Hyundai has apologised and pulled an online advert, created by Innocean, which shows a man attempting to kill himself with exhaust fumes in its new model.
The ad aimed to highlight the car’s 100 per cent water emissions, however it quickly attracted complaints on Twitter and Facebook. Additionally, a scathing blog post, written as an open letter to Hyundai from advertising creative Holly Brockwell, whose father killed himself in a car in 1990, was read and shared thousands of times.
As a result, Hyundai said it "sincerely apologises for the offensive viral video".
It added: "The video was created by an affiliate advertising agency, Innocean Europe, without Hyundai's request or approval.
"It runs counter to our values as a company and as members of the community. We are very sorry for any offense or distress the video caused.
"More to the point, Hyundai apologises to those who have been personally impacted by tragedy. Hyundai Motor UK has had no involvement with the video."
In its statement, Innocean Europe said: "The intention of the viral video was to employ hyperbole to dramatise a product advantage, culminating in a positive outcome.
"Clearly, we were mistaken, and we sincerely apologise. As a company that espouses strong family values, Innocean would never intentionally set out to cause distress.
"The video has been removed from all channels. It will not appear again."