Hot new ad campaign: Our cars’ emissions are so clean, you can’t even kill yourself with them

posted at 6:01 pm on April 26, 2013 by Allahpundit

If you’re looking for background, Business Insider and the Blaze have got you covered. Hyundai thought it’d be clever to illustrate how clean their fuel-cell vehicle is by showing a guy trying and failing to off himself via the exhaust, even though other car manufacturers have used the same gimmick. A copywriter in Britain whose father killed himself using the same method (with a traditional vehicle) wrote a blog post criticizing the ad; people took notice, pressure built, and Hyundai ended up apologizing and yanking it. Naturally, news of the forbidden commercial began circulating online and now websites in the U.S. are picking it up to rubberneck at a PR trainwreck, which may or may not inadvertently help Hyundai move units. Tasteless though it may be, the spot’s effective. If the goal of advertising is to make the viewer remember one’s product and what makes it unique, mission accomplished.

Consider this an improvement, in fact, over environmental-minded ads of yesteryear. I’m old to enough remember when global-warming activists thought it’d be keen to raise awareness by showing kids getting blown up for failing to reduce their carbon footprint. Now we’ve got depressed people’s lives being saved by the absence of carbon monoxide in their exhaust. Messaging status: Refined.


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If the goal of advertising is to make the viewer remember one’s product and what makes it unique, mission accomplished.

Yeah, but enough people get pissed about it, you don’t want them to remember.

GarandFan on April 26, 2013 at 6:04 PM

It’s suicidal to get a Hyundai

That’s a winning slogan.

rbj on April 26, 2013 at 6:08 PM

I thought it was morbidly funny.

p0s3r on April 26, 2013 at 6:10 PM

I thought the ad was for Fiskar.

arnold ziffel on April 26, 2013 at 6:13 PM

I thought it was morbidly funny.

p0s3r on April 26, 2013 at 6:10 PM

Yes, but the message is: Own a Hyundai and you too can be suicidally depressed.

Fenris on April 26, 2013 at 6:14 PM

hahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha

Rode Werk on April 26, 2013 at 6:17 PM

I get it. You’re far more likely to die in one of these little cars in a wreck than from its emissions.

Not enough money in the world to get me in one of them, and I don’t care what comes out of their exhaust.

TXUS on April 26, 2013 at 6:18 PM

Hot new ad campaign: Our cars’ emissions are so clean, you can’t even kill yourself with them

Well then, those with suicidal tendencies have a reason to not buy the car.

rukiddingme on April 26, 2013 at 6:21 PM

snickersnee, snickersnak

Jeddite on April 26, 2013 at 6:33 PM

Aw, God, I have to trade in my car now….

ladyingray on April 26, 2013 at 6:38 PM

This comes form a part of the world in Europe where suicide is not seen as bad thing to do. It can be done for any reason even depression and with a doctors help. Even killing ones self and pre-born to save the planet is even a noble goal.

It would have been better ad on a true electric car with no exhaust. Not a fuel cell electric. He had everything ready like flash to a suicide note in car but when he is looking for the pipe to tape the hose to he can not find it. Have him look in frustration under the back, front, under the hood even take off a tire looking for it and then in the end have him grab the note leave and toss it in the trash before he goes inside.

tjexcite on April 26, 2013 at 6:38 PM

Great tools in the garage, a brand new fuel cell car…

I can see why the guy would want to commit suicide — he’d done everything on his bucket list.

unclesmrgol on April 26, 2013 at 6:45 PM

Who cares if a few people are upset. The only thing that needs to be used to determine if an ad is good or bad, is how well does the ad work? Unless we are to believe that a majority of the population is somehow equally “bad”, and therefore a successful ad can still be “wrong” somehow, then there is no need for a company to pull the ad because a few people complain.

keep the change on April 26, 2013 at 6:46 PM

On the other hand, a Chevy Volt will really burn you…

locomotivebreath1901 on April 26, 2013 at 6:56 PM

As those last few incremental PPM’s of HC and CO are eliminated from vehicle exhausts, the stress of the cost increases encountered by the consumer for those near-zero emission vehicles will cause more deaths than there ever would be from breathing the exhaust.

Another Drew on April 26, 2013 at 7:08 PM

Great tools in the garage, a brand new fuel cell car…

I can see why the guy would want to commit suicide — he’d done everything on his bucket list.

unclesmrgol on April 26, 2013 at 6:45 PM

On my bucket list: Being able to run off the road (without casualty or getting caught) cars like this one and, in addition, Volts, Priuses, Fiskers, etc., and of course all Volvos, the last one just because. Won’t happen, because I wouldn’t want to risk damage to my Ford truck, but a boy can dream.

TXUS on April 26, 2013 at 7:23 PM

Our cars’ emissions are so clean, you can’t even kill yourself with them

Frankly, not even among the top ten selling points for me to buy. And I dunno…..in the traditional method in death by carbon monoxide, yes…but don’t sell those with suicidal tendencies short, they can be quite creative. Where there is a will there is a way, alas.

hawkeye54 on April 26, 2013 at 8:30 PM

Fuel cells? Who cares, I want a flying car, or at least a self-driving car, I couldn’t care less about this crap.

Ars Moriendi on April 26, 2013 at 8:51 PM

It’s suicidal to get a Hyundai

That’s a winning slogan.

rbj on April 26, 2013 at 6:08 PM

Nah, the Audi 5000 is THE car for suicidal people. Remember?

Myron Falwell on April 26, 2013 at 8:52 PM

Fuel cells? Who cares, I want a flying car, or at least a self-driving car, I couldn’t care less about this crap.

Ars Moriendi on April 26, 2013 at 8:51 PM

Flying cars are on the way.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-4eEVhoohtI

Axion on April 27, 2013 at 12:08 AM

Even with a modern car with an IC engine it is much more difficult to accomplish this type of suicide nowadays. Modern emission controls are very good at removing CO from the exhaust. If the engine kept running it would eventually consume enough of the O2 in the garage to asphyxiate you, but that would likely occur before enough CO built up to kill you by carbon monoxide poisoning. I’m not sure how much O2 in the air is necessary to keep a modern engine running, but I suspect it’s less than what a human needs to keep going, although I’m not quite ready to try that experiment just yet. Of course, with the prospect of more than 3 1/2 years of listening to the Bamster droning out his banal nonsense every day there may be quite a few folks looking for the easiest way to take the easy way out

djaces on April 27, 2013 at 12:34 AM

What is it with these ecofreaks and their death obsession?

RebeccaH on April 27, 2013 at 10:58 AM

Really smart to target the suicidally depressed demographic. Resale numbers should skyrocket.

Wait…

Freelancer on April 28, 2013 at 2:39 AM