James Patterson Lexus speeding ad banned again despite changes

A Lexus LC ad has been outlawed for the second time, after the ad watchdog concluded the modified changes to the ad “are not evident” and the “impression of speed” is still a major part of the commercial.

The original ad created by M&C Saatchi featured a written review by author James Patterson and showed a car driving quickly down a road after showing the speedometer rapidly increasing from 78 to 87km/h.

The modified advertisment

In August, the ad was banned for promoting both “illegal” and “dangerous” activity with the board concluding “the overall tone of the advertisement was of power and speed and that the speed the vehicle was travelling was too fast for the roads it was driving along”.

In a new ruling, a complaint said to the Ad Standards Board: “I have complained about this ad before as have others as we had our complaint upheld that it breached the rules but Lexus could appeal that which they have done and won because I just saw the ad again.

“Please tell me what is the point of all this? If the rules are broken they are broken if I don’t stop at a stop sign and get fined by the police I can’t appeal that a rule is a rule no grey area a stop sign means I must bring the car to a stop an ad brakes a rule it must stop how did it get back on the air?”

Responding to its second complaint for the same ad, Lexus said the commercial was filmed in controlled conditions and emphasised that the ad which was in question was in fact the modified ad.

“Lexus feel confident that modifications made addressed the concerns raised by the ASB,” Lexus stated.

The car company agreed to make further modifications before buying any more air time.

The original ad

The Ad Standards Board said the modified ad still shows the speedometer climbing and the car piking up dust as it speeds off in the final frame.

“The changes to the advertisement are not evident and the impression of speed was still a major part of the feel of the advertisement.

“The overall tone of the advertisement was of power and speed and that the speed the vehicle was travelling looked to be too fast for the roads it was driving along. In the Board’s view the accumulative effect gives the impression that the vehicle can and was travelling at excessive speeds and was therefore driving unsafely,” the Board said upholding the complaint.

Lexus said the modified ad will not include scenes of the car stirring up dust and dirt or “the vehicles progression down country roads (including with the woman looking on with awe) and through the tunnel”.


Get the latest media and marketing industry news (and views) direct to your inbox.

Sign up to the free Mumbrella newsletter now.



Sign up to our free daily update to get the latest in media and marketing.