Amazon and Jeremy Clarkson hint at the future of delivery drones

Former 'Top Gear' host Jeremy Clarkson promises a world where you get running shoes thanks to flying Amazon robots.

Former Top Gear co-host Jeremy Clarkson isn't just working on a new motoring show for Amazon... he's helping the internet giant pitch its vision for delivery drones, too. Amazon has unveiled a splashy new Prime Air ad where Clarkson shows off a new, more powerful drone design (with promises of a "whole family" of others) and outlines how these robots would ship a pair of running shoes. All you'd have to do is place your order and plunk down a marker to tell the drone where to land. From there, the robot would use its mix of horizontal and vertical propellers to ferry your cargo (up to 15 miles from its home base) in 30 minutes or less. You'd even get a heads-up when the drone is close, so you wouldn't have to worry about someone swiping your package the moment it arrives.

The promo is as much a political move as an attempt to build hype. Amazon can't legally operate a drone delivery service in the US at the moment, and there are no guarantees that the upcoming commercial drone rules will reflect what the company wants. It's clearly hoping that the ad will convince regulators and the public that courier drones are worth some legal reforms.