BMW xDrive TV advert pulled after single complaint

ASA bans TV advertisement showcasing BMW’s four-wheel-drive system on the grounds it condoned dangerous driving.

A TV commercial produced by BMW, promoting the marque’s xDrive four-wheel-drive system, has been banned from airing after the Advertising Standards Authority declared that it ‘condoned faster, dangerous and irresponsible driving’.

> BMW X5 review

Subscribe to evo magazine

evo is 21 and to celebrate, we're returning to 1998 prices! Subscribe now to SAVE 39% on the shop price and get evo for its original cover price of £3.00 an issue, plus get a FREE gift worth £25!

A complaint filed by a member of the public forced the ASA to investigate the advertisement, titled ‘Get out there’. Pointing to the upbeat backing track (Blur’s Song 2), extreme driving environments and outdoor activities featured in the advert, the ASA concluded the ‘succession of short, fast-paced scenes gave the impression that the cars were being driven at a considerable speed’.

Based on the above findings, the ASA deemed the advert in breach of advertising code rules and thus ordered it to be removed from the air. BMW estimates the advert was viewed 9.3 million times, however only one complaint – the one resulting in the advert’s demise – was received by the ASA.

Advertisement
Advertisement - Article continues below

A compilation of scenes demonstrated BMW xDrive-equipped models tackling a variety of (off-road) terrains. The ASA marked out a specific moment, where a BMW X5 was shown skidding on a sodden muddy track, that provided cause to ban the ad. BMW argued the ASA’s description of ‘skidding’ was incorrect, saying ‘the term “skid” suggested that the driver had lost control of the car, which did not occur during the ad’.

BMW added: ‘The ad did not show the cars skidding, but a slight reduction in traction, which highlighted the technical capability of the xDrive system to react to a change in grip on each wheel.’

Following its ruling the ASA told BMW ‘not to demonstrate handling characteristics in the context of excitement’ in future adverts.

Advertisement

Recommended

Visit/bmw/201827/bmw-m-performance-parts-pricing-availability-and-range
BMW

BMW M Performance parts: pricing, availability and range

12 Dec 2019
Visit/bmw/201850/bmw-design-and-the-sorry-slide-from-quiet-confidence-to-muddled-mediocrity
BMW

'The sorry slide from quiet confidence to muddled mediocrity'

15 Oct 2019
Visit/bmw/201608/bmw-4-series-coupe-spied-munich-to-downsize-8-series-formula-next-year
BMW

BMW 4-series Coupe spied – Munich to downsize 8-series formula next year

13 Aug 2019
Visit/bmw/22869/2020-bmw-m4-cabriolet-spied-our-first-look-at-the-next-gen-m-car
BMW

2020 BMW M4 Cabriolet spied

10 Jul 2019
Advertisement

Most Popular

Visit/toyota/yaris/201932/toyota-gr-yaris-revealed-in-full-return-of-the-homologation-special
Toyota Yaris

Toyota GR Yaris revealed in full – return of the homologation special

One of most sought after hot hatchbacks of 2020 has finally been revealed: the Toyota GR Yaris
10 Jan 2020
Visit/honda/civic-type-r/202099/new-2020-honda-civic-type-r-makes-debut-at-tokyo-auto-salon
Honda Civic Type-R

New 2020 Honda Civic Type R makes debut at Tokyo Auto Salon

Honda has released the first images of the revised Civic Type R that’s being shown for the first time in Tokyo
10 Jan 2020
Visit/bmw/x3/202087/bmw-x3-m-2020-review-the-right-ingredients-in-a-very-wrong-package
BMW X3

BMW X3 M 2020 review – the right ingredients in a very wrong package

The first BMW X3 M previews the next BMW M3’s all-new powertrain, let's hope it doesn’t preview anything else
8 Jan 2020
Visit/hyundai/201819/hyundai-i30-fastback-n-versus-the-nurburgring
Hyundai i30 N

Hyundai i30 Fastback N versus the Nurburgring

We brought the Hyundai i30 Fastback back to its spiritual home in Germany's Eifel mountains, where there is a racing track you might well have heard o…
7 Oct 2019