Wired magazine has abruptly pulled the plug on a sponsored piece singing the praises of Volkswagen’s diesel engines which proudly proclaimed that ‘a once un-loved engine has cleaned up its act.’
Ironically the vehicle manufacturer’s own reputation has now been tainted by cheat software installed in its diesel models designed to hoodwink regulators into believing emissions were less than they actually were, forcing chief executive Martin Winterkorn to resign.
Amidst the furore Ad Age reports that anyone seeking to learn more about Volkswagen’s diesel engines via Wired is now presented with a 404 error.
A sponsorship deal saw Wired promote Volkswagen as a ‘future forward’ firm courtesy of its ‘cleaner’ engines and even built a customised microsite for the disgraced brand – just days before its dirty secret became public knowledge.
Promotional material for the sub-section read: “Volkswagen and Wired Brand Lab have created an experience that will inform, educate, surprise, and change the way you think about diesel.”
This content was produced by Wired’s own in-house advertising department and sponsored by Volkswagen.