Mercedes plans to treat carbon emissions like horse droppings

By David Kiefaber on Wed Sep 1 2010

Mercedes-Benz, which recently featured long-dead guy Gottlieb Daimler in a commercial, is still wallowing in its past, judging by this new spot from German agency Jung von Matt. But they're getting better at it. The new spot compares the horse droppings of 1894 to the carbon emissions of 2010. I'm surprised no one thought of this before, actually. The two issues aren't exactly parallel, but they do illustrate the Faustian bargain of any technological breakthrough. Ours is slightly more complicated, and the debate surrounding it has gone almost completely off the deep end, but there are benefits and costs at every level of progress. By taking a broader view of history to provide context for its fuel-cell-powered, no-emissions cars, Mercedes comes out looking like both an innovator and a reliable cog in the gear system of time. Compared to other ads in this vein, which come off as insecure and nostalgic in a Sunset Boulevard kind of way, this is a big step up.


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