Toyota dealer's Rolf Harris advert sparks backlash

Updated: 

Aussie car ad

A Toyota dealership in Kalgoorlie, Western Australia has faced a huge backlash from social media users after a newspaper advert it posted went viral.

Originally seen in the local Kalgoorlie Miner newspaper, the advert for a Toyota Hilux was accompanied by the text: "There's more hope of Rolf Harris getting a babysitting gig than us finding a better example!"

Unsurprisingly, this attempt at humour hasn't sat well the masses, with many taking to Facebook and Twitter to vent their disgust at the insensitive ad.

The Daily Mail reports users as tweeting a variety of responses, ranging from "This is NOT ok" to a simple "Oh dear".

The dealership's general sales manager Darryl Evans, told Australia's NT News that the advert was not intended to offend anyone.

"We try to make our ads a little bit interesting and a little bit light-hearted but we blurred the lines of good taste and bad on this occasion," he said.

"It was only printed once, but it's somehow got on social media after someone took a photo of it, even though we'd taken it off the website."

Toyota of Australia issued a statement on Twitter, saying: "We don't endorse the ad and requested for it to be removed. Now working with dealer to ensure it doesn't happen again."

Veteran entertainer Rolf Harris – a household name for generations – was found guilty earlier this year of 12 counts of sexual assault and sentenced to five years and nine months behind bars.