Mondays are tough on us all, but this particular Monday was especially rough on one supercar maker and one wannabe supercar maker.
Aston Martin filed paperwork to a new logo and as soon as it hit the web, auto enthusiasts everywhere seemed to let out a collective gasp of disapproval. Meanwhile, an in-depth exposé on Faraday Future showed just how dysfunctional things have gotten for the electric vehicle startup.
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If those storylines aren’t amusing enough for you, we’ve also got a sneak peek at a Super Bowl commercial starring Melissa McCarthy and some just desserts for a reckless Mini driver that might tickle your funny bone.
All this and more inside today’s edition of the Daily Drive-Thru.NEWS: Faraday Future’s FF91 only has 60 pre-orders
Faraday Future’s FF91, a would-be Tesla Model X challenger, had a flashy, albeit technologically uninspiring, debut at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas earlier this month, after which Faraday reportedly collected 64,000 reservations for its unpriced, all-electric crossover. Now, that’s a pittance compared to the roughly 400,000-person waitlist for the Tesla Model 3, but it’s nothing to scoff at—until you read the fine print.
Sources close to Faraday told Business Insider that only about 60 potential customers put down the requisite $5,000 deposit to secure a reservation. This is just one of several, less-than-flattering details revealed about the L.A. startups state of affairs.
Read more about Faraday’s bleak future here.Wal-Mart checks into the car-selling game
Every week 140 million Americans file into a Wal-Mart Superstores to buy everything from food to clothes to electronics and home goods. Now they can add one more thing to their shopping lists: cars.
The big-box chain has partnered with online automotive retailer CarSaver, dealer groups and Ally Financial to open 25 car shopping kiosks in four major metropolitan areas in the Southwest in April.
Read more about the new Wal-Mart service here.Tesla pushes new Autopilot software live
Less than a week removed from a major ruling by federal regulators about its heavily-criticized Autopilot system, Tesla has rolled out the first of a series of updates that will make compatible vehicles fully autonomous.
Dubbed Enhanced Autopilot, the system features Autosteer+ to help the car navigate tricky roads; Seek mode, which enables the car to drive itself to and from parking spaces, and automatic lane changing to weave through slow-moving traffic. The software update only applies to new Tesla vehicles with the requisite self-driving hardware.
Read more about the Enhanced Autopilot update here.Melissa McCarthy to star in Kia Super Bowl ad
With 30 seconds of advertising air time alone costing a cool $5 million during next month’s Super Bowl matchup between the New England Patriots and the Atlanta Falcons, the commercials that run between snaps can cost as much as feature films, hence why some commercials have their own commercials.
Kia is the first such automakers to promote their promotional material, offering up a 25-second YouTube clip in which Hollywood funny woman Melissa McCarthy is shown running in full safari gear. From what? We can’t be sure. But considering the actual spot, which is slated to debut during the third quarter, is for the Kia’s Niro crossover SUV, my guess is the letters get jumbled around for a rino (or rhino, if you prefer).
See the clip here and posit your own guess.Aston Martin trademarks new, circular logo
Our own Chris Powers said it best, nothing in 2017 is sacred. If you need further proof that, look no further: Aston Martin wants to brand its merchandise with a new logo that looks unsettlingly like a manhole cover.
The iconic British automaker, known for crafting some of the finest sports cars in the world, caused a stir when reports surfaced of a recently filed trademark for a new, circular logo with intersecting lines in the middle that bear an uncanny resemblance to a sewer cap. Aston’s Chief Executive Andy Palmer clarified that the logo would not sully his brand’s vehicles, but it would, instead, adorn other merchandise. Still, it begs the question: why? We may never know.
See the new logo and read more about it here.REVIEWS: First Drive: 2017 BMW 5 Series
12 photos view gallery First Pictures: 2017 BMW 5 Series Photos
Despite its efforts to pursue and perfect autonomous driving, BMW has also redoubled its promise to provide its customers with the “Ultimate Driving Machine.” Let the all-new 2017 5 Series serve as exhibit A.
Lighter, turbocharged and outfitted with a perfectly tuned suspension, the 530i xDrive offers a smooth and luxurious ride, while the sportier 540i boggles the mind with joy from its on-road capabilities and anticipation for what lies ahead in the soon-to-be-released M550i. BMW has also done a fair bit of work to the interior to make it more comfortable and technologically advanced.
High mark: Driving dynamics
“Traveling across greater San Francisco in the 530i, the turbocharged 4-cylinder engine proved buttery smooth, emitting a faint but authoritative growl under hard acceleration but otherwise proving entirely unobtrusive. No noise, no vibration, no harshness.”
Low mark: Outside appearance
“The car is balanced and distinctive, and is instantly familiar both for its use of traditional design cues and its shrink-wrapped 7 Series appearance. But is it attractive? Not to me, especially in comparison to the outgoing 5 Series, let alone other mid-sized luxury sedans like the gorgeous new Volvo S90.”
Read the rest of Christian Wardlaw’s first impressions here.GALLERIES Cadillac’s ATS-V is sharper in more ways than one
With a carbon black design package that features a carbon fiber splitter, hood vent and rear diffuser, and a revamped version of Cadillac’s CUE infotainment system that features Apple CarPlay, Android Auto and GM’s new teen driver system, the 2017 Cadillac ATS-V is sharp in the both the looks and brains departments.
12 photos view gallery Gallery: 2017 Cadillac ATS-V PhotosPhoto Review: 2017 is the Mazda3’s best year yet
With refreshed styling cues to Mazda’s new G-Vectoring Control system for improved handling, the 2017 Mazda3 stays on whether it’s cruising down the highway or sitting pretty in your driveway. See Liz Kim sing its praises in this photo review:
14 photos view gallery Photo Review: 2017 Mazda 3 Grand Touring SedanEXTRAS Video: Karma catches up quick to this Mini driver
Rule number one of driving: don’t be a jerk. Most of us enjoy bending the rules of the road a little bit; a little speeding here, a last minute lane change there, things happen. But when you go out of your way to put yourself and every other driver in your general vicinity at risk for no reason whatsoever, bad things will happen to you.
As this Mini driver found out the hard way, sometimes karma (or the driver that you just cut off) catches up to you sooner than you expected.
Check out the video here.
Check the Daily Drive-Thru every weekday evening to get a roundup of the latest news, reviews, galleries and more from the New York Daily News Autos.
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