Volvo Courts Controversy with New Ad

January 27, 2010


[Apologies for the lack of new content or interaction. Should be back in the proverbial saddle soon. Until then, enjoy this one from way, way back. The 2nd post ever here at Fancy Plans, which is mainly an Inspiral Carpets joke wrapped in a very pale Onion skin… Originally published Jan. 8, 2009.]

Volvo is placing an edgy series of ads in top magazines around the world to tout their legendary safety record. Ad team spokesman Graham Lambert says he realizes the ads may be controversial, but that, much like with the 2-4 year age group, any attention is good attention:

“If we’re looking to stand out as a car company that has cornered one facet of the market, the copy has got to be striking. Faced with crumbling economies and a worldwide slump in spending, Volvo needs to remind people that their vehicles are still the market leader in safety.”

Ad copy reads:

“If your life and the lives of your loved ones are truly our greatest riches, then placing your family into the new Volvo is the equivalent of stashing your actual riches in the rectal cavity of a rabid pit bull. And if an offset headon collision is the equivalent of attempted theft, you can be sure that other party involved will be significantly damaged. Either way, you’ll be able to metaphorically walk away and say, “Yeah, you should see the other guy.”

Volvo is no stranger to controversy, having weathered earlier attacks stemming from leaked information relating to animal testing. The leaked documents alleged that crash tests vehicles were being stuffed with rabbits before being launched head on into walls, other vehicles and over cliffs.

PETA first raised the alarm several months ago and began holding protests outside Volvo testing facilities and a call to boycott Swedish meatballs and IKEA furniture. They also released a statement asking that the testing stop until it could be done humanely, preferably using actual live humans. PETA provided a list of paintbombed C-list celebrities to use as replacement dummies, including known Thetan Tom Cruise.

Volvo’s safety team fired back with a press release of their own:

The statements issued by PETA and other animal rights groups are false and based on bad information. Contrary to the claim that rabbits were “packed in,” they, in fact, had plenty of room to move about the cabin and passenger areas due to the ample legroom and headspace. In fact, they had nearly 3 cu.ft. more space than our nearest competitor’s sedan.
The claims that a majority of rabbits involved were damaged during the tests is also false. While a lot of the subjects were subjected to trauma due to the force involved, this has no reflection to our safety record in relation to actual human beings.
Unless your family consists of septuplet infants and/or it resembles a clown car full of midgets when you disembark, the results based on rabbit-testing would have no practical bearing on your family’s safety. If your family does resemble this, perhaps an airport shuttle van, small bus or converted limousine would be a more practical choice.
The most practical decision would be to turn your freakishly huge family into shut-ins and thus avoid embarrassment for yourself and others due to the logistical nightmare that is your offspring. Most people would be appreciative of yet another ho-hum day at the mall without having to feel amazement or pity at the sight of your own personal Village of the Damned brood, not to mention the head strain of extrapolating the percentages involved in a successful septuplet delivery.



  1. “safe as fuck” i love it. They know their target market? Coservative middle-aged people with families? They are the ones that want to hear about jamming shit up dog’s asses?

    Either way its funny

    Check out the blog


    • The middle-aged people don’t want to hear it, but the edgier 18-30 year olds do. Except for the jamming shit up dogs’ asses. Everyone wants to here that.

  2. Brilliant then; brilliant now. Great humor!

    • Thanks, Dan. This was all shortly after I discovered the Onion had no “Submit” button. This is the product of deeply misplaced disillusionment.

  3. Canary yellow with limo tint? Cooler than Jersey.

    • It was all part of a horrific lab accident involving a taxi and a limo, which mixed badly with Volvo’s “safe as fuck” boringness. Hence the rollover.

  4. ‘Safe as Fuck’ is a genius slogan and would work exceptionally well in my old Italian/Irish neighborhood. Everything was ‘something as fuck.’

    Please tell me the rabbits made it out ok?

    You are funny as fuck!

    • There is hardly any word in the English language that can’t be modified with “as fuck.” If there is, I’m certainly not aware of it, nor do I care to be. I’m obtuse as fuck.

      The rabbits were fine. They had all copulated during their combined rocket-sled-like ride into the unforgiving cinderblock wall. It resulted in a net gain for the rabbit population.

  5. Reminds me of the clandestine meetings I used to have with a paranoid psychiatrist. I made rounds for him in the boarding homes and did his Baker Acting (involuntary hospitalizations) and worked as a supervisor in a psych hospital (and STILL found time to pop ecstasy and drink myself into oblivion). We met every few weeks in his Volvo (sorry, but I can’t help noticing how the brand is just two vowels away from vulva…could there be a condom called Volvo in the offing…also captioned “safe as fuck!”). We met for the express purpose of trading ‘smut/gossip’ (his idea, NOT mine). I was expected to “rat out” everyone and had to learn to divulge just enough and still maintain discretion. To this day, I have an urge to confess whenever I am near a Vulvo.

    • Well, this picture must have triggered your insta-confessional, e3. Nothing like travelling clandestinely with a paranoid psychiatrist. It reminds me of everything I don’t trust about psychiatry.

      I think you’re on to something with the condoms.
      – Safe as fuck fucking with Trojan
      – Trojan: fuck safely, fuckers
      – New wallet-sized Trojans: keep you and your money safe as fuck

      and so on…

  6. yes yes and more yes i couldn’t agree more from every angle.
    The volvo press release is ridiculous I can’t believe they said that but it is what needed to be said. I thought it was hilarious honestly.

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