Van Halen's commercial reward -- The band members received 300 ZXs for Nissan's use of their ''You Really Got Me'' remake

By Dan Snierson
December 20, 1996 at 05:00 AM EST

With Van Halen’s stompin’ remake of the Kinks’ ”You Really Got Me” in the background, Nissan’s Toy Story-esque commercial became one of the year’s most turbocharged spots. And though the folks at TBWA/Chiat Day, the agency behind the ad, knew the tune was a perfect fit (on the reject list: Tom Jones’ ”She’s a Lady”), selling the idea to Van Halen took a lot more creativity. The deal was clinched only after Chiat Day scored Eddie Van Halen and each of his band mates a limited-edition 1996 Nissan 300 ZX. ”The guys are into sports cars, so this was a nice addition to their collections,” notes Chiat Day account director Pam Keehn. ”They were totally stoked.” Hope the Kinks at least got free fuzzy dice.

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