VW have been feverishly trying to rebuild their brand after the last time they lied about their car's emission numbers. Remember that? Of course you do - it's most probably permanently affixed to your subconscious.
That stunt cost them billions of dollars in fines, but also seriously damaged their brand reputation and tainted the mark, thanks to the world realising that one of their favourite brands had developed a culture of lying.
Now - in an apparent April Fool's joke - VW have done it again.
The joke was that the company said that they had officially changed their name to 'Voltswagen' (a play on the idea that they are leading the charge when it comes to EV innovation).
VW issued press releases, had the CEO make an official statement, confirmed the news with the world's media; only for this all to be revealed as a joke.
Understandably people are seriously pissed off, because they've been made to look foolish. It's not the first time that VW have achieved that trick obviously (What's that saying? 'Fool me one shame on you, fool me twice...)
So here's a hot branding tip VW - stop making people look like idiots. That's it.
Sure it was actually quite a clever joke, but considering your history of misinformation - it's too soon. Context here is the key. Your license to bend the truth in your favour is no longer valid.
Put it on a poster and paste it up in your boardroom, turn it into a Z-card and share it with your marketing folk.
The brand is still on probation following the previous scandal, this silly stunt is certainly not going to help with their ongoing brand restoration efforts.