Car company Daihatsu is reviewing its &£1.5m advertising account held by Wallis Tomlinson.
The Midlands-based agency has held the Daihatsu business since April last year.
The move is a surprise because the car is imported to the UK by International Motors (IM) and the same ad agency handles its other car brands, Subaru and Isuzu.
The owner of IM, Robert Edmiston, was also previously a shareholder in the agency.
The review is being overseen by Daihatsu marketing director Paul Tunnicliffe, who joined the company last year. Tunnicliffe had been the company’s marketing director six years previously.
A spokesman for Daihatsu says the company is looking for an agency to create advertising for its YRV model in particular. The car is in the super-mini category, a new area for Daihatsu. The company hopes to attract younger buyers.
Wallis Tomlinson picked up the business after Inchcape sold Daihatsu’s UK distribution rights to IM. The advertising account was previously held by Banks Hoggins O’Shea/FCB. IM moved the business out of Banks Hoggins, and slashed the marketing budget from &£5m to &£1.5m.
The pitch will include the incumbent, one other Midlands-based agency and three London agencies.
Earlier this year the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) upheld a complaint against a press ad for the Daihatsu Sirion 1.3SL. The ad was headlined “Quick enough to see off a 1.6 litre VW Polo GTi”.
The execution featured a car in motion, with part of the background blurred. The ASA said the headline encouraged anti-social driving.