Buy townhouse, maybe win car

Lotus Townhomes Surrey

Two points to understand about Vancouver real estate and the global financial crisis: 1.) Nobody’s buying real estate, and; 2.) nobody’s buying cars. Not that this stops the marketing mavens from putting the two together.

Today’s pitch, for the Lotus Townhomes in Surrey, is buy a townhouse and win a car. Well, this isn’t exactly the pitch because if you buy a townhouse you don’t get a car for sure — what you get is a *chance* to win a car. How this is an incentive to buy $330,000+ Surrey townhouse is beyond me.

Also beyond me is the odd combo of the car prize and the “condo couple” drinking wine. And what’s with the arrow pointing out the car? Was there confusion in the design studio as to what part of the image depicted the car?

This ad ran in the Westcoast Homes and Design Magazine published November 19. I haven’t seen it anywhere since. Maybe the developer realized the promo is a waste and killed it. As of today, there’s no mention of the “deal” on the Lotus website. Hmmm.

23 Responses to “Buy townhouse, maybe win car”

  1. jesse Says:

    The question is, which one will depreciate faster: the car or the townhome. Read the fine print — some waitress sued her employer when she won a toy Yoda.

  2. blueskies Says:

    the arrow is pointing the the window
    that will soon be broken…..

    that ‘s what BMW stands for: Break My Window

    …and what are the odds that a family member or friend of the
    developer wins the car?…… or am i just jaded and cynical?

  3. Carioca Canuck Says:

    That’s not a Beemer……it is a Japanese car of some sort……Mazda I think.

    Here in Calgary you get a car with several of the condo offers……..a Toyota Yaris……a SMART car……..etc. There’s no 1/35 chance of winning…… get to overpay for the privilege right up front.

  4. Wayne Says:

    Wouldn’t the natural tie-in be to give away a Lotus Elise? There is so little creative thinking in the RE industry. I’m not sure how long an Elise would survive in Surrey but we’re probably talking hours rather than days.

  5. Will Says:

    That’s a Honda Civic. And a 1/35 chance? How many townhomes do they have? At least with Stella they’d give you the GST and a Honda Fit (give, not maybe give).

    Dumbest. Promo. (almost) Ever.

  6. ds7777 Says:

    i think the arrow shows that you will be winning THAT EXACT 2nd hand car, with 25,000 kms 2006 honda civic

  7. paulb Says:

    Make it a 911 Turbo and you may get some attention

  8. VancityAllie Says:

    What’s especially weird is there were some condos being sold in Vancouver that were giving away a car with every purchase. So the “chance” to win one doesn’t seem all that appealing or like a good marketing idea at all. Especially when the photo makes the car look used, like the other posters have been saying 🙂

  9. PM Says:

    Thank you for purchasing a Lotus townhome. Due to market inactivity, your chances of winning a used whip, acquired from Surrey’s latest Police auction, just got much better than 1 in 35.

  10. Bubbles Says:

    Looking at this ad made me miss the days when you could actually tell one make of car from another. Win this car! It’s a Honda. No, a Mazda. Wait a minute, maybe it’s a BMW. Anyway, you might ‘win’ whatever slightly used car we decide to unload on you. What a joke! They expect this ad will move any of their overpriced townhomes in …… wait for it ……. Surrey. Ha! Ha!

  11. Happy Renter in North Vancouver Says:

    Maybe they should say “You have a one in 35 chance of turning a profit if you hold this POS for ten years”… Where’s the Honesty in advertising.

    BTW, what’s the tagline “Location, Location, Location” – you’re stuck in the freaking boonies…

  12. Larry Yatkowsky Says:

    Considering the recession, I’m thinking it’s time to get silly with a new green teaser – 4 new Norco bicyles and a sack of potatoes.

    The potatoes don’t come with a peeler or lights.

  13. Proponent Says:

    lol, awesome.
    I guess they’re hoping that someone out there thinks “this car” is a Lotus (you know, to match with the name of the townhomes – which at least would have made a little bit of sense). This is obviously not the case.

    Are they promoting drinking and driving then! i guess the owners will be living in Surrey!

    I will however give credit to those people who choose to live out in a residential complex in Surrey rather than live in downtown yet still complain about noise. Good on you!

  14. buff_butler Says:

    This is probably the worst marketing ad i have ever seen. 😛

  15. 1 Bed & Flex Says:

    At least the Developer went the environmental route and displayed a hybrid civic. Perhaps this insinuates that owners will be forced to commute? I’m surprised the ad didn’t read “The First 10 Buyers will have a 1 in 35 chance to win this car!”

  16. TaxHaven Says:

    Forget cars…! No one has yet questioned the insanity of paying $330,000 for a condo (not even a real house!) in the remote suburbs, where you have to DRIVE everywhere, you own no land or next-to-no land and you are faced with taxes, maintenance fees etc. for the rest of your natural life.

    Emigrate, guys! House here in Taiwan is similar to that pictured & cost us @CAN$90,000.

  17. Jack's Miner Niners Says:

    Awesome coincidence.

    I read this post last night. Had a good laugh.

    This morning I was out for breakfast and overheard one of Vancouver’s most prominent realtors proudly sharing his great marketing idea – include an Aston Martin with the purchase of a client’s condo.

    Here’s an idea, you keep the car and sell the home for what it’s actually worth.


  18. Proponent Says:


    Trouble with buying in Taiwan is that rather than Driving everywhere I would have to fly everywhere! lol…. although I can likely take quite a few plane rides with the $240,000 difference (or the $410,000+ difference if I were looking downtown!).

  19. Elaine Says:

    Stella was giving away cars presumably because it’s being built on top of a Honda dealership. Think about that. Living over a car dealership. Though I guess cause it’s already near the corner of one of East Van’s most exhaust-filled traffic-plagued three-way intersections, what’s the difference? Will they still page the salesmen out in the lot through a PA system?

  20. genxr Says:

    Great! 1 in 35 chances in winning a car? Do they require all units to be sold before the draw takes place? That will take forever. Thanks but no thanks. Anyone who lives that far in the first place will have a car already. Why have the burden of another car’s expenses. Nice try.

  21. Merridith Says:

    Hi CondoHype:

    I totally LOVE your column.

    I don’t know how you get your material, but I thought that I would offer you a couple of links that have good potential fodder.

    You know the developers are getting desperate when they are paying credit card interest AND are personally guarantee their development loans. This is a high-end development.

    I wonder if we are going to see more holes in the ground left unfinished?

    Or how about this one? An unbelievable bargain. For only a ONE QUARTER share. On sale now – for $50,000 less. Hurry! Won’t last long.

  22. Sarah Says:

    I just won the CAR!!!! Sweet Deal, and the townhome is lovely.

  23. Bill Says:

    You guys are wrong! every purchaser’s gets the car. I just bought one of the newest townhomes in Surrey and got a free car!!!!!!

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