Back in January, Opel came out with a viral for their new Tigra TwinTop by McCann Erickson and MRM Partners (www.mrmworldwide.com . Recently they released a new 30-second viral promoting Opel's Astra GTC. This one is a rather reminiscent of the FordKa virals from 2003 for Ford's EvilTwin SportKA that was deemed too evil for killing a pigeon and the Ford KA Cat decapitation ad from 2004. Both ads got raised eyebrows and a lot of noise by animal groups. And this time is no different.
The new Opel ad has been criticised by the RSPCA for the treatment of a dog, being used as a washcloth to clean up bird doodoo off the hood. At the end he throws the dog out the window of the car. The tagline for the spot is "Men's new best friend" and was created by McCann Erickson.
Brand Republic's Digital Bulletin reports that unlike Ford, which denied the approval of the concept, General Motors is standing by its ad.
"No animal was hurt in the making of this ad. We certainly did not set out to offend anyone," the company said.
The RSPCA said: "Though trying to be clever, this is sick advertising that tries to use a faithful pet as a throw-away gimmick. It sends a brutal, couldn't-care-less message to sell a car. Just last month, the RSPCA heard of a case in Middlewich, Cheshire where three kittens were thrown out of a car window and died.
"The RSPCA will be writing to the Advertising Standards Authority and Vauxhall Motors about the ad. We hope anybody considering buying Opel-Vauxall car products will do so too."