Updated: Apr 6, 2020
Volvo CE Global launched a stunt-filled mini-movie, "Pump It Up," an 80's throwback featuring Swedish action superstar Dolph Lundgren, worldwide on October 24, 2018, as part of their Excavators for Any Challenge campaign. The boot camp-themed video showcases the ultimate power and endurance of Volvo excavators. Lundgren takes the role of drill instructor and meets a large line-up of Volvo excavators, weighing between 1.5 and 95 tons, in the desert.
"I'm here to pump you up!" he declares, instilling obedience in the fleet before starting boot camp-style training drills to the tune of Technotronic’s 1989 track Pump Up the Jam.
"Since 1985, action titan Dolph Lundgren has tendered a reputation as the toughest guy in the room through his films and fitness lifestyle," said Shannon Miller, Adweek writer, podcast creator, and contributor.
For over 30 years, he was the powerhouse behind many popular action films, including Rocky IV, Universal Soldier, and The Expendables. Currently, Lundgren is enjoying another surge in popularity thanks to his leading roles in the upcoming releases of Creed II and Aquaman.
With a background in engineering and a scholarship to MIT, Lundgren is an ideal match to test the limits of the toughness, versatility, and intelligent engineering behind Volvo's full excavator range
During a series of rigorous drills and extraordinary stunts, the machines do "push-ups" to work their arms, pull Lundgren atop a huge concrete block across the desert, flip gigantic tires across a muddy track, and take part in the world’s first-ever known excavator pull-up, fulfilling the film’s final message that they really are excavators for any challenge.
"An excavator can be seen doing its version of a pull-up on an iron beam, which is equal parts perplexing and spectacular," said Miller. "No matter what challenge he throws at them, the machines execute each task with ease."
"Push Boundaries" has been a consistent message and goal for Volvo since CONEXPO 2017, and "Pump it Up" is no exception.
“This is a good demonstration of the flexibility and strength of our excavators, from small to mighty," said Volvo CE Senior Vice President of Corporate Communications Bill Law. "Some of these stunts are a little out of the ordinary, but we wanted to be daring and set ourselves a challenge to push them further. Our excavators work hard every day at construction sites all over the world, something that requires precisely that power and stamina, together with skilled operators behind the wheel.”
While pull-ups and tire flips are not everyday activities, these stunts are entirely authentic and were carried out by professionals in a safe and closed environment. Few machines are as versatile as the excavator, and this campaign highlights their ability to deliver optimum power and performance for almost any task.
In the real world, you can rely on these machines for everything from site preparation, trenching and excavation to demolition, truck loading and pipe laying.
“This job was probably the most unusual role I’ve ever taken on," said Lundgren. "It was fascinating to see Volvo’s excavators and its skilled operators performing all the various physical exercises with absolutely no movie stunts involved. Honestly, I didn’t think it was even possible. Being born in Sweden, I have a long relationship with this classic Swedish brand; as a young boy, I rode in the back of my dad’s Volvo. To me, Volvo represents some great Scandinavian values, like clean design, excellent quality, and a true care for the environment. I’m really pleased to get this opportunity for us to work together.”
Even as a drill instructor with the formidable task of disciplining a larger-than-life fleet of machines, Lundgren could be seen enjoying himself throughout the video. "Watching him confidently dance and lip sync along pushes the film into serious “delightful” territory," said Miller. "Between the soundtrack and the star, “Pump It Up” is not only a fun, slick nod to the 80s, but an intense display of Volvo’s precision equipment that will leave viewers feeling confident in their ability to carry out the most demanding jobs."
Pump up your jobsite with a Volvo excavator by contacting your local Highway sales representative, and remember, don't try this at home or on the jobsite.