The quickest pickup truck currently on sale in Australia has fallen foul of advertising regulators.
An advertisement for the Ram 1500 TRX has been pulled from air by the Ad Standards Community Panel on the back of community complaints.
The ad shows the supercharged 1500 TRX pickup driving on dunes, splashing through puddles, and blasting along a gravel track, as the owner tries to show a friend why he needs such a powerful truck.
Snippets from those complaints featured in the Ad Standards panel report are include:
- “The potential for damage to drivers, passengers, cars and the environment is very real. This is not a safe
demonstration of a responsible driver and sets an extremely bad example.”
- “driving a heavy, fuel guzzling vehicle in this way, just for fun, is environmentally unsound for resource wastage as well as damage to the land it is travelling over”
- “It is pretty vile, advocates excessive power and aggression in driving. Look, the dodge [sic] ram towing a huge trailer up a steep hill or pulling a bogged vehicle out would have been cool actually, but this ad is really gross the way it tries to appeal to already aggressive people and their driving behaviours, which is the opposite of what we need, for our planet and for us as humans.”
In response, Ram Trucks Australia told the Ad Standards panel it “does not encourage anyone to drive in a reckless and/or unsafe manner, or in any way which violates any road or driving related laws”.
“Accordingly, we respectfully disagree with the complainants’ characterisation of the Advertisement in such a way,” it said.
Although the panel did not agree with all complainants, it said the ad – which has been on air since late in 2022 – portrayed unsafe driving, and “deliberate and significant environmental damage”.
Ram will be forced to re-cut the advertisement if it plans to run it again.
It isn’t the first carmaker to have advertisements pulled for seemingly insignificant ‘indiscretions’.
Ford was forced to re-cut its first Ranger Raptor ad because of what a complainant dubbed “ultra-fast acceleration”, and Volkswagen’s tongue-in-cheek ‘Too Powerful for TV’ commercial for the Amarok was modified after falling foul of regulators.
The FCAI in 2018 promised to review automotive advertising standards on the back of persistent complaints from a long-time road-safety activist.