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Mercedes-Benz Cabriolets at Atlanta Classic Cars!

Now that the 2018 Mercedes-Benz E-Class cabriolet has arrived we have fresh top-down fun in all sizes! Here is some quick info to decide which on is right for you!

Cabriolet [kab-ree-uhley] noun

1. a light, two-wheeled, one-horse carriage with a folding top, capable of seating two persons.
2. an automobile resembling a coupe but with a folding top.

C-Class

  • Base price $51,200
  • Available as C300, C300 4matic C43 and C63
  • Small and sporty but still very comfortable

E-Class

  • Base Price $66,300
  • Available as E400 and E400 4matic
  • Mid-sized, powerful, luxurious

S-Class

  • Base Price $131,400
  • Available as S550, S63, S65 and soon, the S650
  • The epitome of a luxury cabriolet. Nothing better!

For most people the price will be the starting point, but there are more factors! For example, the C43 and the E400 would be similar in price. However, they have very different personalities! The C43 is aggressive where the E400 is smooth. Do you want exhaust note? That is the C43!

The S-Class might be twice the price of the E400 but it could be the only cabriolet you ever buy! It is a classic. There is absolutely nothing in the looks, power, interior or overall feel that could be better! Spend more now, but never say goodbye!

All of these cabriolet are equipped with amazing technology. I am personally a huge fan of the AIRCAP and integrated wind diffuser. The AIRCAP pops up just about the windshield and directs the air higher, over the passengers and then the diffuser blocks it from swirling back inside.

Airscarf is another top-down must-have. This neck level vent directs warm air over your neck and shoulders, making it comfortable to be top-down to very low temperatures.

The Mercedes-Benz soft-top itself is also fantastic. There is minimal wind noise and it looks so rich!

While I am at it…I ran across this site while I was googling and will now be using it for all of my Mercedes Technology References.

Come pick out your cabriolet today!

Mercedes-Benz Parking at Mercedes-Benz Stadium!

Mercedes-Benz Parking

One of my clients sent me this picture from a recent Atlanta United Game at Mercedes-Benz Stadium. This is the Mercedes-Benz Loyalty Lot located just steps from Gate 1! She said it looked a lot like the dealership parking lot. Maybe you can do a little shopping for your next car while you are there!

Here are the details:

The Mercedes-Benz Loyalty Parking Lot is located on Northside Drive between Magnolia and Rhodes Streets and closest to Gate 1 of the stadium. The Mercedes-Benz Lot will be made available for online reservation on a first come, first serve basis starting at 12 noon two days prior to each ticketed event at the stadium, and the reservations will close when all available spots are reserved.  Starting at that time, you can seek to reserve your space on http://parking.mercedesbenzstadium.com.  There is no charge for these spaces.  All vehicles entering the lot to park MUST BE Mercedes-Benz vehicles ONLY. If you are not driving a Mercedes-Benz vehicle you will be asked to park elsewhere.  Only those with a reserved spot, parking pass from Park Mobile and driving a Mercedes-Benz vehicle will be able to park in this lot.

If you happen to park there, send me a picture. I know I’ll be reserving my spot the next time I am headed to the Stadium!

2018 Mercedes-Benz E400 Sedan – E-Class with a V6

E300 safety

The redesigned 2017 Mercedes-Benz E-Class has been heralded as the most technologically advanced vehicles available! New safety features, steering wheel touchpads, Car to X communication and more! The redesign made it more spacious than the previous generation. The interior is beautiful, with a very quiet cabin and high end surfaces. If there was one fault with the car it was the limited engine choices.

The 4-cylinder engine in the E300 is fantastic. It is plenty of power for daily driving and the 9-speed transmission gives it great acceleration. It is smooth, quiet and has excellent fuel economy! I have been on many, many test drives when people did not realize that that the E300 was a 4-cylinder at all. However, it is sometimes hard to convince a V6 driver that the 4-cylinder will be adequate.

The Mercedes-AMG E43 is also a great choice. The AMG-enhanced V6 delivers more power and a more aggressive feel. It has a sporty ride with amazing handling characteristics. For a client looking for a powerful and sporty E-Class this is a good option. However, it is aimed more at performance than luxury. We lacked a middle ground – more power, less sport.

