Volkswagen Under Fire for Super Bowl Ad

The car company's 60-second commercial has been criticized as racist.

Posted: 01/29/2013 04:26 PM EST
Volkswagen Under Fire for Super Bowl Ad

A Volkswagen car commercial set to air during Sunday's Super Bowl game has been touted as racist for featuring white actors speaking with Jamaican accents. The criticism stems from the stereotype that Caribbean residents are always happy and stress-free.

The ad begins in a crowded elevator full of grumpy employees complaining about Mondays, save for one man who assures the rest that "everything will be alright" in a Jamaican accent. He then proceeds to give out doses of "don't worry, be happy" sentiments to his coworkers before inviting them along on a drive in his new Volkswagen Beetle. Once inside, the other actors adopt a similar accent and return to work feeling relaxed.

While some find the ad offensive, others have come to the company's defense saying it reminds them of happy vacations to Caribbean islands.

Volkswagen, which reportedly paid $8 million to air the ad during the Super Bowl game, also defended its actions by saying the ad was tested with 100 Jamaicans and had a dialect coach on set.

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(Photo: Volkswagon via YouTube)

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