Drive Wire: June 17, 2016

Tesla in Nordstrom, a Mercedes bargain, new KTM cars, a camping advice website, and a goofy drifter.

What’s up guys, it’s Marisa Hunter and this is Drive Wire for Friday, June 17th.

Have you ever gone to the mall to buy jeans and walked out with a new car? Neither have we but now you can. Tesla is partnering with fancy department store chain Nordstrom to sell their cars, basically because Tesla hates dealerships almost as much as car buyers do. The first site will be at an LA Nordstrom acting somewhat as a test run, and if the partnership works out, Tesla will extend the program through other Nordstrom locations. For now, Tesla says the 400-square-foot store will feature test drives of the Model X on site. Which we assume means through the mall. If that’s the case, sign us up.

More good news for luxury car shoppers – Mercedes Benz has released pricing for the next E-Class, and it’s actually getting a price cut. 2017 “E” models will start at $53,075, a little more than a $1,000 less than the outgoing model. For that you get a turbo four-cylinder instead of a six cylinder engine, but Mercedes says the new model comes with more standard goodies, and the interior has been redesigned to be more in line with the range-topping S-Class. News about the rest of the line will be out soon, but for now, the E-Class looks like that rare thing – a Mercedes bargain.

Listen up speed freaks, motorcycle manufacturer KTM has good news for you. Although they only make one car, the track-special Crossbow, and until now it’s only been available as a kit. But soon, turn-key Crossbows will be available to those of you who have to have the fastest, twitchiest, most insane little Austrian car around. There will even be a small dealer network, presumably so that someone can tell you your track car needs undercoating. The first model for sale will be the 300-horsepower Crossbow R, powered by an Audi two-liter four-cylinder, in showrooms next spring. KTM is expecting to sell 30 or 40 of these a year. Seems low since 15 of us here at The Drive already want one.

Turning to gear, we have another awesome freebie in store for you. The Dyrt – that’s dirt with a y- is a crowd-sourced campground guide and review site aimed at improving your outdoor experience, and it’s built up a pretty diverse and passionate community of contributors. It’s an excellent resource for planning your next camping trip or, in our case, staring at great nature photography while trapped at your desk. See it all at thedyrt.com

In today’s ridiculous video, we have something more ridiculous than usual. If you know drift clown Tigerman, he’s back – if you don’t, watch a man in drainpipe shoes drift a one-and-a-half horsepower vintage scooter through water balloons. It’s beautifully, refreshingly, life-affirmingly stupid, and we love it.

That’s it for today’s edition of Drive Wire. For more, be sure to come back to thedrive.com, and follow us @thedrive on all your favorite social media platforms.