About a year ago, the marketing geniuses of Pepsi MAX came up with the idea of having NASCAR star Jeff Gordon disguise himself as a milquetoast tire-kicker and shoot a video with him taking a used-car salesman on a high-speed joyride in a Camaro. It was a good notion, but the setup was a bit too transparent — the more you thought about it, the more staged it seemed. (C'mon, cupholder camera?)
So the marketers reconsidered, with Gordon himself. What if they could pull the same stunt, but this time on someone who had no idea it was coming? A mark who would offer an authentic reaction, yet not pursue charges for getting tossed around like wet laundry — like, perhaps, one of the Jalopnik writers who made the most noise about the first video?
The result? Proof that Jeff Gordon knows how to scare the Pepsi MAX out of someone for real — although Gordon told Yahoo Autos he was almost as nervous as his passenger.