Kia’s 2020 Super Bowl ad addresses the issue of homelessness, as told through the eyes of Oakland Raider’s star running back, Josh Jacobs.
In the spot, Jacobs shares words of advice with his younger self. In voiceover, he says, “Sometimes I wonder what I’d tell my younger self if I ever saw him. I’d tell him, ‘Josh, it’s gonna be hard growing up homeless. But you gotta believe in yourself. Be tougher than the world around you.'”
According to KTUL, Jacobs grew up homeless for part of his childhood. He eventually beat the odds stacked against him and went on to play for the Alabama Crimson Tide. He then became a first-round pick in the NFL.
Kia Is Donating $1,000 per Yard Gained in the Big Game to Help Fight Homelessness
Jacobs recently shared the ad on Instagram, writing, “My path hasn’t been an easy one, and I hope together we can help and inspire the next generation.”
In the post, he also reveals that Kia is donating $1,000 per yard in the Big Game to help fight homelessness. KTUL reports that Positive Tomorrows, Covenant House, and StandUp for Kids are some of the charities that will receive donations from Kia.
In 2019, Sports Casting wrote a piece titled, “NFL: How Josh Jacobs Went From Homeless to Oakland Raiders Stardom.” In the article, they reveal that after Josh’s parents got divorced, they frequently argued, which “lead to him eventually being kicked out.” In an interview with the NFL, Jacobs shared, “My father would give her a stack of money… She would go out and spend it and we’d be eating Salvation Army food. I would ask her how she could go spend that money and not have good food for us to eat. She didn’t like that, how I rebelled and spoke up. So, she kicked me out.”
After that, Jacobs went to live with his father, who was struggling financially. Jacobs’ says of his father, “I remember seeing him not sleep… It’s crazy because I didn’t notice that I was sleeping in a car. I was just thinking that I was falling asleep and waking up. I didn’t think anything about it because I felt safe. He would just drive around until he found a place to sleep and then I’d get up the next day and go to school.”
The Ad Introduces the Kia Seltos
Jacobs is the inspiration for the ad, which highlights the Kia Seltos, which will make its way to car dealerships in the upcoming months.
As Motor1 points out, the Kia Seltos debuted last year at the Los Angeles Auto Show. The outlet writes, “Powered comes from one of two gasoline engines – a naturally aspirated 2.0-liter or a turbocharged 1.6-liter. The larger mill makes 146 horsepower (109 kilowatts) while the smaller engine produces 175 hp (130 kW). The 2.0-liter pairs with an Intelligent Variable Transmission while the smaller engine gets the seven-speed dual-clutch automatic. All-wheel drive with a center locking differential is an available option.”
The car will have a starting price of just $22,000, according to Kia.