Toyota’s interactive magazine ad measures your heart rate

Well, that’s one way to get attention!

Toyota’s 2018 Camry ad in this month’s InStyle magazine let’s you grab the car’s “door handles” and see your heart race, literally.

Putting your thumbs on the metal sensors as you “open” the car doors might freak you out more than excite you. It’s pretty jarring to have an ad light up and beep at you in the middle of a magazine with Oprah Winfrey on the cover.

As seen in the video up top, the ad unfolds like a pop-up book to reveal the interior of the Camry (it also smells like a perfume-y leather inside the 3D insert). While touching the sensors the car screen in the center console measures what looks like your heart rate with a simple graphic display and a corresponding beep. 

The design is the work of Saatchi & Saatachi, which made 50,000 inserts of the over-the-top ad, according to the Drum. It wasn’t so simple to mail out this tech in the middle of a magazine — it took eight months of research and testing to get it right. 

The project’s creative director told the Drum, “At one point we had so many batteries in the insert that the post office wouldn’t ship it so we had to reconfigure the battery design using only two batteries.”

Don’t expect a full heart reading from the ad, it’s not a legit heart rate monitor. It does need a pulse from your thumbs (or other fingers) to work, but beyond that it doesn’t give you much useful info about your heart health. It also is supposed to emulate the sensory experience of driving, but mostly it becomes about the novelty of a beeping, light-up, heart-sensing ad.

The Toyota 2018 Camry starts at around $24,000, but we have no idea how much Toyota put into this ad campaign other than way too much.

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