GM withdraws 'offensive' China advertisement, says report

HONG KONG (AFP) - US auto giant General Motors is withdrawing a global advertisement which refers to China as the land where people say "ching-ching, chop suey" after admitting it contains "offensive content", a report said on Wednesday.

The television advert for the Chevrolet Trax SUV, one of GM's latest car models, had been running in Canada since early April and was also posted onto Chevrolet's European website, the South China Morning Post (SCMP) reported.

The offending advert features a song which includes the lyrics "In the land of Fu Manchu, the girls all now do the Suzie-Q, clap their hands in the centre of the floor, saying 'ching-ching, chop suey, swing some more'".

The advert was replaced with a new version without the lyrics for Canadian broadcasters around a week ago and will be removed from all Chevrolet websites worldwide, GM Canada communications director Faye Roberts told the SCMP.

"Once the issue was called to our attention, GM immediately removed the offensive content from the commercial," said Ms Roberts.

She said the commercial had "received some negative feedback regarding the lyrics" and that "it is never our intention to offend the audience".

The incident comes at a time when GM seeks to maintain its dominance in the lucrative Chinese car market where its sales rose an annual 11.3 per cent last year to a record 2.84 million, according to the company.

Last month the US automaker announced it will this year launch 17 new or updated models in China, the world's largest car consumer, as it aims to make inroads into the country's luxury auto market.

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