VW Commissions Racist Instagram AD Then Apologises For Being Racist… unbelievable…
Volkswagen has landed itself into the center of a racist controversy of its own making. The company’s surreal advertisement blitz for the new Golf featured a suited man of colour being pushed around by a giant white hand before being flicked into a cafe called Petit Colon. The advertisement is peppered with intentionally racist overtures. The ad targeted Instagram and Facebook users.
The Cafe featured in the background, Petit Colon, translates from French to English and German into “little colonist”. Which is a thinly veiled reference to white supremacy. As the end titles fade-in, it eventually reveals “Der Neue Golf”, harmless enough you might say.
In der neuen #VW-Werbung wird rein zufällig ein schwarzer Mann von einer weißen Hand hin und her geschubst und anschließend in ein Haus mit der Überschrift „petit colon“ geschnipst. Die ersten eingegeben Buchstaben ergeben das N-Wort. Ich könnte kotzen. pic.twitter.com/XnqSM41IIQ— Felix Edeha (@FelixEd93) May 19, 2020
However, as the words fade-in they are arranged in such a way that it briefly spells “neger”, the German slur for the n-word. If Volkswagen thought no one would realise, then they were wrong. The very social media audience VW targeted erupted with anger. VW’s initial response was to feign innocence.
Volkswagen eventually issued an apology when they finally realised the groundswell of anger had grown to such an extent that a forced apology was the only way to stem the bleeding of this self-inflicted wound. But the damage has been done.
Will this racist ad deflate demand for the new Golf? No, regrettably not. However, this racist VW ad gives an insight into the culture at Volkswagen. Volkswagen has made some memorable adverts and on this occasion they have succeeded again.