Commercial Break

Watch: New Jeep Gladiator commercial debuts during Thursday Night Football

Jeep is running a new Gladiator ad during NFL games.

Photo courtesy of Fiat Chrysler Automobiles N.V.

Restless? Take a seat in a 2020 Jeep Gladiator. That's the theme of the new commercial the company debuted during the first NFL game of the 2019 season.

Called "Seats", the spot is meant to tug at the heartstrings of adventurers at heart by showing them what is capable when they're behind the wheel or riding in a Gladiator, the company's new midsize pickup truck.

"As the name evokes, our all-new Jeep Gladiator is meant for action, to conquer," said Marissa Hunter, Head of Marketing, FCA North America. "Whether you choose to go open-air, doors-off, through rock, sand, snow or the urban jungle, Jeep Gladiator's rugged utility and functionality is not meant for those in the spectator seats. Gladiator is 100% Jeep 4x4 and 100% truck. A game-changer that embodies the truest spirit of freedom – something only found in a Jeep vehicle."

Take a look at the new commercial:

2020 Jeep® Gladiator | Seats www.youtube.com

The 2020 Jeep Gladiator is now available at dealerships nationwide. It has a starting MSRP of $33,545 and comes in four trim levels: Sport, Sport S, Overland, and Rubicon. It has an additional shipping charge of $1,495.

Entertainers Chrissy Teigen and John Legend star in this year's Genesis Super Bowl ad.

Photo courtesy of Genesis

Like sister companies Hyundai and Kia, Genesis is throwing its hat in the ring. Musician John Legend and his wife, model Chrissy Teigen, will star in a new spot for the automaker that focuses viewers on the company's position of "Young Luxury."

The second-quarter advertisement will introduce the GV80 SUV and be a kickoff to the SUV's campaign featuring the duo.

"Launching GV80 in North America during the Super Bowl offers us exponential visibility for the Genesis brand at the national, and to some extent global, level," said Mark Del Rosso, Chief Executive Officer, Genesis Motor North America. "With John and Chrissy showcasing their signature charm, we will give our first SUV the running room to compete and win."

Del Rosso continued, "Launching our first SUV with amazing support from John and Chrissy in our first Super Bowl spot became the perfect time to launch our new "Young Luxury" brand campaign and is indicative of our desire at Genesis to ignite exploration in everyone by infusing all that we do with the spirit of youth and wonder. Genesis is the youngest luxury automotive brand, why not act our age and have a little fun?"

Caviar director and comedian Neal Brennan, who is known for adding comedic touches to the ads he directs, helmed the ad. "Combining opulence and humor for this spot was a fun challenge," said Brennan. "Thankfully, the comedic flow between Chrissy and John is effortless."

The GV80 is the first SUV developed by the Genesis brand. There are two more Genesis SUVs on the horizon with the third being an electric-powered model, according to a recent article in Motortrend.

Nuro is eyeing Houston as a pathway to success.

Photo courtesy of Nuro

Editor's Note: There are currently no autonomous vehicles for sale in the U.S. Nuro, like Cruise, is marketing self-driving vehicles. Autonomous vehicles, as defined by SAE J3016, can go anywhere at any time whereas self-driving vehicles operate under limited conditions.

Houston — with its sprawl and winding roads broken up across various neighborhoods — is particularly challenging when it comes to self-driving car navigation. And that's exactly why Nuro, a California-based tech startup that's raised over $1 billion in funding, decided to focus on the Bayou City for its self-driving vehicle delivery pilot programs.

"Houston is our first full-scale operations city," Sola Lawal, product operations manager in Houston, tells InnovationMap. "All eyes at Nuro are focused on Houston."

Photo courtesy of Nuro

Last year alone, Nuro launched three pilots in six of Houston's ZIP codes from Bellaire to the Heights. The first of which was a partnership with Kroger in March, followed by the announcement of driverless pizza delivery from Domino's in June. Last month, Nuro announced its latest delivery partner was Walmart.

Lawal explains Houston's appeal to Nuro in a few ways, but the challenging landscape is key. Nuro cars are learning from the narrow, tree-laden streets of West University or the pedestrian-heavy, ditch-lined paths in the Heights.

"There's a ton for us to learn, but it's a great microcosm of the United States in a number of different ways," he says.

In addition to its diversity within its street types, Houston, named the most diverse city in the country, represents an ideal customer base, says Lawal, a Houston native himself. Houstonians are open minded about new experiences.

"If you think and look across Houston, the average commute is over 60 minutes for people to get back and forth," Lawal tells InnovationMap. "As we surveyed across major cities we were interested in, Houston stood out as a place where customers said they don't want go to the grocery store if they don't have to or get in their cars again to pick up their pizza."

The third reason Houston was a great market for Nuro is the amount of regulatory support the state of Texas has — Gov. Greg Abbott announced the launch of the Texas Connected and Autonomous Vehicle task force a year ago — as well as the support at the city level.

"It's been a welcoming environment from the mayor's office down for us to be here," Lawal says.

Since entering the Houston market, Nuro's local operations have grown to over 100 employees. The company still has software operations out of California, and some work being done in Arizona, but the Houston is the largest — and growing as the company seeks new partnerships with more stores with a goal of eliminating errands once and for all.

"The way that we think about this is that this new technology and our mission of accelerating robotics for everyday life, is we will bring the people what they want," Lawal says when asked about what types of stores Nuro is looking to partner with.

Eventually, Lawal says, the plan would be to have every errand be delivery optimized with Nuro technology — from big-box stores like Walmart to your local florist.

"Our goal is to have a platform that retailers can connect to in order to provide easy and inexpensive delivery," he says.

Currently, Nuro's technology is still in learning mode. Nuro's fleet of Prius cars with staff onboard are driving up and down Houston streets mapping and taking notes on a daily basis. The company also has bots, called the R2 fleet, that are designed to be unmanned.

These bots are smaller than normal cars and are completely electric. Rather than being designed to protect passengers inside like traditional automobiles, the R2s are designed to be safe for people outside the vehicle.

"It's a new way of thinking about transportation and what our vehicles can and should do," Lawal says.

2020 is the year of these R2 bots, and some areas can expect to see them in action — specifically focused on Domino's pizza delivery — in just a matter of weeks.

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This story originally appeared on AutomotiveMap's sister site, InnovationMap.

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