Audi has been criticised for an advert in China, which thousands of internet users have branded sexist.The ad compares buying a car to finding a wife, saying “an important decision must be made carefully”.It shows a woman having her nose, ears and teeth inspected by her mother-in-law on her wedding day.An Audi spokesman told the South China Morning Post marketing in China was the responsibility of its local joint venture partner.Some are calling for a boycott of the German carmaker – which is recognised as one of the big three in China, along with Mercedes Benz and BMW.One user called it “a terrible ad!” with others branding it “disgusting”. “I will not buy an Audi in this lifetime,” one user says, and another calls it “disastrous marketing”.
Many said that a male focus group must have decided it was worth running with. “From the inception of this idea to its broadcasting, was there a single woman who worked on this commercial?”, asked one Weibo user.Because the mother-in-law gives her permission to her son to marry the bride, the advert has also generated debate about contemporary marital values. It is just the latest commercial to cause a backlash in China.Last year a Chinese firm apologised over an advert for detergent in which a black man was stuffed head-first into a washing machine before emerging as a light-skinned Asian.The manufacturer of Qiaobi said it strongly opposed and condemned racial discrimination, and was sorry the advert had caused controversy.