Last week, Afshin Behnia, the founder of the car culture website Petrolicious, apparently posted and then deleted bad and racist posts on Facebook. Today, he said was stepping down and letting new ownership step in.
To recap, these were the posts:
And here’s how Behnia addressed it, as the controversy brewed.
That was where the situation stood until today when Behnia posted the following this afternoon to Instagram. Behnia posted the statement on Petrolicious’s verified account.
Over seven years ago I launched Petrolicious with a vision to celebrate all that is beautiful in the classic car world and to spread our passion and inspire new fans. With the creative leadership of my wife and the extraordinary talents of our team and freelancers, we realized this vision by treating each piece of content as art, and by treating our audience with the utmost respect. We have been inclusive of everyone who shares our passion. I thank you all for having made Petrolicious an internationally loved brand.
Today I have decided that it is in the best interest of Petrolicious, our fans, and its future clients, for me to step down and let new owners carry Petrolicious forward. Details will follow in the next couple of weeks. Look for Petrolicious to be even better.
This is the part where I might explain why the posts were bad but I respect you, reader. And besides my colleague, Jason Torchinsky, already did that. Suffice to say if you have what you think is a cool spicy take to share with the world it’s usually best to check yourself before you wreck yourself as they say.
I sent an email to Petrolicious to see if they or Behnia had any further comment and will update this post if I hear back.