Overcoming Bad Publicity
Here's a history lesson and a marketing lesson, maybe even a Marketing History lesson.
How did the company that grew huge as a result of its founding and funding by the Nazi Party and its reliance on slave labor ever get over that? (You're not finding this information out on the VW corporate site, that's for sure. They dont even have a "history of VW" section at www.vw.com.)
The lesson of course is: Time (+ aggressive advertising) heals all wounds. So, if your company happens to find itself in a potentially embarrassing or compromising situation, like your signature product being partially designed by one of history's worst personalities, take a lesson from VW: With enough time and the right advertising, people will forget your haunted past and everything will magically get better.
(Sorry to reopen this old wound for you, VW - I was just wondering how you did it. I'll shut up if you send me a new car. I'll take a Passat with a manual transmission, if you still make manual transmissions. Leave out the guitar, unless you can partner with a better guitar builder. And did you guys ever pay that old guy who designed your logo?)