International Women\'s Day special, part 1: Sexist car ads

Selling cars through political incorrectness
by Vernon B. Sarne | Mar 8, 2012

Today, March 8, is International Women\'s Day. We honor our beloved mothers, wives, sisters, daughters and female friends by declaring our strong disapproval of the most sexist car ads ever foisted upon the car-buying public.

1. Citroen Dyane ad. It says that if you ever get caught driving a sensible but boring car, you can always just say the car belongs to your wife. Because, we presume, women don\'t have \"good taste\" when it comes to automobiles.



2. Dodge Viper SRT10 ad. Yes, Dodge needs to say more, because we\'re not really sure what this ad is saying. Are they advising old men to have fun by buying a sports car and marrying a hot, young woman? Or are they telling women that rich geriatrics make for nice husbands because the latter would most likely die within two months of their wedding, leaving the women a handsome little fortune? Either way, it\'s bad.

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3. Fiat 1200 Spider and 600 ad. At first glance, the ad looks cute. Fiat seems to be merely selling its convertible to men and its compact cruiser to women. But the copy for the 600 says: \"The Fiat 600 is everyone\'s ideal car, perfect for scooting to the supermarket, dropping the kids off at school, or taking the whole family to grandma\'s for the weekend.\" Tell that to modern-day female CEOs.


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4. Fisker Karma ad. For some reason, automotive marketers have always tried to associate \"pure driving passion\" with having sex with a hot-looking woman. We\'re not sure about that, because we\'ve found that either one could be truly overrated, depending on whom you ask.



5. Kia Sportage ad. We know Kia is simply selling the Sportage\'s dual-zone air-conditioning system here. Too bad they had to use the damsel-needs-saving (and possibly ravaging) theme.


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6. Mercedes-Benz Brake Assist Plus ad. As far as the German carmaker is concerned, female drivers have the worst reaction time at the wheel. Hence, their need for a brake-assist electronic aid. Show this ad to Danica Patrick and she\'ll gladly show you what a fast reaction time looks like.



7. Mini Test Drives ad. Mini thinks it\'s always cool to come out of left field. Shock everyone, its marketing mantra probably dictates. They pull it off most of the time, we admit. But this ad that is supposedly meant to encourage customers to test-drive Mini cars is just off. It\'s just wrong on so many levels--whether you\'re a cop or a stripper.


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8. Subaru GL Coupe ad. Women yearn to be tamed? Sure.



9. Volkswagen Parts ad. This ad says husbands should buy a vehicle from a brand that has a reputation for making parts replacement a breeze, because their wives will almost certainly wreck the car. We\'ve figured in a few fender-benders in this life, none of which involved a lady driver.


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10. Volkswagen Golf ad. Okay, this one looks really funny. And there lies the problem: Why should we laugh at an image that suggests women in general suck at parallel-parking? While it\'s true that many females lack parking skills, so do many men.


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