Ford is asking a variety of developers to show what its EV “Frunks” can do

The American automaker has tapped Ghetto Gastro culinary creators, tattoo artist Suro Shinn and musicians Imani Lauren and Kaelin Ellis to bring their unique talents to the Ford trunks, or frunks, to showcase the electric performance and extra space that they offer.

Made famous by Porsche and Ferrari, the frunk (a portmanteau of “front” and “trunk”) has found its way into countless other vehicles since Kanye West rapped, “Y’all pop the trunk, I pop the hood, Ferrari.” into his 2007 single “Good Life”.

To promote the spaciousness and versatility of the frunks of its F-150 Lightning and Mustang Mach-E electric models – made possible by the lack of an internal combustion engine under the hood – Ford today unveiled a playful new campaign.

The three-part video series, co-created with Wieden + Kennedy New York, features a handful of influencers and creators from diverse beliefs using the frunk in new, imaginative ways. With each episode, Ford aims to address a core element of culture: design, food and music.

“[We] started with very human-centric designs when constructing the Frunk,” says Todd Fairburn, a US marketing communications manager at Ford Motor Company.

In one episode, the brand Ghetto Gastro, a Bronx, NY culinary collective and activist group, challenges them to create a tailgate-inspired meal from the trunk of an F-150. Ghetto Gastro team members Pierre Serrao and Jon Gray pose with their vehicles and conjure up a gourmet meal of flavorful grilled shrimp and a waffle made from ancient grains and cassava – paired with Limonada de Coco, a creamy, refreshing Colombian lemonade.

Serrao and Gray explain the importance of using locally sourced ingredients and compare their culinary ecology to the eco-friendly Ford F-150 Lightning. “We really want to preserve our home… and our home isn’t just the Bronx, our home is the planet,” says Gray. “That’s the lifestyle we’re trying to live. Put only the best in your body – it’s like, you know, when you load the whip.”

The Wieden + Kennedy New York team says the campaign’s core message is to shine a spotlight on the versatility of the frunk. “Ford created the most popular truck of all time – the F-150. And while it wasn’t the first to develop the frunk, it’s the first to develop one with so much power – it can even power a house,” says an agency spokesman. “But we wanted to show people that the frunk is actually the bonus space they never knew they needed. And that’s a kitchen, a tattoo shop, and even a recording studio.”

In fact, in another episode, Ford taps into two musicians who never met – saxophone prodigy Imani Lauren and funk artist and producer Kaelin Ellis – to create a musical masterpiece using the electrical energy of F-150 lighting . With two USB ports, four 120-volt outlets, and the power of the F-150, Lauren and Ellis can power their electric instruments and multi-stage speaker system to ultimately deliver an atmospheric, sax-driven rooftop performance.

In the latest episode, Suro Shinn, a Miami, Fla.-based tattoo artist with a large Instagram following, harnesses the F-150 Lightning’s electrical power—via the frunk’s terminals—to create three unique Ford-inspired tattoo designs to create.

In recent years, the automaker has ramped up its electrification efforts — a move that will likely help it reach new audiences and potential customers. The new campaign, What’s in the Frunk, aims to expand that effort – by leveraging cultural moments in food, music and design in partnership with young creators of color, Ford is making a big effort to connect with a different breed of consumer than in the past (according to 2018 data, the average F-150 buyer was 55 years old and three quarters of all new F-150s were bought by white men).

“For the past two years, Ford has really prioritized making EV ownership more accessible for everyone,” said Ford’s Fairburn.

The new campaign launches today across Ford’s digital and social channels. Additional placements will be launched on Instagram, TikTok, Snapchat, Twitter and YouTube.

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