Audi knows a thing or two about thumbing their nose at the world. The question is if people generally take it in stride or take offense.
Their latest advertising escapade (shown above) is probably one of the more unabashed examples of their cocksure style. A Chicago area Audi dealership sold an R8 GT and decided that moving a single unit was justification to rent a billboard warning other motorists of the possible predator in their rear view mirrors.
Car ads in general have a tendency to play up stereotypes and pander to particular crowds, but what does it say about Audi customers if that rule holds true? Consider this: Volkswagen, their parent company, recently had to pull a TV ad in Canada for their Passat because of complaints that the spot portrayed women in a bad light. Decide for yourself, but realize at the same time that the company, and in some senses the message may be similar.
Truth is, nobody gets hurt when a smug billboard goes up, and Audi does this a lot. Another R8 billboard sported the slogan “stay in school.” Another, perhaps more clever example was an Audi A4 ad in California that read “your move, BMW.” To the right of the Audi poster, BMW ran a response, saying “checkmate.”
One way or another, we’re happy to sit back and watch car companies one-up each other like kids playing chicken at recess.