Blogs & Comment

The greatest nine-minute commercial ever made?

Ken Block serves up branded bliss for Ford, DC Shoes, Monster Energy and more with Gymkhana 4.

Action sports entrepreneur turned rally car wizard Ken Block returned to the web this week (now at Universal Studios) with the fourth installment of his jaw-dropping Gymkhana series.

The co-founder and chief brand officer of DC Shoes had some big … uh, driving slippers to fill after the success of the first three Gymkhana videos. The first, unveiled in 2008, was shot on what appears to be an abandoned desert airport and garnered more than 10 million views on YouTube. Part 2 was shot in the Port of Los Angeles and got more than 27 million views. Last year’s Part 3 took place at l’Autodrome de Linas-Montlhery south of Paris and racked up more than 34 million views. No wonder Block & Co. went the Michael Bay route with the latest chapter, complete with Jaws cam and zombies.

This is the second time Block’s videos have featured a Ford Fiesta (the first two videos featured a Subaru Impreza). Beyond the carmaker, that collage pattern of logos plastering the car and Block’s suit says there are plenty of marketers that see big value in taking the attitude of skateboard and snowboard videos to autosports. Branded content at its best. Also, ape on a Segway? Gold.