Apparently, truck drivers are more thin-skinned than one might assume.
Hours after the first airing of a new Mercedes-Benz spot, which playfully refers to "mean old truckers out hogging the street," angry drivers were on the phone to Freightliner, the nation's largest producer of big trucks, which is also owned by Mercedes parent company, Daimler-Benz.
Mercedes has pulled the 60-second spot (shown here), called "My Dad." The ad's story is told from the viewpoint of an infant who feels secure in the back of an M-Class sport utility vehicle, despite the obstacles he and his father encounter. The automaker's agency, Lowe & Partners/SMS, New York, is reworking the spot and it should be back on the air soon, said Donna Boland, Mercedes' director of public relations.
"We were really surprised to hear the negative reaction to the ad," she said. "We don't create these things, obviously, with the intention of offending anyone. But on the other hand, you can't anticipate everything. The ad is a tongue-in-cheek depiction of safety we figured that people would understand that." --Tanya Gazdik