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27 April 2017

The fun police don't just work hard in Aus, take a look at this UK ad that just got banned

By Danny KwanDanny Kwan
Not even a video, just words.

If you think that our nanny state’s war on speed is getting a tad ridiculous, with its determination to shove more speed cameras in your face and crucifying the Focus RS’ “drift mode”, then you will have some sympathy for BMW’s UK marketing department.

Recently the UK’s ASA (Advertising Standards Agency) and CAP (Committees of Advertising Practice), has taken offense at the Bavarian company's promotion of their latest performance behemoth, the M760Li xDrive.

The ASA alleges, the advertisement - which was originally featured in a Telegraph Magazine earlier this year - harped on about its speed with the ad’s “Luxury just lost it manners” tagline. 

The full ad as it appeared in the UK Telegraph. The full ad as it appeared in the UK Telegraph.

Their allegation also stated that the ad outlined the M760Li’s performance figures and detailed its awe-inspiring 6.6-litre turbocharged V12 mill, giving the impression that it was condoning irresponsible driving.

Those numbers behind its latest flagship are worth boasting about considering that it is not only BMW’s most powerful production model ever, with a blown V12 pumping out 448kW/800Nm, but it is also its quickest, with a 0-100km/h boast of 3.7 seconds (0.1 seconds quicker than the lighter track-focused M4 GTS).

As such the advertising watchdog has banned BMW from using the ad again, instructing them to “ensure they did not make speed or acceleration the main message of their future marketing communications”.

Both BMW and the publication that ran the ad, The Telegraph, has stepped out in defense of the ad. The Telegraph states that the acceleration figures stated doesn’t exceed the country’s national speed limit, whereas BMW says the phrase “for some, the climb to the top is quicker” would be interpreted by its target audience as merely being better at achieving career success instead of top speed.

Nevertheless, despite their protests the ad still remains banned by both agencies, though BMW has stated that it was a one-off ad with no further plans to reuse it.

This latest ban in the UK won’t come as a surprise to many as its nannying laws on car commercials was once the subject of the below Top Gear segment eight years ago.

We all love a good car advertisement as it adds some colour and identity to both the car and the brand behind it. If anything the watchdog should have given the copywriter a medal for delivering such a cleverly worded ad.

Whats your worst-of uneccessary beurocracy? Tell us what you think in the comments.