Jeep has found itself in hot water with a US fish conservation group after running an advert showing a new Wrangler bashing its way through a shallow lake and up a waterfall.
Trout Unlimited (no, really) says there was something fishy about the adverts, which it says ‘glorified’ the destruction of fish breeding grounds. The 300,000-member group’s president and CEO, Chris Wood, said:
“Fish are tough and resilient critters, but they don’t do well with several-thousand-pound vehicles driving over their spawning grounds, tearing up the gravel where they lay eggs.
“Why someone would want to put out the idea that you should buy a Jeep so you could drive it up a creek is incomprehensible to me.”
Perhaps “because it’s fun” is the wrong answer for the occasion, or even the wider times we live in. Jeep’s advert, which ran during the recent Super Bowl game, showed a new Wrangler splashing gaily through standing water before effortlessly climbing up the stepped waterfall on the other side of the lake. Environmental concerns aside, it’s quite a good avert.
Fiat Chrysler Automobiles’ head of marketing communication, Diane Morgan, apparently didn’t say exactly where the footage was shot, but claimed it was private land in the US south west.
Clearly, the wilful destruction of wildlife habitats is a sensitive subject, though, whether it’s the Amazon rainforest or a pond in Arizona. Mr Wood added:
“Hopefully something good will come of this and we can begin a dialogue with Jeep to promote smart use of off-road vehicles as well as conservation of natural resources.”