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Avengers movie adds gas engine sound to Audi’s electric e-tron in product placement fail

With the launch of their new electric SUV in the US, Audi is now making a marketing push for the e-tron vehicle lineup — making it one of the rare legacy automakers advertising electric cars.

In its latest effort, they had an important product placement in the new Avengers movie, but they added some gas engine sounds to electric Audi e-tron.

Note: this article is spoiler-free.

Marvel Studios’ “Avengers: Endgame” debuted this weekend and the film features the all-electric Audi e-tron Sportback concept and the Audi e-tron GT concept.

Loren Angelo, vice president of Marketing at Audi of America, commented on the product statement:

“Since Tony Stark introduced the world to the iconic Audi R8 in 2008, Marvel fans have really embraced the brand. We’re eager to introduce them now to the all-electric Audi e-tron SUV and expect an equally strong fan reaction to Tony Stark’s new supercar the all-electric Audi e-tron GT concept,”

The electric vehicles are quite predominantly featured in the movie, but they appear to have made a big mistake in the audio editing.

In one of the main product placement scenes, Tony Stark is seen driving the e-tron GT aggressively and they obviously added gas engine sounds on the footage of the superhero billionaire driving the all-electric concept vehicle.

We contacted Audi to have a comment about what happened there and we will update if we get a statement.

Update: Audi sent us the following statement:

The filmmakers requested a sound for a specific scene in the new Avengers movie, a sound that actively supported the drama of the scene, including the gag when Tony Stark deliberately drove by.

On the basis of this request from the filmmakers, Audi experts developed a digitally-generated sound for the car.  This sound was then further developed together with the sound experts from the filmmakers in order to fit perfectly into the scene.

As well as teasing the series production version of the e-tron GT in the movie, Audi is also teasing the topic of sound for its up-coming electric cars.  In the near future, regulations will require that electric cars make a sound in many markets around the world. 

The sound that Audi developed for the e-tron GT concept in the new Avengers movie is not the actual sound of the e-tron GT series production version – which goes into production in late 2020.

Electrek’s Take

I love that Audi is making a big marketing push for its upcoming lineup of e-tron vehicles. They are buying ads, making marketing campaigns, and that’s rare for electric vehicles in the industry.

But I feel like the execution could be a lot better.

First off, I don’t understand why they focus the advertising on the models not yet available, like the e-tron GT and e-tron Sportsback, instead of the e-tron SUV, which is hitting the market in the next few weeks and it is already available in Europe.

Secondly, they seem to make some missteps, like those engine sounds in this product placement.

I like that electric vehicles are being featured in mainstream movies like that, but some people won’t even know it’s electric if it has engine noise edited on top of the regular electric motor noise.

Maybe it’s not their fault and the production company behind the movie did it, but you would think that Audi would have oversight over the final product since they are paying for it.

Again, it’s better than nothing, but I just think it should be avoided.

What do you think? Let us know in the comment section below.

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