Well, for 2018 Mercedes-Benz USA is correcting this issue! The 2018 E400 4matic sedan will be arriving in the 4th quarter of 2017! Here is what I know:

  • Starts at $58,900
  • Unique standard 18” wheel design
  • 4MATIC all-wheel drive is standard
  • 3.0 liter biturbo V6 engine delivers
  • 329hp and 354 lb-ft of torque
  • 9G-TRONIC Transmission
  • Positioned between the E300 and the AMG E43

Our first 2018 E400 sedans are currently in production and should arrive in the US soon. There are still productions slots available for customization that will be ready before the end of the year. So, if you have been holding off on the E-Class, now would be a great time to take another look!

2018 Mercedes-AMG GT C Roadster at Atlanta Classic Cars!

*I misspoke in the video at one point. The GT R is only a coupe.

The 2018 Mercedes-AMG GT C Roadster came by for training today! This car is just beautiful. The proportions are perfect, the colors are exactly what I would pick for myself and it sounds as good as it looks! Unfortunately, this one is just visiting. We are lucky to have had two AMG training sessions this month alone!

So, what is a GT C? We have looked at the GT and GT S before. You certainly can’t have missed the GT R! The Beast of the Green Hell has been everywhere lately! The GT line-up now includes coupes and roadsters with various levels of power and appearance. The visual clues are easiest to see in the fenders and trim elements.

There are currently four versions of the GT available:

  • GT coupe and roadster – 469 hp and 465 lb/ft of torque. $112,000/$124,400
  • GT S coupe – adds power – 515 hp and 494 lb/ft of torque. $132,400
  • GT C coupe and roadster – adds power, wide body rear, rear-axle Steering – 550 hp and 502 lb/ft of torque. $145,000/$157,000
  • GT R coupe – adds power, wide body front, carbon fiber body work – 577 hp and 516 lb/ft of torque. $157,000

There is certainly no bad GT in the group! The deciding factors for most people would be looks or power. All four versions have hand-built one man, one engine V8s from Affalterbach. All four now feature the Panamericana grille. The roadster versions are power folding soft tops.

  • So, you want to drive it every day, put the top down but don’t need all that power =  GT roadster for you!
  • You like a weekend monster that the valet will park up front: GT R for you! (Magno matte green Hell of course!)
  • Daily driver with a kick: GT S coupe

See? It’s kind of a fun game to match your GT to your situation! I am sure there will be someone who daily drives the GT R but gernally that’s not how this game is played.

2018 Mercedes-AMG S63 Refresh at Atlanta Classic Cars!

Our MBUSA trainer stopped by to show us the 2018 Mercedes-AMG S63! The 2018 S-Class is what we call a mid-cycle refresh. The sheet metal is the same but there have been tweaks to the bumpers, lights, wheels, technology and engines. This refresh should last for three more years. The S-Class is generally on a seven year body style cycle.

On the exterior of the vehicle the headlights and taillights are the most noticeable changes. The new Multibeam headlights feature a three eyebrow look that is very striking. They are also ultra-wide for better road coverage. The taillights feature the same crystal effect as the E-Class and GLC-Class.

Inside the S-Class, the steering wheel is an obvious change. It is now a 3-spoke wheel with touchpads and new style buttons. On the left side of the wheel there are cruise control buttons and on the right there are voice and radio controls. There are also some new ambient lighting colors and leather choices. The COMAND system has been upgraded to version NTG 5.5. This is the same as the 2018 E-Class with a few functional differences. I will admit that it has taken some time to get used to the new system but the more cars it is in, the more practice I get and the more I like it.

Under the hood every S-Class has something new. The S450, now available, is the first V6 we have had in years! With 362 horsepower and 369 lb/ft of torque it should be perfect for those who want all of the luxury but do not need all of the power. The S560 features the V8 biturbo with 463 horsepower and 516 lb/ft of torque. 0-60 is estimated at 4.5 seconds which is amazing for a vehicle of this size. The new S63 is now 603 horsepower and 664 lb/ft of torque. It is silky smooth and blindingly fast!

The first of these refreshed models should be arriving shortly!

