Authored by Lorenz Duchamps via The Epoch Times (emphasis ours),
Luxury sportscar maker Porsche has come under fire for reportedly editing out a famous statue of Jesus Christ in a new promotional video celebrating 60 years of its iconic 911 model.
The original ad, which was filmed in Portugal, is no longer available to watch on YouTube after the German automaker took the video private.
A new video has since replaced the original ad, showing the Cristo Rei (Christ the King) statue about 44 seconds into the clip.
Although the original ad is no longer available on YouTube, one X user saved the video. In the two-minute ad, a red Porsche 911 speeds past the Cristo Rei, but it shows only the statue's pedestal and not the actual figure of Christ.
"Hey, @Porsche, why did you erase the statue of Jesus Christ from your video filmed in Lisbon?" the observant X user wrote on the platform after first spotting the apparent edit. The post, which has gone viral, was viewed nearly six million times as of Aug. 7, with thousands of social media users commenting to it.
Meanwhile, Porsche has expressed regret in a statement to news outlets, calling the removal of the giant statue in its original ad "a mistake."
"In a previously uploaded version of the 911 S/T launch film, a landmark was removed. This was a mistake, and we apologize for any offense caused. The original film is online now," a Porsche spokeswoman told the Daily Mail.
In a statement to Fox Business, Porsche said they can "fully understand the hurt this has caused" as the company confirmed the advert that did not include the Cristo Rei statue has been removed.
The erasure of the monument—which was completed in the 1950s as a representation of Portugal's gratitude for evading the horrors of World War II—sparked anger online, including by some who called the company "woke" while urging people to boycott the automaker.
"Time to boycott Porsche! Another boycott that’s easy for me," one user wrote.
Others questioned Porsche's decision to erase the iconic statue, saying the car manufacturer should have picked another location for the shoot if they don't want to show religious figures in their advertisements.
"They did not have to film this location/angle at all, so many alternative locations that would have taken nothing away from the advert," one user wrote. "Yet they decided to include the statue/base so they could erase the most important part of it."
However, another X user found no issue with the apparant edit, saying it's common practice for companies to edit out the presence of religious icons since the brand is international and serves all people.
"I have worked with Porsche on ads before—for worldwide commercials it is very common to edit out any religious landmarks/signage. However, for localized national ads, that’s not the case. Any big brand does that, there is no 'conspiracy' behind it," the user wrote in an X post.
The company's commercial video features the new, limited edition, Porsche 911 S/T model, which will be limited to only 1,963 units and costs $291,650. According to Porsche, the 911 S/T does 0 to 60 mph in 3.5 seconds and has a top speed of 186 mph.