by Philipp Deppe | 17.Oktober 2014
The market launch of the new smart generation on 22 November 2014 brings the new era in the history of the smart brand to the roads and cities.
The international brand campaign entitled “FOR” has already conveyed emotionally how the brand sets itself apart from the competition: smart embodies the attitude of being FOR something and creates more urban joie de vivre. This attitude is now consistently continued in the two product campaigns. The campaign for the smart fortwo positions the vehicle as being “The urban original”. The campaign for the new smart forfour also continues the umbrella idea “FOR” and demonstrates the distinctive feature of the smart forfour as being “the smart among the four-seaters”. The international campaigns supply content for all communication channels, from print media and TV to online and social media.
“FOR sums up the unique quality of smart in just three letters. The brand, the smart drivers, and especially the employees stand for a new concept of mobility: more colour and joie de vivre, more room and clever solutions, more safety and driving fun in the city. We embrace this fundamental attitude in our communication with colorful, creative and varied elements – and with our new for two and forfour from November we will also put this concept on the road more emphatically than ever before,” remarks smart boss Dr Annette Winkler.
The product campaigns commence the second and third parts of the international launch communication for the new smart generation and are a seamless continuation of the “FOR” communication.
With the three messages
“FOR being a pioneer.”, “FOR loving the city even more.” and “FOR challenging the status quo.”, the commercial (http://youtu.be/0IGTAOmqCNg) shows that the brand and product values go hand in hand. In addition to a 30-second version, three commercials each lasting 15 seconds were made to convey these messages.
The TV commercial for the smart forfour focuses on the fact that this vehicle has been built to meet the demands of the city better than any other four-seater. Five commercials will be shown, lasting 60, 30 and 15 seconds.
The eye-catching print motifs for the smart fortwo have a new, dynamic and colourful look & feel, showing an iconic image of the car. The print communication will be implemented in two phases. In the first phase, the smart fortwo will be positioned as “The urban original” with the three messages “FOR being a pioneer.”, “FOR loving the city even more.” and “FOR challenging the status quo.”. By contrast, the motifs in the second phase will focus on individual features that make the smart fortwo unique and new. The topics range from the exterior (“FOR a colorful city.”) and interior design (“FOR more beauty inside.”) to the turning circle (“FOR rushing through rush hour.”) and packability (“FOR fitting in every gap.”) as well as agility (“FOR more punch per inch.”) and safety (“FOR more safety on streets and seats.”). MORE »
by Philipp Deppe | 16.Oktober 2014
One man, one G, one life’s work. That sums up the essence of an unprecedented global adventure. When Gunther Holtorf and his wife Christine set out in their Mercedes-Benz 300 GD to visit as many of the countries around the world as possible, the G-Class was just ten years old. Today, some 26 years, just under 900,000 kilometres, and 215 visited countries later, Gunther Holtorf drove his cherished G – christened ‘Otto’ – back home to Swabia.
The marathon vehicle will take pride of place in the Mercedes-Benz Museum in Stuttgart-Untertürkheim, where it will go on show to visitors in the Classic Cars section from 21 October. As a world-record holder, ‘Otto’ will also be immortalised in the Guinness World Records. Since the finish of this unique journey around the world will coincide with the 35th anniversary of the G-Class, the occasion will be marked with the launch of the highly exclusive G 350 BlueTEC Edition 35 and G 500 Edition 35 special models.
When the vehicle was officially handed over to the Mercedes-Benz Museum, Dr Dieter Zetsche, Chairman of the Board of Management of Daimler AG and Head of Mercedes-Benz Cars, was equally impressed by the driver and the vehicle. “I promise that there will still be a G-Class in the future. Will there be more characters of Mr Holtorf’s ilk in the future? I hope so,” said Dr Zetsche.
