Jay Leno’s getting a bigger-than-normal soundstage for his new prime-time talk show on NBC this fall, just so he can drive onto the set in some of his famous vintage cars. Seems a little tone-deaf, given that people are selling their Chevys just to feed their families and dealerships are going under in record numbers. But it could, in fact, be Leno’s own way of surviving the recession: The gambit is a clever way to sneak product placement into the show during a time when car manufacturers are offering to pay your bills just to get you to buy from them. Essentially, it could seamlessly give automakers some extra bang for their advertising buck while helping make cars seem a little bit cool again. (Between gas prices, impending environmental devastation, and government bailouts, U.S. autos are soooo far from their ’57 Chevy days.)
What do you think, PopWatchers? Are you turned off by the prospect of Jay arriving in motorized style? Or impressed with the ingenuity of such product placement?