Google are currently testing out image extensions for Adwords ads – this currently applies to the top positioned ad – click on the screenshot below to see the full image:
The functionality is currently within a group Beta test and not open to all advertisers – but if rolled out will allow PPC ads to also display images related to the ad context, for example showcasing the advertised product or business location. Up until this point product ads were the only way to include images within ads – not standard PPC ads.
PPC Land Grab
This land grab of the results page has quite a high visual impact, as you can see if you are appearing in the top position then the likelihood of a click through is increased, should this test come out of Beta then the need for high quality & up to date imagery will become even more important than it is at present to out run the competition.