Originally forged with a brand identity based on luxury, sportiness and practicality, Acura has spent the last decade or so struggling with its image. The sporting credibility suffered a mighty blow with the loss of cars like the Integra, RSX and NSX, and recent years have seen the Japanese company attempting to recast itself as a technology leader.

All of that makes this latest Acura commercial, Let The Race Begin, even more difficult to understand, metaphorically speaking. The horsepower-horse race 'theme' certainly isn't difficult to fathom, with mecca-equine versions of popular luxury brands filling the screen. But the choice to make Acura's filly a flesh-and-blood creation seems odd, for the high-tech theme. Acura as "thoroughbred apart from the rest of the field" seems to be the rough message here, though we're not sure we're buying it. We're also not sure we're comfortable with how much these ponies reminded us of a certain off-putting robotic dog...

Looks expensive, at any rate. Watch the robot ponies run for yourself, below.

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