Hurricane Irma and the Mercedes-Benz VPC in Brunswick

With Hurricane Irma likely to hit the east coast and an Evacuation Order issued for coastal Georgia, it is likely that the vehicles currently at the port in Brunswick, Georgia will remain there for longer than expected.

Under normal circumstances a ship will dock in Brunswick, unload over a day or two, process through the Vehicle Prep Center over a week to 10 days and then ship to the dealership.

A hurricane will slow down all parts of this process. No ships in, employees under evacuation orders and bad conditions will all contribute to longer than average processing times.

Just a little insight into all of the moving parts in getting a Mercedes-Benz…

New European Delivery Travel Packages from Mercedes-Benz!

European Deilvery Sindelfingen

Picking up your new Mercedes-Benz at the factory in Germany is an amazing experience! Touring the factory, meeting the experts that assemble the cars and seeing your new car for the first time where it was built are experiences you should not miss! Once you have your new car you now have two weeks of complimentary insurance to enjoy. What should you do with it?

Mercedes-Benz offers several travel packages that guide you along! For $2000 you can add a 4-6 night adventure, curated by Mercedes-Benz! I have done this twice and thought the value was extraordinary! The Travel Department has just introduced several new options that look amazing! You can use this as a starting point for a longer trip, add extra days along the way or modify it to suit your plans. Every hotel I have ever stayed at with Mercedes-Benz has been top notch!

You can see all of the details on the new Euro Delivery Travel Site here. You can visit the European Delivery Website here (watch the video – you might know someone!). You can see information from my trips to Germany here.

I can help you book your European Delivery experience no matter where you live in the US! Get in touch!

Mercedes-Benz European Delivery Center

Standard Package One (1) night in Stuttgart or Bremen, Germany (for one or two persons, including breakfast); Additional nights will be charged to your credit card.  (Pick up and drop off points)
Alps Rally & Alsace Region
(in addition to standard package)
Five (5) nights in total (two persons, including breakfast)
One (1) night in Stuttgart
One (1) night in Strasbourg
Two (2) nights in Interlaken
One (1) night Geneva  (drop off point)
Black Forest Package
(in addition to standard package)
Five (5) nights in total (two persons, including breakfast)
One (1) night in Stuttgart
One (1) night in Baiersbronn
Two (2) nights Hinterzarten
One (1) night Munich  (drop off point)
Bremen, Prague & Berlin
(in addition to standard package)
Five (5) nights in total (two persons, including breakfast)
One (1) night in Bremen
Two (2) nights in Prague
Two (2) nights in Berlin (drop off point)
French Riviera Package
(in addition to standard package)
Five (5) nights in total (two persons, including breakfast)
One (1) night in Stuttgart
One (1) night in Davos
One (1) night in Lake Como
Two (2) nights in Nice (drop off point)
Kings, Castles & Mozart Package
(in addition to standard package)
Five (5) nights in total (two persons, including breakfast)
One (1) night in Stuttgart
One (1) night in Hohenschwangau
Two (2) nights Salzburg
One (1) night Munich  (drop off point)
Provence Package
(in addition to standard package) 
Five (5) nights in total (two persons, including breakfast)
One (1) night in Stuttgart
One (1) night in Montreux
One (1) night in Grenoble
One (1) night in Cannes
One (1) night in Nice (drop off point)
Slopes and Seaside in Slovenia
(in addition to standard package)
Six (6) nights in total (two persons, including breakfast)
One (1) night in Stuttgart
One (1) night in Munich
One (1) night in Salzburg
One (1) night in Maribor or Bled Lake
One (1) night in Ljubljana
One (1) night in Portoroz
Drop off location in Koper
Day trip ferry to Venice (optional)
Mercedes-Benz E300 Parking Pilot Demonstration Video

My friend Ben Wayne came by the other day to film Parking Pilot in the 2017 Mercedes-Benz E300.

Active Parking Assist helps you size up parallel-parking spaces as you drive by, using sensors in the bumper to determine if a spot can fit your car.  It then expertly steers the car into the space while you control the brakes and gear selection.  In any low-speed maneuver, PARKTRONIC’s ultrasonic sensors in the front and rear bumpers help detect nearby objects within the system’s field of view.  Audible signals and illuminated displays in the cabin help you navigate tight spaces with confidence.

The system is able to scan for adequate parking spaces at speeds below 22 mph.

