Mercedes-Benz deletes ads featuring Chinese tennis star Li Na

Source:Global Times Published: 2020/7/6 20:43:41

Visitors look at a Mercedes-Benz CLS Coupe at a 4S dealership store in Shanghai. Photo: IC

Mercedes-Benz on Monday morning deleted a video advertisement featuring former Chinese tennis star Li Na minutes after it was posted on China's Twitter-like social media platform Weibo.

A screenshot of the advertisement taken by a Weibo user before the video was deleted shows that Mercedes-Benz cited Li's tennis achievements to promote its V-class Multi-Purpose Vehicle.

Li, who announced her retirement in 2014, won singles titles at the French Open in the 2011 and the Australian Open in 2014.

In 2019, Li was revealed by a Weibo user to have posted a controversial picture, allegedly a painting made by a member of the illegal Falun Gong cult. The cult is an anti-China political organization that has used unscrupulous measures to discredit China. It has been banned by the Chinese government in accordance with the law and cast aside by the Chinese people. 

Some comments posted under the German automaker's advertisement voiced strong dissatisfaction, with some calling on the company to complete thorough background checks before choosing brand ambassadors.

China is an important market for Mercedes-Benz. According to media reports, though China's auto sales have been declining since 2018, Mercedes-Benz sold 57,901 cars in 2019 - an 11 percent year-on-year increase, reported.

Posted in: COMPANIES

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