chevrolet_ns_“Chevy runs deep” was always more of a tactical tagline to mark the brand’s centennial (it turned 100 in 2011), designed to tug at the nostalgic heart strings of American consumers. There is no doubt that the brand is a cultural mainstay in the US, immortalized in pop culture from west coast to east, but the line never had the legs to become a brand slogan – and certainly not a global one – with an eye to a very different 100 years to come. The line was difficult to translate and its meaning impossible, given the lack of heritage in many of its markets. It was at least anchored on the brand name, a definite plus.

As with Ford’s recently introduced “Go Further” slogan, Chevy’s new line – “Find new roads” – has the benefit of acting as a rallying call within its internal branding program. Both “Chevy runs deep” and “Find new roads” are very evocative lines, suggesting a vivid brand narrative. In the latter case, the brand challenge will be to “own” that narrative in the years to come. Both Ford’s and Chevrolet’s slogans sound somewhat generic alongside my favorite “Imported from Detroit” (from Chrysler), which helped turn that brand round.