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Car launch fails

On the day things don’t always go according to plan, as the following car manufacturers found. We take a look at videos of some the most memorable car launch fails.

Mercedes A-Class

Occasionally something happens at the launch of a new car that sticks with it for a long time. At the launch of the A-Class in 1997 the elk-test was performed, in which the car suddenly swerves at speed as if avoiding an obstacle. The test is designed to test how a car will cope with the violent change in direction. Unfortunately for Mercedes, the A-Class flipped.

As a result, the video clip was shown around the world on news stations and pretty much every review of the A-Class since has mentioned the elk test, despite changes Mercedes made to resolve the problem.

Volvo S60

Volvo are synonymous with safety, its one of their key selling points. Theyre also at the fore-front of safety innovation. At the launch of the S60 they decided to do a live demonstration of the automatic breaking system, which detects obstacles and applies the brakes. However, from the video below youll see that things didnt quite going to plan, cue the clip being shared across the Internet.


Ferrari 458

The PR launch of the Ferraris new 458 Italia went smoothly, with it getting lots of excellent reviews. However soon after launch, photos of a 458 on fire surfaced online. And then came additional photos of a different burnt-out 458, and then another, and another. It soon became apparent that something wasnt quite right. Ferrari eventually admitted that there was a problem and announce a recall, blaming a faulty glue used in production.

Unfortunately for the Ferrari PR department, it quickly became global news and forums and social media sites were awash with jokes along the lines of how flaming brilliant the car was.

Volvo V60

Another mishap from Volvo, and again a failed safety system was the issue. Volvo set-up a life-sized dummy at the launch of the V60 to test the pedestrian automatic breaking in front of a crowd of journalists. You can probably guess what happened next. However it didn’t just happen once, but three times! How embarrassing…


Lada Granta

Lada don’t exactly have the best reputation when it comes to quality and reliability. So when Vladimir Putin came to test their new Granta in front of the Russian press they must have been praying it would all go smoothly. A casually dressed Putin inspected the car for a minute, took a seat in the drivers seat and then tried and failed to start the engine, a couple of times. A report then came out that he had also had problems with opening the boot and had to get two others to help him. Not exactly a smooth launch of the new peoples car.


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