Toyota GT86 advert: behind the scenes

Want to know how the makers of our new Toyota GT86 TV advert set about capturing our hero’s escape? You’ll find the answer, below.

When Toyota asked advertising agency Saatchi & Saatchi to devise a suitable debut for the GT86, the result was a commercial six months in the making.

Described as ‘a mash-up between The Truman Show and Blade Runner’, the story goes like this: a man drives the GT86 to escape from a mundane, computer-generated existence into a new, more tactile world, with hints of being chased by killjoy authorities as he goes.

Saatchi & Saatchi ad man Ben Wilkinson explains: ‘Rather than the promise of freedom that cars once had, they have become a means of getting from A to B. Our aim for the GT86 ad was to recapture that sense of escape.’

Award-winning director Adam Berg shot the commercial on location in Barcelona, while the effects came from Los Angeles – based Digital Domain, the animation company behind some of the scenes in the Transformers movie franchise.

‘We used real actors for all the scenes and the driving shots,’ adds producer Ben Croker. ‘A studio filled with 150 cameras captured every movement, and tiny cameras mounted on the main actor caught the movement and expressions of his face.

His body was scanned using imaging technology to give us a computer-generated hero that walked, moved and talked just like the real guy.

‘Our man was then composited into the real car so it looks like he is driving it throughout the ad. We then had to lift the car from the real environment and place it in our computer world. Simple.’

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  1. Hi there, just wondering where you got the line in the advert ‘just me, the car, the road’ from? As this was the line I entered as my answer into your drive a GT86 at Goodwood festival of speed moving motor show….never heard a bean back from you. Would have been nice to hear that it was to be used in the ad and that was all.

  2. Hi Edd,
    Thanks for getting in touch and we are sorry to hear you were not successful for the Goodwood competition, unfortunately due to the high volume of entries received; we were only able to get back to the winning entrants. Regarding the script for our GT86 ad, this was written by our creative agency, Saatchi&Saatchi, and was approved before the ad went into production at the end of April; the Goodwood competition subsequently ran in May when we received your entry towards the end of the month.
    Thanks again for your comments.

  3. Is there a more detailed making of available anywhere? I love this advert and mocap is something im very interested in.

    Ive just graduated in computing design so would like to see some more for this making of.

    1. Hi Scott,
      Thanks for your post; we’re so pleased you’re enjoying the advert!
      This is the only ‘behind the scenes’ post planned, we unfortunately do not have anything further available on this project – sorry!
      Thanks for your interest.

    1. Hi Tyrone, thanks for your comment.

      It’s great to hear that you are interested in the GT86, however we no longer manufacture this vehicle. Not to worry though as you’ll find plenty of approved used options here:


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