Audi removes 'vulgar' ad, apologizes to public
Luxury car maker Audi replied on its official Tweeter account today, apologizing for a controversial advertisement that triggered an online backlash in China.
"We regret the ad and it in no way reflects our values. The responsible parties will examine steps to prevent future incidents," Audi tweeted.
The ad created by the used car sales division of Audi's joint venture in China was accused of objectifying women and comparing them to used cars.
The company’s used car sales department made an apology on its official WeChat account today. “We have removed the ad, effective immediately,” they said in the letter of apology. “We sincerely accept the criticism and advice we’ve received, and extend our sincere apologies to the public.”
They also accepted that the public sensed disrespect for women from the ad and admitted they were not thoughtful enough about the possible offence that may have been caused. They said they appreciated receiving scrutiny from media and the public and promised they would act more prudently in the future.
On July 17, a netizen expressed her anger towards the 30-second commercial on Weibo after she watched it prior to a movie screening, accusing the company of objectifying women and comparing them to used cars. She said she couldn’t believe a world-class enterprise such as Audi could produce such a vulgar ad. Her post was then shared widely online.