Sunday, June 26, 2011
Is Subaru Driving Customers Away?
Subaru has always projected itself to be a marque that is hip, fun, and reliable. Part of their appeal has been their progressive ideas when it comes to marketing. They were the first auto maker to be endorsed by an openly gay athlete, and they certainly love sporting women, who remain their target market. Subaru sponsors surf competitions, triathlons, ski events, and was even featured as a sponsor for a marathon on the L Word. But what matters most to me is the fact that Subarus have been the safekeepers of my favourite little dudes on many an off-road adventure. It would seem that I'm writing an opus praising the brand, and I wish it was true because I simply cannot.
You see, there is a country on our planet where women are not permitted to drive- foreign or local, Muslim or Christian, married or widowed, there will be no driving by women in Saudi Arabia. There's no public transport and women and children have been raped and murdered by chauffeurs, but still, no driving. The religious police would rather let someone die rather than permit a woman to proceed if she were driving herself or a sick family member to the hospital. There's no way in hell a Saudi woman is allowed to drive under any circumstances, let alone do all of those rad things Subaru sponsors. Something must change, and if it isn't the Saudi Arabian cavemen, it should be Subaru.
Subaru has a long-standing reputation of being the social conscience of the automotive industry, yet they not only sell their vehicles in Saudi Arabia, but advertise them as well. The prime advertising target for Subaru in Saudi Arabia is still women, who purchase their products, but aren't allowed to use them.
Subaru isn't the only company that makes money from gender apartheid, but McDonald's and Pizza Hut (there are 66 locations kingdom wide!) don't advertise themselves as having any conscience whatsoever, let alone have social improvement as part of corporate policy. In offering their cars for sale in the most sexually repressive nation on the planet, Subaru is telling the world that they are hypocrites willing to sacrifice their image for a few sales.
So what can you do? You can join 50, 000 other people in demanding Subaru pull their cars out of Saudi Arabia until their customers are allowed to drive them. Click the Subaru logo to lend your signature to a letter advising Takeshi Tachimori and Bill Cyphers of what they stand to lose if they don't stand up for their principles.
Keeping your word matters and it's time for Subaru to make their mark by walking the walk.
P.S. The lovely lady in the above Subaru advert is Martina Navratilova, who would not only be unable to drive in Saudi Arabia, but would be executed.
Posted by Michel-Exildas Galipeau at 00:28