BMW radio advertisement banned following complaint of “irresponsible speeding”


In the UK, apparently, radio spot regulations for car manufacturers prohibit the sound of a running engine. BMW’s M brand felt the sting of this rule this week when one of its ads was banned by the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) in the UK, which governs advertising and holds responsible. And, in this case, which ads are not.

All it took was one complaint to the ASA that the ad was irresponsible, UK reported Express. The regulatory group agreed, and it was officially withdrawn.

According to the Express, the ad begins with a BMW engine revving up, then an announcer says, “We could use big words like punchy, muscular, or captivating to tell you what it looks like. what it looks like. But all that. you really want to hear, it’s this. ”Then the engine spins again, louder this time. (I tried to find a copy of the radio spot because I wanted to hear it myself, to no avail.)

Article 20.1 of the ASA states that automotive advertisements “must not encourage dangerous, competitive, reckless or irresponsible driving or motorcycling.” Advertisements should not suggest that riding or motorcycling safely is stuffy or boring. Is the noise of accelerating within speed limits inherently dangerous? Ask a friend.

Rule 20.3 goes further: “Automotive advertisements must not demonstrate power, acceleration or handling characteristics, except in a clear safety context. Reference to these characteristics should not suggest excitement, aggressiveness or competitiveness. Separately, the ASA states that “automotive advertisements should not refer to speed in a way that would condone or encourage dangerous, competitive, reckless or irresponsible riding or motorcycling. Factual statements about the speed or acceleration of a vehicle are permitted but should not be presented as a reason to prefer the advertised vehicle. Claims of speed or acceleration should not be the primary selling message of an advertisement.

It’s a bit of a strict set of guidelines for a performance brand.

the Express reported that BMW attempted to mount a defense of its announcement that the revving sound lasts less than a second and was recorded when the car was stationary. It did not help his case, and the ASA upheld their decision.

For the record, I find the acceleration noises exciting; if you’re reading this, there’s a good chance you will, too. Hearing it on the radio doesn’t make me want to race my personal SUV on the highway, but the rules are the rules. If Boris Johnson implements his plan to ban new diesel and gasoline cars by 2030, the sound of an electric whine will replace the roar of an ICE anyway, I guess. That does not reassure me.

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