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As Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump traded political punches Monday night during the first presidential debate, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles NV debuted a new ad campaign promoting political harmony through its Jeep brand.

The 60-second ad depicted people with different political affiliations and lifestyles driving red 2017 Grand Cherokee Summit models and blue 2017 Grand Cherokee Trailhawk editions. A split screen was used through much of the ad to combine the off-road Trailhawk and luxury Summit models.

The commercial ended with an owner of the Summit putting a blue Democratic bumper sticker on her vehicle and the Trailhawk owner putting a red Republican sticker on his. The message,“What unites us is stronger than what divides us” appears before cutting away to the vehicle driving off in different directions with “Jeep | Free to Be” on the screen.

“ ‘What unites us is stronger than what divides us’ is the human-centric message that ties the vehicles and our story together,” Fiat Chrysler Global Chief Marketing Officer Olivier Francois said in a statement. “What better platform to premiere this message of unity than during a moment of such cultural significance?”

The commercial uses Cat Steven’s song “If You Want to Sing Out, Sing Out” as its soundtrack.

It aired Monday during the “Big Bang Theory” on CBS that started at 8 p.m., followed by cable news channels including MSNBC and Fox News after the debate ended.

FCA US declined to comment on how long the Free to Be campaign will last or how many ads are expected. Based on Francois’ mindset of keeping the company’s brands relevant, it’s expected to continue through the presidential election.

The ad is the company’s second political-themed ad campaign this year.

The first began airing in February in connection to Presidents Day for the Chrysler brand. The ads featured actors Martin Sheen and Bill Pullman — who both have portrayed presidents in films — engaging in comedic banter about Chrysler sedans.

mwayland@detroitnews.com

(313) 222-2504

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