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Ford's Indian ad agency dreams of kidnapping the Kardashians

3 scandalous print ads showed up online late last week, although the automaker says it never approved them.

By Clifford Atiyeh Mar 25, 2013 1:03PM
Advertising agencies would like to think they're smarter than their clients, but sometimes the world doesn't buy their baloney.

Hence, JWT, yet another New York ad agency with yet another neon blue couch in a hip office staffed by young urban professionals who know next to nothing, has royally messed up its account with Ford.

Somehow, drafts leaked out of JWT's Indian office in Mumbai late last week that showed illustrated women -- bound, gagged and stuffed in the trunk of a Ford Figo, a popular subcompact car -- with extra-large breasts and skimpy clothing. The tagline: "Leave your worries behind with Figo's extra-large boot." On closer inspection, the women are actually the Kardashian sisters, and Paris Hilton is riding in the driver's seat, head cocked backward and winking.

A second ad shows three more exaggerated women -- one in a leather "police" outfit, another dressed like a skimpy schoolgirl -- with Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi showing a peace sign. A third ad binds up some guys -- specifically Formula 1 drivers Fernando Alonso, Lewis Hamilton and Sebastian Vettel -- with seven-time world champion Michael Schumacher up front.

Needless to say, themes of kidnapping, assault and sexual perversion, even as cartoon characters, aren't really the hallmarks of a major global automaker. With India still recovering from a brutal gang rape and murder of a young woman in December, the timing is a bit worse for wear.

In a statement to Business Insider, which broke the story, Ford said that it was "deeply" sorry and that the ads were "contrary to the standards of professionalism and decency within Ford and our agency partners." Ford said the ads were never approved or commissioned for print. But a team at JWT posted the ads online to the website Ads of the World, Business Insider said; they have since been removed. JWT said the ads "should never have been created, let alone uploaded to the Internet."

The ad agency is responsible for Ford's advertisements in one of the largest developing markets in the world, a country in which Ford has invested billions in new factories in order to achieve worldwide annual sales of 8 million cars in just two years.

But hey, at least they didn't use an image of Hitler, as many overseas ad agencies have done.

[Source: Business Insider]
Mar 25, 2013 3:52PM

This ad agency should be fired immediately.


I can think of many more appealing women to kidnap than the pig sisters......I mean Kardouchians!

Mar 25, 2013 2:46PM
I want to have the one with  Berlusconi and the hot chicks in ball gags printed out really large and use if for garage art!
Mar 26, 2013 10:22AM
Don't forget that these ads are from JWT's Indian office. You know, the country where women are considered less valuable than men, and rapes occur in broad daylight, in full view of the public. Why is it that people are surprised when a bunch of Indians come up with this sick, misogynist crap?
This makes me want a Ford even more. Great reliability and space to kidnap and kill stupid reality TV stars. The ppl that made this ad should be put up for sainthood. They are doing the worlds good, getting rid of these wastes of ppl. I doubt the reasoning behind it was malicious to Ford. They were brainstorming how to get rid of idiot famous persons and just happened to have a great Ford vehicle with the reliability to not break down and enough space to not have to make more than one trip. 
Jul 7, 2013 12:23AM
I imagine an ad executive at the meeting: "But hey, at least we didn't use Hitler."

And these guys are making the big bucks? Sheesh.

Mar 25, 2013 1:47PM
You're a real class act Ford. Maybe your new slogan should be: Cheap women love cheap cars!
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