A BMW 3-Series spot has been banned from UK television as it was said to promote reckless driving.
The UK-based ‘Advertising Standard Authority’ (ASA) received three complaints from viewers about BMW’s ad titled “Made for Curves”, stating that it condoned dangerous driving.
The video shows a 3-Series driving through a twisty road with a voiceover saying, “curves invite you in”. This happens right before the driver is changing gear and the camera is focusing on the tachometer. “Curves inspire you, and definitely dare you. And the new BMW 3-Series was made for every one of them”, continues the voice in the background. That didn’t seem to sit well with the British advertising watchdog.
In a statement issued on Tuesday, the ASA noted that quick acceleration and excessive speed were not explicitly indicated in the ad.
“However, we noted the ad showed the car being driven along the coastal road from various angles, through a succession of fast-paced shots, including a few aerial shots tracking the vehicle’s movements and shots of a gear change and of the tachometer rapidly increasing,” said the UK watchdog. “We considered that this gave the impression that the car depicted was being driven along the winding coastal road at considerable speed.”
The agency continued: “We considered that the handling capability of the vehicle had not been communicated in a clear context of safety, which was a requirement of the Code. Because the ad implicitly challenged the viewer to drive at speed around corners, we considered that it had also encouraged irresponsible and potentially dangerous driving. For those reasons, we concluded that the ad breached the Code.”
BMW’s answer came in the form of a statement, with the Bavarian brand saying that the ad did not contain any references to aggressive or fast driving and the only “dare” was that of challenging drivers to enjoy their trip.
The “Curves help you escape” tagline was also used in the voiceover and it seems that they’ve indeed helped the BMW 3-Series ad from escaping British televisions…