Some of the top car moment in music video history include rapper M.I.A. riding on a BMW as it drives on two wheels and the Jaguars used as a seductive dance platform in Whitesnake’s “Here I Go Again.”
There’s no doubt about it: cars and music go well together.
The cross-genre appeal of cars helps them earn starring roles in videos in everything from country to pop to heavy metal. While some of the earliest car features in videos came organically, automakers have realized the potential of using music videos as sales tools for their latest models.
Take a look at our list of some of the top car moments of music history, from the use of the lead singer’s sweet ride in Whitesnake’s “Here I Go Again” to the full-on product placement in Arianna and Pitbull’s “Sexy People (The Fiat Song).”
Judas Priest – Heading Out to the Highway
A Thunderbird and a 1957 Chevrolet Bel Air make an appearance in the race sequence featured in the clip for this 1981 heavy metal hit. Which car completes the lap first? The Chevy appears to be in the lead for most of the video, but the video ends with a shot of lead singer Rob Halford standing in the middle of the roadway, preventing the audience from ever finding out who won.
M.I.A. – Bad Girls
Don’t try this at home! Equally inspired by YouTube videos of Saudi teens drifting on public highways and an image rapper M.I.A. saw of an “Iranian chick driving a truck,” this video features some serious auto stunts. M.I.A. sings parts of the song – and does her nails – while sitting on the side of a car driving on two wheels, a stunt also known as skiing.
Whitesnake – Here I Go Again
Women, cars, and 80s hair music…some things just mix. Actress Tawny Kitaen, best known for starring opposite Tom Hanks in 1984’s “Bachelor Party,” stars in the video for this hair band classic alongside two very lucky Jaguars. Kitaen does cartwheels and some seductive moves across the hoods of the cars, which belonged to lead singer David Coverdale and video director Marty Callner.
ZZ Top – Sharp Dressed Man
One man’s fantasy comes to life in the video for this 1983 hit, in which the main character’s life is changed by a trio of beauties rolling around in ZZ Top’s signature Eliminator. This hot rod starred in several of the band’s music videos, and was based on a 1933 Ford 3W coupe.
Kelly Clarkson – Go
This track, which followed on the heels of hits like “Since U Been Gone” and “Behind These Hazel Eyes,” owes its race sequence featuring two Shelby Mustangs to the fact the song was recorded for a Ford ad campaign. Regardless of the video’s commercial styling, the Kelly vs. Kelly race pits the 2006 Shelby Mustang GT500 against 1967 model.
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