Volkswagen Super Bowl Commercial — Is It Racist? Watch The Video

Thu, January 31, 2013 1:01pm EDT by 17 Comments
Volkswagen Super Bowl Commercial
Courtesy of VW

In this commercial, set to air during the Super Bowl on Sunday, Feb. 3, a group of white office workers talk in a Jamaican accent to promote the 2013 Volkswagen Beetle, sparking claims of racism from some. Watch the video and tell us what you think.

The Super Bowl is a time for tons of football, and yes, the commercials! In this new VW commercial, the company is coming under fire for allegedly being racist.

Will CBS Pull The Volkswagen Commercial?

CBS is still planning to air the VW Beetle commercial. Tim Mahoney, the head of marketing at VW says: “There is no thought to pulling it.”

Have Super Bowl Commercials Been Pulled In The Past?

In 2007, the Snickers commercial was pulled, as well as a GM commercial that showed a robot killing himself.

VW Defends Its Commercial: It’s Not Racist!

Tim went on to say that they met with 100 Jamaicans before making the commercial that is said to have cost $10 million.

“We obviously did our homework to make sure that we weren’t offensive.”

Also supporting VW, Wykeham McNeill, Jamaica’s Minister of Tourism and Entertainment: “We view it as a compliment. People should get into their inner Jamaica and get happy.”

A Jamaican woman named Marsha Rose says it’s not racist at all:

“It’s not racist, let it go. This entire thing is so ridiculous; you are looking for racism when I am sure you could find real racism elsewhere. Would it have been better if they used a white Jamaican, we have that here you know, really stupid and pointless. The people who have all the reasons why the ad is racist should really look into themselves to why they believe it’s racist; maybe they are carrying some deep seated racism.”

WATCH: Super Bowl Commercials & Movie Trailers


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More Super Bowl news:

  1. Beyoncé: Why She’s Reuniting With Destiny’s Child For Super Bowl
  2. Destiny’s Child Performing With Beyonce At The Super Bowl — Report
  3. Beyoncé Performing During 2013 Super Bowl Halftime Show — Report

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Phinster

Posted at 9:23 PM on February 3, 2013  

“Mondays” is slang for black people. I don’t think VW knows that.

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Robin

Posted at 9:23 AM on February 3, 2013  

R u kidding me racist? Really? I will tell u what’s racist negro college fund could u imagine a white college fund or hair commercial says for black people only say white people only I bet it would be different then there is black basket ball a black man turned to me and said y does it have to be black if there was all white basketball it would be heck raised. But they want to stop people from hanging a confederate flag that is our heritage

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white america

Posted at 12:42 PM on February 4, 2013  

you make us whites look bad!!!!

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Jann Weeden

Posted at 1:08 AM on February 2, 2013  

Seriously! People need to get a life! I totally look at the Super Bowl commercial that we, myself, Americans, are so stressed out about everything that it takes an American taking a Jamaican point of view to relax. I think it is a great commercial, for myself having my first car be a 1978 VW convertible and having visited beautiful Jamaica, let’s take the Jamaican way of relaxing, but don’t take too long on making my drink :o)

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Jann Weeden

Posted at 1:14 AM on February 2, 2013  

Oh, plus I love the Partridge Family addition of “Come On Get Happy”

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Words

Posted at 8:52 PM on February 1, 2013  

The ad is hilarious! I suspect the people who are complaining have way too much time on their hands. Seriously, if they cannot differentiate between some good natured and well-meaning humour and real hate – then I say forget about them…http://www.vaishwords.com/2012_05_01_archive.html

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petal

Posted at 5:36 PM on February 1, 2013  

I am a Jamaican and don’t know why everyone making a big deal out of this I thought it was funny if you are not a Jamaican you are not going to get it I dont see it as racist people just don’t have anything better do with there life them, themselves are unhappy

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Stephanie

Posted at 12:11 PM on February 1, 2013  

Don’t see anything wrong with this ad. All the Jamaicans I know are so laid-back and have the best carefree, easy-going spirits, they are wonderful to be around, and this commercial shows a guy that is exuding the same contagious qualities… Why/who considered this racist??

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deb

Posted at 8:11 AM on February 1, 2013  

How miserable of a life one must have – to have the time and energy to find this commercial “Racist”. What they really need is the guy from the commercial to follow them around for a month to try and get them out of this depressed, wretched, dismal, sad state of life they are in.
I find it very interesting that absolutely NOBODY from Jamaica finds this offensive – Jamaicans’ are actually embracing the commercial – they LOVE it.
So, anyone that finds this commercial offensive – GET A LIFE – you are trying to create a problem where there is not one to start with.
If you want to complain about taxes, crime, unemployment, drug or alcohol abuse, etc, etc etc….. I might take the time to even agree with you ….. these are “REAL PROBLEMS” – You really need to learn to distinguish between the two.
And by the way – Being Jamaican is not about being black or white or asian (et al)…by the way – Jamaicans are all of these and more….. Being Jamaican – is just that…Jamaican!
Do you even know the Jamaican “Motto”??? “out of many… one people”.
Just think about that statement for a while… let it soak in. We could learn a lot from the Jamaicans… you never here anyone on the island say “I am an Afro-Jamaican, or I am an asian- Jamaican.(or whatever)…they just say “I am a Jamaican”.

nuff said

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Andy Tuzinski

Posted at 10:07 AM on February 1, 2013  

Well said, Deb.

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Ja'can eyez

Posted at 12:55 AM on February 5, 2013  

I’m very proud to be Jamaican, and I see no racism in the add, Deb u explained it well…out of many ONE PEOPLE…

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rudyard Simons

Posted at 6:21 AM on February 1, 2013  

I am a Jamaican I Donot find the ad offensive. Jamaica is a melting pot of many races. You could have easily had a white Jamaican talking. Infact it is always amusing to hear tourists to our island copying the accent. Those who find it racists are they saying Jamaicans are not happy people?

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steve

Posted at 6:01 AM on February 1, 2013  

I don’t see it as offensive … reminds me (and I’m sure many others) of Bobby McFerrin’s song ‘Don’t worry, be happy’ which made us all smile 15 years back. Let’s see the positive side of other people and cultures and enjoy.

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Stephanie

Posted at 12:15 PM on February 1, 2013  

15 years back? Try 25 :-) :-) And the fact that I remember loving that song dates me a little, but it was an awesome song.

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Dave

Posted at 6:19 PM on January 31, 2013  

It’s crazy to think that this video is racist. Jamaica is melting pot of all types of people. There are many white Jamaica.

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magdalana

Posted at 1:26 PM on January 31, 2013  

OMG! Get a life people!! that commercial was fun and happy..It made me smile and be happy and also wished I was in a warm weather state!!! If someones racist mind goes to racism, your not gonna stop them.. I LOVEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE THIS COMMERCIAL..MAKES ME HAPPY

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Guy

Posted at 11:30 PM on February 11, 2013  

It’s no different than a Dodge commercial with a bunch of white people talking with an “chinese” accent – aaaah roundeye not drive toyota? Ahhhh you got five dollar? What about a Chrysler ad with a bunch of white people from Arizona talking with a fake Mexican accent about a 300c with chrome wheels?

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