Michelin ad promising to save fuel banned by ASA

A TV ad for Michelin car tyres featuring the Michelin Man and claiming to “help to save up to 80 litres of fuel” has been banned by the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) for being misleading.

Michelin ad
Michelin ad

The, created by TBWA, shows the Michelin Man as a superhero, saving a town “held captive by an evil gas pump” that feeds “on people’s hard earned money.” In the advert, a giant gas pump terrorizes a town, sucking up drivers’ cash, until the icon saves the day by pelting the villainous pump with tires he pulls out of his body.The voice-over stated “there was a town held captive by an evil fuel pump … but along came the Michelin man, who reminded them the right tyre changes everything … Michelin EnergySaver can help to save up to 80 litres of fuel”.

Viewers challenged whether the claim “can help to save up to 80 litres of fuel” was misleading, because the ad did not specify what period of time the claim related to. The ad triggered 15 complaints.

Michelin Tyre said the ad had been cleared by Clearcast as acceptable for broadcast.

The ASA ruled that although most viewers would understand that the claim “save up to 80 litres of fuel” related to a significant period of time, the ad should have made it clear that it was over the life of the tyre. Because the ad did not state the period of time the claim related to, the ASA concluded it was misleading.

This story first appeared on pitch

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