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Volkswagen Admits Its Own Golf Advert Was ‘Wrong’ Before Pulling It

by : Emma Rosemurgey on : 21 May 2020 15:01
Volkswagen Admits Its Own Golf Advert Was 'Wrong' Before Pulling ItVolkswagen Admits Its Own Golf Advert Was 'Wrong' Before Pulling ItVolkswagen/Instagram

Car manufacturer Volkswagen has been forced to pull a Golf advert that was posted online after it received a huge backlash branding it racist

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Now, the manufacturer has pledged to investigate to find out how the offensive post came about.

It comes after a 10-second clip of the advert was posted to the German company’s Instagram story on Tuesday, May 19, before being deleted shortly afterwards.

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The video shows a black man standing near a yellow Volkswagon Golf, before a giant hand, belonging to a white woman, appears to push him away from the car by pinching his head and flicking him inside a nearby café.

Critics have pointed out the words ‘DER NEUE GOLF’ (the new Golf) appear on screen, but the letters N E G E R appear before the others fade in – spelling the German translation of highly offensive and racist N-word.

Just to take it that one step further, the name of the Buenos Aires café the man is thrown into is called ‘Petit Colon’, which is French for ‘Little Colonist’, next door to the Teatro Colon, which is named after Christopher Columbus.

VW Golf Advert Was 'Wrong' Before Pulling ItVW Golf Advert Was 'Wrong' Before Pulling ItVolkswagen/Instagram

The video is accompanied by inappropriate jaunty music, alongside computer game-like sound effects.

Unsurprisingly, the controversial Golf advert prompted an immediate kick off on social media, with many disgusted followers branding the it racist.

Volkswagen immediately removed the clip, however a spokesperson insisted that the ‘origin of the people depicted is irrelevant’, adding that the company is against ‘all forms of racism, xenophobia and discrimination,’ according to reports in The Telegraph.

The car company said in a statement that it was ‘surprised and shocked’ the clip had been ‘so misunderstood.’ In a second statement, however, Volkswagen admitted fault and apologised for the tastelessness of the clip.

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Volkswagen Golf Ad Was 'Wrong' Before Pulling ItVolkswagen Golf Ad Was 'Wrong' Before Pulling ItVolkswagen/Instagram

‘Without question: the video is wrong and tasteless. We will clarify how this could happen – and take consequences from this,’ the company said.

Volkswagen is no stranger to a bit of controversy, the company was founded by the Nazi Party’s German Labour Front in 1937.

The company was involved in an international scandal, known as Dieselgate, in April 2017, when a US judge ordered it to pay $2.8 billion for ‘rigging diesel-powered vehicles to cheat on government emissions tests’.

Volkswagen then spent an eye-watering $18 billion recalling and repairing the cars affected by the scandal.

If you have been affected by any of the issues in this article and wish to speak to someone in confidence, contact Stop Hate UK by visiting their website www.stophateuk.org/talk

Emma Rosemurgey

Emma Rosemurgey is an NCTJ trained Journalist who started her career by producing The Royal Rosemurgey newspaper in 2004, which kept her family up to date with the goings on of her sleepy north east village. She graduated from the University of Central Lancashire in Preston and started her career in regional newspapers before joining Tyla (formerly Pretty 52) in 2017, and progressing onto UNILAD in 2019.

Topics: News, Advertising, Germany, Instagram, Racism, Volkswagen, VW Golf

Credits

The Telegraph
  1. The Telegraph

    Volkswagen forced to apologise for racist advert