Certain vehicles also have the ability to steer the vehicle out of the parking space.

2018 Mercedes-Benz S450, S560, S650, S63 and S65 MSRP Announced

The 2018 Mercedes-Benz S-Class is getting a refresh! Our flagship sedan was new for 2014 and 2018 brings us the mid-cycle refresh. It is not an entirely new vehicle but will have updated technology and a fresh look. I have not yet seen it in person but I expect to see it in a few weeks. The most obvious changes are the headlamps and the steering wheel controls.

New Standard Features:

  • V12 grille standard across all models (double lamella in grille)
  • New design front and rear bumper
  • Intelligent Light System with ULTRA RANGE highbeam headlamps
  • Smartphone Integration
  • Ambient Lighting in 64 Colors
  • Lane tracking package (Blind Spot Assist and Lane Keeping Assist)
  • LED taillights with crystal look
  • COMAND NTG 5.5 new generation
  • New generation steering wheels with touch buttons (no more clown!)
  • Wireless Charging front
  • ENERGIZING COMFORT control –It systematically uses the functions of the climate control system (including fragrancing) and the seats (heater, ventilation, massage), the console heating as well as lighting and musical atmospheres, and enables a specific wellness set-up tailored to the mood and need of the driver.
  • Omission of DVD changer

In addition to new styling it is also picking up a few new variants. We have not had a V6 S-Class for a few years and I am very interested to see what percentage of people will opt for the more efficient S450. Back when we had the S430 and S500 I think it was nearly 80% S430s.

The S450 and S560 will both be available in Two-Wheel drive and 4matic variants. The Mercedes-AMG S63 and the S65 will both be available from Affalterbach.  The Mercedes-Maybach expands from just the S600 variant to both the S560 and S650 so that you can have the extra size without the extra engine.

The S-Class is scheduled to roll out over the next couple of months. It would be a good idea to order early if you know exactly what you want! This is also a great time to order for European Delivery over the holidays!

Launch dates and pricing are always subject to change and change without notice.

S450 S560 pricing

Rally North America in my C43 Cabriolet!

Road Rally America

For my driving vacation this year I participated in Rally North America – Rally Appalachia 2. This event is a essentially a three day scavenger hunt with 70 other teams. We started in Virginia and ended in Alabama. Each morning we lined up, received a list of checkpoints and bonus point opportunities and then hit the road! It was totally up to the teams which checkpoints and activities they saw each day. The rally raised money for Hope For the Warriors which is a charity that supports veterans and their families as they transition back into civilian life. The whole rally raised nearly $150,000 this year!

Rally North AmericaThere was a huge variety of vehicles participating in the rally. Team Grey market brought their gorgeous G320 and ran it on all the tracks! The GLS on the right was actually a rental car and they said it was excellent for this event! There were a lot of American Muscle cars, a few exotics and some classics like a Corvair and vintage Suburban! It was so fun to meet other vehicle enthusiasts and trade stories.

Deals GapAlong our route there were classic automotive must-dos like the Tail of the Dragon and the Blue Ridge Parkway.  This rally is not a race. It is for points, not time, so speeding is discouraged but fun is not! My new C43 was a delight on the 318 turns of the Tail of the Dragon and the shady roads of the Blue Ridge parkway were great with the top down.

C43 sedan and cabrioletCoincidentally another team had also just picked up their new C43! Team Euro Trash arrived in this Brilliant Blue C43 sedan and we spent two days rallying together. They look good as a pair (and sound even better)!

road rally americaWe saw parts of Virginia, West Virginia, Tennessee, North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia and Alabama. Extra points for Welcome to the State signs! Fun fact, if you turn around immediately you get the Welcome to the Other State sign too!

C43 VIRTrack time on two iconic American tracks was included with the rally. We did quite a few laps on Virginia International Raceway (behind the G-Class – check out my Instagram video) which is a curvy, twisty course. The last day we were able to do laps on the oval at Talladega Superspeedway! That banking is serious business. 130 was my top speed in the C43. I had the top town! Other participants reported hitting 150!

Overall it was wan excellent way to see the US, with other enthusiasts,  while raising money for charity. A win-win-win! Thanks Rally North America!

Mercedes talladega

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