The world’s first Artificial Intelligence brain that translates abstract sounds into a virtual test drive.


UN: award, PW: show
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Volkswagen needed to launch the Golf R, its top performance model designed to bring back the fun in everyday driving. Our problem was that as we grow up, driving becomes more functional and less fun. So to launch it, we went back to when we had the most fun with cars – as kids, imagining ourselves as racecar drivers.

Introducing Unleash your Rrrr – make car sounds just like when you were a kid and the Golf R magically reacts. Make screeching sounds and the Golf R drifts. Roar and it accelerates. Every sound you unleash triggers a different maneuver. To pull this off, we built the world’s first Artificial Intelligence brain that translates human emotions and car sounds into a virtual test-drive.

Unleash Your Rrrr was the first campaign to harness the power of Artificial Intelligence and deep machine learning to create the next generation of personalized ads. It was experienced in over a hundred countries, featured in countless major publications, sold out our inventory in record time, and reminded people that everyday driving could be fun again.

To launch the campaign,
Police Academy’s Michael Winslow Vrooms like a pro.

To be the face of the campaign, we got the “king of sound effects,” Michael Winslow, and unleashed a cinematic trailer where Winslow powered the Golf R with his epic car sounds.

“Go ahead, make your favorite screeching sound. ”

— Fortune
“Volkswagen lets you control this car by making silly engine noises with your voice.”

— Business Insider
“You control this new VW ad by making your own ridiculous car noises.”

— Fast Company
“VW has launched a first-of-its-kind campaign that utilizes artificial intelligence to allow users to drive a virtual Golf R with the sound of their voice.”

— PSFK
“Volkswagen wants you to feel like a kid again.”

— Adweek
“The web app utilizes Deep Learning, an artificial intelligence subset of Machine Learning.”

— CampaignBriefAsia
“It’s a fun and innovative idea for an ad campaign.”

— The Next Web
“The More Ridiculous You Sound, the More Fun You'll Have.”

— Creativity
“New Volkswagen 'Unleash Your Rrrr' Campaign Allows Users to Drive a Virtual Golf R With Sound of Voice.”

— Yahoo
“You Will Embarrass Yourself Interacting With VW's Latest Digital Campaign.”

— Advertising Age
Not only did people find their inner Rrrr, but everyone got to share their own Golf R launch film. Every film was customized, featuring their own unique car sounds and car stunts.
What seemed like magic was actually the world’s first Artificial Intelligence brain that understands car sounds.

The AI brain could understand your own car sounds and find the exact clip to match. This marked a milestone in the artificial intelligence world. Previously, AI engines like Siri could only understand the human language. No tech could understand abstract sounds like car noises.

So we invented the world’s first AI brain that could. And this is how: Audio files are extracted from the user-generated video and split into individual sound bytes. That data was then fed into the AI "brain", pre-trained to recognize hundreds of audio samples.

Spectrograms allow the brain to visually determine which car sounds a user is making, and then assemble clips that perfectly match the sounds. To make each experience unique, we shot hundreds of clips with millions of possible combinations.

1. Make your best car sounds.

2. The AI brain detects your sounds.

3. The Golf R magically reacts.

Universal Language of PerfoRrrrmance

It didn’t matter if you spoke English, German or Japanese, people everywhere could unleash their Rrrr in one universal language. The language of performance.

We launched a social media campaign to get everyone revved up.

We partnered with Top Gear host and Fast and the Furious stunt driver Tanner Foust. To leverage his fan baseof hundreds of thousands of car enthusiasts, we launched the campaign by hijacking his own Twitter account, introducing Rrrrrrrrr online. Then we launched a video of Foust vrooming like the pro racecar driver that he is.

people’s replies

@mssrfcali Twitter hack or @TannerFoust can't shift properly LOL I wonder what car he's in?

@98SUPRALover '-' why u doing this?

@d_philipsen are you okay, Tanner?

@OmarSAlHuwaidi naaaan naaaaaaaan naaaaan nnaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaan !!

@Briana Gypsum Rrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr

‏@mike_913 your key is stuck

@Otis_271 shifting points are off.

people’s replies

@sasquatch856 developed a speech impediment?

@bentleyblock whats is this? Hahaahahaha

@BGypsum Like a dinosaur Rrrr, or like I car, vroom vroom? Lol

‏@Animesh_marc starting sound of engine

@BGypsum Okay, I think you are just trying to mess with us, is that true?

@crazygirl1079 What happend? Is your ca broken?

@CoyIssa fun day?

people’s replies

@Anna_Doo_ that was great!!

@JayPiamonte I get now. Make the car sounds, we make the video VW ad campaign!!

@MaydaO some of your best work haha, love it!!

@Imzsuzsi RRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRR

‏@JoySvoboda34 that can't be good or can it hmm!! Lol

@DeviousDeep what does a car sound like when it's drifting???

@SleepingGiant90 vrrrr-ooooooooooooooooooorrrroo-rorororororrrrrmrmrmrmrororororor

Rich media takeovers featuring Winslow
and Tanner Foust challenged everyone to Unleash their Rrrr.