Nintendo is doing an interesting promo for the upcoming Mario Kart 8 at the SXSW festival: they’ve partnered with Pennzoil and made a real world kart track at the festival, with modified karts to promote the upcoming Mario Kart 8 for the Wii U.
Fans will be able to race on the 1,000 foot track and use some of the popular Mario Kart items such as the red shell and banana peels that are found around the track. Then there’s the Penzzoil icon found on the track, which will speed up a driver’s kart. The different karts on the track are representative of Mario, Luigi, Peach, and of course, Bowser. Each race features four players doing a set amount of laps around the track.
Each of the four karts have mounted cameras that show the point of view of each driver, which is then transmitted to a large TV where the crowd can follow the race. The karts all appear to be electric, and move somewhat slowly — which makes sense, considering all the safety precautions that have to be taken into account (it’s not like professional race car drivers are behind the wheels). The race is open to anyone, but you’ll probably have to wait in line for quite a while to get a chance to participate.
All things considered, this is one of the coolest Wii U promotions we’ve seen Nintendo do. Check out some videos of the Mario kart track at SXSW below. As for Mario kart 8, it’s coming exclusively to the Wii U this May.
And of course, there was a rain delay on the track, with Mario and Luigi dealing with it as best as they could: