MG Rover Group is launching a new advertising campaign for its Rover brand this week, targeting "a discerning, affluent audience", according to a statement.

It is the first work from new ad agency St Luke's since it won the account and marks a return to Rover's focus on product quality and design heritage.

The press and radio campaign features Rover's new 'Leather as Standard' offer, whereby all 2005 25 and 45 models come with leather upholstery as standard package.

This campaign principally targets 'empty nesters' who are taking advantage of their freedom to choose the kind of life they want to live. This is reflected in the new end line: "Rover - Your Space" which features in both the press and radio ads.

The press campaign, which will appear in national newspapers, Sunday supplements and consumer magazines, uses the values of the marque to create an up-market, aspirational feel to the ads.  The photography, together with the strong black and red colour theme signals "a renewed sense of sophistication", according to the car maker.

Two 40-second radio ads support the leather proposition with a sensual but humorous approach. The first, 'Aromatherapy', plays with the smell of leather, whilst the second, 'Cloth', examines the differences between the look, feel and durability of leather upholstery and that of cloth.
 
MG Rover's director of marketing and product services, Steve Robertson, said: "By offering leather as standard… we are creating a unique proposition which will appeal to our target audience."

Joint MD of St Luke's, Neil Henderson, said: "We've gone back to the brand's roots and picked up on the quality, style and attention to detail that Rover is rightly proud of."

The campaign opens on February 4.

A new campaign for MG will also launch in February, aiming to reposition the brand and build on its sporting heritage.