An email, received on 25 November 2016, for Euro Car Parts, stated "EXTRA 50% Off All Oils".
The complainant challenged whether the claim "EXTRA 50% Off All Oils" was genuine and could be substantiated, because they believed Castrol Engine Oil Edge FST 4ltr was not 50% cheaper.
Euro Car Parts Ltd said they had sold the Castrol Engine Oil Edge FST 4ltr at various prices during 2016. The lowest price had been £36.48 and the highest price the oil had been sold for was £64.32. They provided copies of invoices to show sales for each different price charged throughout the year. Euro Car Parts said the advertised extra 50% off promotion lasted for four days and the oil was priced at £64.32 for two weeks prior to the four-day offer and for six weeks after the promotion had ended.
The ASA considered that consumers would understand the claim "EXTRA 50% Off All Oils" to mean that they would be able to purchase oil products at a discount from the usual selling price for those products. We considered that they would understand from the claim "EXTRA" that a discount against the usual selling price had already been applied, and that a further 50% discount could be obtained in the promotion.
We understood that the Castrol Engine Oil had been sold throughout 2016 at various prices between £36.49 and £46.99 up until two weeks before the promotion began, when the price increased to £64.32. During the advertised promotional period, we understood that it was priced at £32.16, which was half the £64.32 at which it had been priced for the previous two weeks. We had not seen any evidence of the number of sales at each price, but given the short period of time at which it had been priced at £64.32 compared to the other lower prices, we did not consider that to be the usual selling price. In addition, given that it was a claimed "EXTRA" discount, we would expect the usual selling price to have been higher than £64.32 in order for £32.16 to represent an "EXTRA" 50% off".
Given the above, we concluded that the claim "EXTRA 50% Off All Oils" was likely to mislead consumers about the saving available to them.
The ad breached CAP Code (Edition 12) rules 3.1 3.1 Marketing communications must not materially mislead or be likely to do so. (Misleading advertising), 3.7 3.7 Before distributing or submitting a marketing communication for publication, marketers must hold documentary evidence to prove claims that consumers are likely to regard as objective and that are capable of objective substantiation. The ASA may regard claims as misleading in the absence of adequate substantiation. (Substantiation) and 3.17 3.17 Price statements must not mislead by omission, undue emphasis or distortion. They must relate to the product featured in the marketing communication. (Prices).
The ad must not appear again in its current form. We told Euro Car Parts Ltd to ensure their future savings claims were not misleading.