News - Nissan
Nissan fined over TV ad
Dualis “Paintball” commercial deemed to have misled consumers over prices
4 Dec 2012
NISSAN Australia has been forced to pay $19,800 in fines over a TV commercial deemed to have been misleading.
The company has accepted the breach and paid three infringement notices issued by the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC).
The competition watchdog found that the “Paintball” advertisement for the Nissan Dualis – which was adapted from an acclaimed French-made commercial for the vehicle, which is sold in Europe as the Qashqai – did not properly reflect the car’s pricing and features.
A silver Dualis Ti was featured racing through a city avoiding giant paintballs, but the driveaway price displayed applied only to a red lesser-spec ST model at the end of the ad.
The ACCC charged that the advertisement did not reflect the $4700 price difference to the Ti, which included optional extras such as metallic paint, panoramic sunroof and leather upholstery.
Nissan ran the advertisement on its YouTube channel, on Foxtel’s Lifestyle channel, in cinemas and in shopping centres between August 7 last year and April 10 this year. It has since been removed from the YouTube site.
ACCC chairman Rod Sims said an advertisement which features a vehicle with optional extras but only promotes the driveaway price for a base model is prone to mislead consumers.
“Traders must ensure that consumers are not misled about the price of advertised goods,” said Mr Sims.
“We have received a number of complaints about this type of advertising, and we need to ensure advertising standards are maintained.
“Following an investigation into the advertising practices of the motor vehicle industry in 2010, the ACCC is continuing to monitor traders to ensure advertising standards within the industry remain high.
“Nissan has cooperated with the ACCC’s investigation and this outcome should send a warning to the motor vehicle industry as a whole.”
An ACCC statement said Nissan has acknowledged that the advertisement was likely to have contravened the Australian Consumer Law, and accepted a court-enforceable undertaking to publish a corrective notice in The Australian and review its trade practices compliance program to ensure that this type of conduct does not occur again.
Nissan Australia issued a statement accepting the ACCC ruling.
“Nissan Australia has worked closely with the ACCC in agreeing to these undertakings, and we take our advertising obligations very seriously,” the company said.
“We will fully comply with the undertakings we have given to the ACCC to ensure that the way that we advertise our great products continues to be clear and accurate.”
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