ACADIA NATIONAL PARK — A new BMW motorcycle commercial that was shot entirely in Acadia in September has started airing on a number of cable TV channels.
The spot opens with an attractive young couple paddling a rowboat on Long Pond. They are towing a Huck Finn-style raft made of logs on which is mounted a shiny new GS-model bike.
When they get to shore, they get out of the rowboat, hop on the bike and go for a ride on the Park Loop Road. They are shown riding under a carriage road bridge and along the rocky coast before stopping for a picnic on Cadillac Mountain at sunset.
Jim Callahan, marketing manager for BMW motorcycles, said most motorcycle commercials are shot in southern California. But having grown up in Massachusetts and vacationed in Maine as a young boy, he said, “I wanted to do something in New England, and I knew how beautiful the Maine coastline is.”
Callahan said the GS-model motorcycle is known for “adventure riding,” meaning it is engineered for riding either on road or off. But he said BMW wants to broaden the bike’s appeal. So the underlying message is that the GS isn’t just for those who want to ride around the world.
“You can take one out on a Saturday and just go for a ride with your better half,” he said. “You can spend a couple of hours having fun and then put it back in the garage and go about the rest of your life. We wanted to be able to capture that.”
He said the desire to convey a sense of weekend adventure led to the idea of putting the motorcycle on a raft. And that led to Bar Harbor resident Eben Richardson, who has worked as a production assistant on other commercials and television shows that have been shot in the area.
“We needed a masterful, brilliant engineer/handyman who could build us a raft that wouldn’t sink or flip over when we put a $20,000 motorcycle on it,” Callahan said. “That’s where Eben came in. He had it so perfect that it was seamless from beginning to end.”
The entire commercial was shot in one day. It can be seen at youtube.com/watch?v=TG93e6P5zMM.