Shot down by metallic paint
Nissan Motor Co (Australia) Pty Ltd provided a court enforceable undertaking to the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission following an investigation by the Commission of Nissan’s television advertisement for the Nissan DUALIS vehicles. In addition, Nissan paid three infringement notices totalling $19,800.
The advertisement (dubbed as the ‘Paintball’ ad because it depicted vehicles dodging colourful balls of paint) showed two vehicles, a red ST model and a silver Ti model and featured a drive-away price. The silver Ti model was shown with metallic paint, panoramic sunroof as well as leather seats and trim – all of which were optional extras. However, the advertised price only applied to the red model featured in the advertisement. The silver Ti model depicted in the advertisement was more expensive once the cost of the optional extras is taken into account.
This is an important reminder to all industries that in advertisements of specific goods or service, if the stated price point does not correspond to the depicted goods or services – the advertisement runs the risk of being misleading. Moreover, advertisements which do not feature the full price of advertised goods or services run the risk of being in breach of the component pricing provisions of the Competition and Consumer Act 2010 (Cth).
In addition to the payment of infringement notices and the publicity flowed from the ACCC’s media release, the undertaking requires Nissan to publish corrective notice in a national newspaper and review its trade practices compliance program.