Mercedes-Benz has teamed up with one of the most iconic characters in video game history to hawk its new GLA. The new partnership with Nintendo features everyone’s favorite digital plumber, Mario, driving the new crossover.
A new 30-second spot airing in Japan renders an 8-bit GLA in the familiar world of the the 1985 Nintendo classic, Super Mario Bros. The car, with Mario behind the wheel, breaks bricks, stomps goombas, and collects coins, just like in the game.
Things get bizarre, however, after Mario and the GLA reach the flagpole marking the end of a level within the game. Suddenly, the world becomes “real” as a GLA roars into view in front of the castle, and a life-sized Mario — played by an actor wearing somewhat grotesquely exaggerated facial features — emerges from the soft-roader, all triumphant-like. We won’t spoil the ending for you; you’ll just have to watch the kicker for yourself in the video below.
Furthermore, the Mercedes GLA is also downloadable content in the Mario Kart 8, a highly anticipated fantasy racing-themed sequel released Friday. However, the car is available only to players in Japan.
The real-life GLA is a compact crossover built atop the CLA platform. A transversely-mounted 208hp 2.0-liter inline-four occupies the engine room while a 355hp turbocharged version will motivate the AMG-ified edition, presumably after collecting a mushroom power-up.