April 1 is a difficult time to visit any kind of news outlet or social media site, because they’ll be flooded with fake stories for April Fools.
Nowadays, most stories are aimed at showcasing the creative thinking within a company’s PR department than actually being designed to deceive, leading to much hilarity and more than a little cringe.
This year has been no different, so we’ve brought together every story we can find from the car industry having fun for April Fools – and one company that got it very wrong.
Let’s start with the big mistake, courtesy of Volkswagen. It all started a couple of days ago, when Volkswagen ‘mistakenly’ released a press release early, stating that it would be changing its name in the US to Voltswagen to promote its move towards electric vehicles.
Note that this was released before April Fools, leading journalists around the world to contact the company and check if it was a joke. They were assured it was not a joke, so it got coverage on all the major news sites.
However, it was a joke. One that went very wrong for the German brand. It’s unclear whether the early release of the story was a genuine mistake and the company tried to save the joke by asserting it was actually true, or if this was the plan all along. Either way, the company has been left red-faced and forced into an apology.
Caterham ‘Seven Lube’
And now for something completely different. British sports car maker Caterham builds very narrow cars that aren’t the easiest to get in and out of. Fortunately, it’s got you covered with its own range of branded lube.
Naturally, there’s plenty of innuendo, with the product described as being ‘designed to grease the user lightly in order to aid a quick and satisfying entry to the Seven’s driver and passenger seats’.
BMW indicator delete
It’s a joke as old as the company itself – BMW drivers don’t use their indicators. Fair play to the brand, because this year it has embraced the stereotype with a great Instagram post on its BMW M page.
It says: “Long overdue. From 2022 onwards all turn signals will be removed. No room for parts that are not in use.”
The Alfa Romeo Stelvio gets its names from the iconic Stelvio Pass, a winding mountain road in the Italian Alps. However, if you’re driving through the rainy suburbs of an English town, you couldn’t be further from this idyllic locale.
So Alfa has come up with windows that apply an Instagram-like filter to brighten the mood. There are five to choose from, with soft yellows to mimic a gorgeous sunset, or the ‘rich blues and greens of sunlit water’ to make it feel like you’re by the coast.
Tesla might have been the first company to put one of its cars in space, but Dacia reckons it can corner the market in affordable space travel. Take that, SpaceX.
To be fair to Dacia, it didn’t just write up a quick press release and mock up some photos, it actually sent a Dacia into space. Granted, it’s a model car attached to a balloon, but there genuinely is a Dacia in space. Sort of.
Tired of sounding like a strangled cat while singing along to your favourite show tunes in the car? Fear not, because Skoda has the answer: Instant auto-tune right through your car’s infotainment system.
Skoda even lets drivers and passengers record their efforts to send to friends and family…