Indian Car Ad Goes Viral, Not in a Good Way

A screenshot of an ad posted online last week by JWT India to promote the Ford Figo, a hatchback car made in India.

A screenshot of an ad posted online last week by JWT India to promote the Ford Figo, a hatchback car made in India.

Perhaps putting the maxim that there is no such thing as bad publicity to a new test, Ford Motor Company was forced to apologize Monday for an ad posted online last week promoting its Indian hatchback with a cartoon showing three bound and gagged women in the rear of a vehicle driven by Silvio Berlusconi, the former Italian prime minister.  The cartoon was posted online by JWT India, a branch of one of the world’s largest ad agencies, as part of a series intended to illustrate the small car’s rear storage space, with the tagline: “Leave your worries behind with Figo’s extra-large boot,” or trunk. After the image rapidly spread online, and prompted a backlash from women’s groups in India, it was withdrawn, along with two other versions of the cartoon ad, which showed the reality television star Paris Hilton using the car to abduct the Kardashian sisters and the Formula 1 driver Michael Schumacher kidnapping three of his rivals….

Click here to read more