After last year’s earthquake and tsunami in Northeast Japan disrupted global supply chains and halted auto protection, there were doubts over how long it would take Japanese automakers to get back on their feet.
Yet while Japan’s auto industry is still suffering from the aftermath of the disaster a year later, the three biggest carmakers—Toyota, Honda and Nissan—are rebounding faster than initially expected.
Perhaps as a display of this resilience, Honda has issued a manifesto to the world with its newest TV commercial that it won’t stand to be left in the dust.
While the commercial, titled “Damned if we lose!” (Makerumonka), seems to have been made as a display of the automaker’s own ambition, many Japanese viewers have taken it as a call to arms for Japanese industry and enterprise as a whole.
The Honda website details the story behind the commercial’s production:
We filmed our most well-known vehicles, valuable assets of Honda, in succession. We had never brought all these vehicles together in one place until filming this commercial, and set was naturally filled with tension as the director, camera crew and staff worked to finish filming in a single day. But as the cameras rolled, we were unified by that very thought: “Damned if we lose!” We hope you enjoy these 60 seconds, the product of our utmost efforts.
The enthusiasm of the production staff certainly comes through loud and clear, and it’s easy to see why viewers have taken the commercials message to heart. One YouTube user puts it best: “2012 marks the beginning of a new Japan. The blood of the Japanese is stirring!”
In the months after the March 2011 disaster, the people of the world encouraged the Japanese to fight on with the words, Ganbare, Nippon. Now, a year later and with recovery progressing, Honda’s message may be just what Japan needs to drive itself forward to a new era.
【Vehicles in the commercial, in order of appearance】Honda A-engine・RC143・RA272・S500・Super CUB C100・T360・N360・Dream CB 750 Four・Prelude・RT1100・Civic CVCC・Accord Hatchback・Motocompo・City・NSX・Beat・Dax（ST50 Export Z）・Odyssey・Insight・FIT・NSX Compact
[ Read in Japanese ]