American Marketer


Jaguar highlights British heritage with Wimbledon partnership

April 22, 2015

Jaguar at Wimbledon Jaguar at Wimbledon


British automaker Jaguar Land Rover is looking to enhance the experience of tennis enthusiasts as the official car of the Wimbledon Championships June 29 to July 12.

Jaguar will be supplying 170 vehicles to support tournament operations, which will be highly visible during the event. The brand will also unveil digital components in the weeks ahead.

"Wimbledon is the pinnacle of sports," said Laura Schwab, U.K. marketing director at Jaguar Land Rover, London.

"Tennis already really resonates with [our customers], and Wimbledon gives us a chance to talk to a whole new audience," she said.

Down the line

More so than other sports, the location of a tennis match matters significantly. Clay, hard, indoor and other surfaces impact how the ball carries and can disrupt a player's rhythms.

The rivalry between tennis stars Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer often came down to the surface of the court, as Mr. Nadal lacerated Mr. Federer whenever on his familiar clay.

Consequently, each tournament's location takes on a distinct identity and is cast as capable of yielding unpredictable outcomes.

Wimbledon is the oldest tennis tournament in the world and is considered by many as the most prestigious. The courts at the All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club have grass surfaces, making Wimbledon the only tournament in the world played on grass.


Wimbledon court

The tournament's iconic status will make Jaguar's 170 cars highly visible to high-net-worth consumers in attendance.

As a quintessential event in Britain, Jaguar also benefits by amplifying its own heritage.

Jaguar tapped José Mourinho, the general manager of the football club Chelsea, to narrate a branded video announcing the partnership. The brand selected Mr. Mourinho because he is a brand ambassador and also because he had never been to Wimbledon previously, so the enthusiasm he shows is genuine.

In the video, footage of celebrated Wimbledon moments are interspersed with shots of Mr. Mourinho walking the grounds, discussing the legendary aura of Wimbledon and how well Jaguar complements the event.

Jaguar's Wimbledon video

Throughout the event, Jaguar will be showcasing the XE, XF and XJ models. Although attendees will not be test driving the car, Ms. Schwab is confident that their visibility will drive interest following the matches.

Jaguar at All England Lawn Tennis Club

Jaguar at Wimbledon

Ms. Schwab said that the digital components of the campaign will immerse fans unable to attend in the atmosphere of Wimbledon.

Jaguar also views the partnership as a way to bolster its alignment with tennis in Britain. The automaker also has a presence at the Davis Lloyd tennis club and other facilities.

Mutually beneficial

Luxury brands tend to root their mythology firmly in their homelands and highlight their native ties in many campaigns. Jaguar has shown its commitment to Britain in the past few years with significant investments.

For instance Jaguar is investing about $890.5 million in the West Midlands region of the United Kingdom for research and development and vehicle manufacturing.

The largest portion is going towards Jaguar’s Castle Bromwich plant, with about $594 million earmarked to help prepare the facilities to be able to produce the brand’s XF. Through a renewed emphasis on British production, Jaguar helps to support its home country, as well as reinforce its heritage (see story).

Also, Jaguar Land Rover is continuing to bolster its supply chain with a new engine manufacturing plant in Britain.

The center is the first of its kind in Britain and will establish Jaguar Land Rover as a leader in the country’s automotive space. Furthermore, the many jobs that the facility creates will continue to paint the company in glowing national terms (see story).

While manufacturing investments help Jaguar support the backbone of the country and cultivate long-term loyalty, popular events such as Wimbledon help Jaguar stay top of mind.

"We see the partnership as a way to really enhance the experience for everyone who loves tennis," Ms. Schwab said.

Final Take
Joe McCarthy, staff reporter on Luxury Daily, New York