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Slap on the wrist for Ford over Bond ad

Ford has been told by the Advertising Standards Agency that it cannot show its Ford Focus Zetec Climate advert in its current form because it gave ‘misleading impressions’.

The TV ad, for the Ford Focus Zetec Climate (shown below), features footage from the new James Bond film 'Casino Royale' interspersed with shots of the car.

Two viewers said the ad was misleading because it mainly showed the Ford Mondeo, which they said was due to be released in 2007 and appeared in the film 'Casino Royale', but ended by showing the Focus Zetec Climate. The viewers said the ad misleadingly implied that the Focus Zetec Climate was used in the film 'Casino Royale'.

Ford said the ad was not misleading and said it promoted Ford's link with the film 'Casino Royale'.

The ASA acknowledged that Ford and Sony/Eon had a contract which involved running a series of promotions linking Ford cars with the film 'Casino Royale' and also noted the final scene of the ad showed the Focus Zetec Climate, with on-screen text identifying it as such, alongside a specific price.

However, the ASA said it was not clear that the car that appeared in shots interspersed with footage from the film was different from the car identified at the end of the ad and that viewers were likely to believe that only one car was being advertised throughout the whole ad.

The ASA said: "We considered that, because of the difficulty in differentiating between the two cars, the ad was likely to give the misleading impression that the Focus Zetec Climate was used in the film 'Casino Royale', which could make it more attractive to some viewers.

"The ad breached CAP (broadcast) TV Advertising Standards Code rules 5.1 (Misleading advertising), 5.2.2 (Implications) and 5.4.1 (Visual techniques and special effects) and it must not be broadcast again in its current form."

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