Ford in Trouble in India for Offensive Ads that Show Women Tied Up in a Boot

Three upcoming print ads for the Ford Figo that surfaced on the Internet in India are giving the Blue Oval a bad name in the country, and since this is being reported elsewhere, in the rest of the world as well. That’s because two of the three ads, which are the work of JWT India, are depicting women in demeaning poses with sexual connotations. While it is not known whether the ads have begun appearing in newspapers, magazines and on billboards yet, the campaign is still distressing for a country where rape is considered a national problem by the UN. Entitled “Leave your worries behind”, the campaign features three ads revolving around the Figo’s spacious boot. The first one shows former Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi smiling behind the wheel of the Figo while three scantily dressed women are tied-up and bundled into the car’s boot. The women depicted in the ad are apparently those who testified against the politician during his sex trial in Italy. On the same note, the second ad shows a happy Paris Hilton with the Kardashian sisters tied up in the boot of the Figo, with Khloé Kardashian having a…ball strapped in her mouth! There’s also a third ad featuring Michael Schumacher, who has his younger F1 rivals Fernando Alonso, Lewis Hamilton and Sebastian Vettel in the boot of the Figo. The first two ads are providing Ford with some unwanted attention, as India is still shocked after the brutal gang rape and murder of a 23-year-old woman in New Delhi late last year. A few days ago, the Indian parliament passed the Anti-Rape legislation, pushing more severe laws to curb sexual violence in the country. In this context, showing ads with tied up women in the boot of a car is not an inspired move…even though they did include a version with men, which for the most part, went by unnoticed. Ford India admitted the move was wrong and expressed its regret about the print ads. In a press statement to IndianCarsBikes that asked about the posters, Ford said: “We deeply regret this incident and agree with our agency partners that it should have never happened. The posters are contrary to the standards of professionalism and decency within Ford and our agency partners. Together with our partners, we are reviewing approval and oversight processes to help ensure nothing like this ever happens again.By Dan Mihalascu Story References: Indiancarsbikes