Long-established German automakers don't like being reminded of their links to the Nazi era between 1933 and 1945 - in particular, Mercedes-Benz shies away from references to the superlative V12 engines that powered the Luftwaffe's Messerschmitt Bf109 fighter aircraft and the prominent three-pointed stars on many of the Fuhrer's state limousines.
So it's understandable that the Stuttgart hierarchy weren't amused by this wickedly clever student video - and, according to the Independent newspaper, insisted that the makers insert a declaration that the spoof advertisement, made by students at the Ludwigsburg film academy, had nothing to do with them.
TECHNOLOGY WITH A CONSCIENCE?
The 80-second clip is set in 1890, in the Austrian village of Braunau am Inn, birthplace of Adolf Hitler. Through a village scene populated by extras in period costume, a current C-Class moves slowly down a village street - but when a group of children run in front of it, it brakes gently as the "Collision Prevent Assist" activates and prevents an accident.
Then the shot moves to a young, dark-haired boy running through the village, the music swells, the car accelerates and knocks the boy down, just as the face of an adult Adolf Hitler flashes on-screen.
The closing scene shows the dead boy on the ground, and the sub-title "Mercedes Benz - automatic braking system - detects dangers before they arise."
Offensive? Innovative? Technology with a conscience? Watch the video and let us know what you think in the comments section below.