Tim Longhurst's Blog

Toyota ‘eggs on’ aggressive drivers

April 26th, 2005 · No Comments

toyotasmash.jpgWhat ethics are being applied when a car company celebrates the driving mentality usually encouraged by ultra-violent video games like Carmageddon?

Dr Henrik Ziegler has written an open letter to Toyota Australia about their new ute advertising campaign. Key points of the letter include:

-The new slogan, “Get in, or get out of the way” goads people to drive aggressively. Aggressive driving is no joke: around two thousand people are killed on Australian roads every year.

– The campaign is analogous to someone selling a shovel by extolling the virtues of bashing people over the head with one – – “Intimidating styling”, “aggressive bonnet scoop”, “dominating moulded front bumpers..”

Significantly, the letter finds conflict in Toyota’s rhetoric and reality:

– Does this campaign fit in with Toyota’s “2010 global vision”? “Respect for all people”? “Comfort of life”? If this is the corporate image Toyota’s aiming for, how does a belligerent, lowest-common-denominator campaign aimed at playing on and encouraging aggressive driver behaviour constitute a move in this direction?

Will be interesting to see Toyota’s response…

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Category: Corporate craziness