all, the whole ad is understated. It doesn’t overwhelm you. It gently tells you that this is a car built for you. And by the end of it, I thought to myself that, when I get a car for my wife, it will probably be a Honda Accord.

Well played, Honda. Well played.