Toyota Yaris Takes On Towies

Toyota New Zealand promoted the Yaris in 2006 with a television commercial featuring a nippy, cheeky little red car taking on a gang of tow trucks (towies) with a go-anywhere, can-do anything attitude.

Toyota Yaris chased by tow trucks

Toyota Yaris leaves behind the flattened remains of a tow truck

The television advertisement begins with the driverless Toyota Yaris parked outside a tow-wagon depot. As the parking meter expires the Yaris toots its horn and squirts its screen washer, catching a tow truck on it’s headlight. This is clearly an invitation for a chase and sure enough, the driverless towies burst through the compound gates to pursue the car in single file. The Yaris turns off the road into a deserted container terminal and engages in a game of hide and seek. The viewer sees various tow trucks into situations where they one by one come to grief during their effort to find the Yaris. The scene then shifts to the adjacent dump where the final tow truck is caught in a vehicle crusher and is crushed into a cube scrap metal. Through a series of quick turns and maneuvers the Toyota Yaris survives. The tagline: “Yaris. Its really quite clever.”


The Toyota Yaris Towies ad was created at Saatchi & Saatchi, New Zealand, by executive creative director Mike O’Sullivan, creative director Toby Talbot, art director Rosita Rawnsley-Mason, copywriter Stacey Lee, creative Josh Moore and agency producer Martin Grey.

Filming was directed by Paul Middleditch via Plaza Films, with director of photography Danny Ruhlmann, executive producer Peter Masterton and editor Jonathan Venz.

Post production was done at The Lab, Sydney, by colourist Ben Eagleton, visual effects artist Rosano Lepri and producer Josie King.

Sound and music was mixed at Music Mill.

Woo Hoo Music

The track, “Woo Hoo” was performed by Japanese trio The 5,6,7,8s on their 1996 album Bomb The Twist and was featured on the soundtrack of Kill Bill, Vol. 1. The track was originally performed by The Rock-A-Teens. The Japanese version also featured in advertisements for Carling lager and Vonage VOIP service in 2004. The song reached #28 on the UK Singles Chart in 2004.

Kill Bill Vol. 1 at

The's - Bomb the Twist - Woo Hoo

See the decision made by NZ’s Advertising Standards Complaint Board (RTF file) in response to complaints that the Towies ad was likely to encourage dangerous driving behaviour.