For 77-year-old Gunther Holtorf, his Mercedes-Benz 300 GD, which his wife Christine affectionately christened ‘Otto’, is quite simply the expedition vehicle par excellence for this kind of (torturous) tour. “In 1988, when I bought the car I was a bit more sceptical about the promise made by Mercedes-Benz, namely “Where there’s a G, there’s a way”. After all, I’d already seen something of the world beforehand and had a rough idea of what the vehicle would have to endure on this kind of world tour!” This initial scepticism gave way though to an unreserved trust in Otto’s capabilities as the years went by. Especially in precarious situations, the symbiosis between the Holtorfs and the G-Class grew.
Earth – Moon – Earth plus 80,000 km under gruelling conditions
The 300 GD covered over 250,000 of the just under 900,000 kilometres off-road, perfectly in tune with its innate characteristics. On gravel or washboard roads, in mud, on pot-holed roads or rocky uphill stretches in the mountains – for the suspension and chassis this punishing workout is equivalent to around 2.5 million kilometres under normal central European conditions. In addition to the challenging terrain there were also the disparate meteorological conditions to contend with, which ‘Otto’ took in its stride throughout all the world’s climate zones – from the unforgiving searing heat of the desert, through steaming jungle regions to the freezing cold of the Arctic climes. As if the demands on the 300 GD were not already high enough, ‘Otto’ actually always had to contend with overweight. Including expedition gear and food, with jerry cans, operating supplies, tools, recovery gear, spare parts and spare wheels, the expedition vehicle fully tipped the scales at 3.3 tonnes – around 500 kilograms in excess of the permissible gross vehicle weight. The roof alone of the cross-country vehicle had to take 400 kilograms. But according to the Holtorfs even that could not faze the world record vehicle: “Actually the G was always overladen, which is why I fitted it with reinforced springs and bad-road shock absorbers. Otherwise, ‘Otto’ remains like any series-production vehicle. The entire drivetrain with the engine, transmission and axles is still original. Neither the frame nor the body have shown any signs of fatigue.” MORE »
by Philipp Deppe | 15.Oktober 2014
After the weekend’s Russian Grand Prix, one thing is clear: the MERCEDES AMG PETRONAS has prematurely won the prestigious Constructors’ World Championship in Formula 1 for 2014.
As it also applies to the 2014 FIFA World Cup, the World Champions drive Mercedes. The official t-shirt, worn by the Formula 1 Team during the celebration after winning the title at the Sochi Autodrom, is now available online at http://shop.mercedes-benz.com or at the Mercedes-Benz sales partners.
Formula 1 fans are being fashionable on the winner’s podium while wearing the new official Constructors’ World Championship t-shirt. On the front of the black t-shirt is written in big letters, “WORLD CHAMPIONS 2014” as well as the name of the winning Formula 1 car, “F1 W05 HYBRID”. On the back of the t-shirt is a stylized laurel wreath, in the middle the Mercedes-Benz star and the words “2014 WORLD CHAMPIONS CONSTRUCTORS”. On the right sleeve is the MERCEDES AMG PETRONAS logo. MORE »
by Philipp Deppe | 14.Oktober 2014
Some celebrity guests from Formula 1 will attend the finale of the DTM (18th-19th October 2014) at the Hockenheimring Baden-Württemberg – former Formula 1 and DTM drivers Jean Alesi and David Coulthard will guest in Hockenheim, along with MERCEDES AMG PETRONAS Formula 1 driver Lewis Hamilton.
Hamilton, Alesi und Coulthard certainly know their way around the DTM paddock. During 2004 and 2005, the Formula 1 world championship title contender lined up in the Formula 3 Euro Series which is a support series to the DTM. Hamilton won the championship in 2005 in a Dallara Mercedes prepared by ASM, taking 15 wins and 17 podiums from 20 races. Hamilton was at last year’s DTM finale in Hockenheim.
“I’ve got fond memories of the DTM under whose banner I spent two years lining up in the Formula 3 Euro Series,” said Lewis Hamilton. “I’m looking forward to seeing old acquaintances and friends once again. Mercedes-Benz gave me the opportunity to try out a DTM car for the first time last year. The car was very powerful, and driving it was a lot of fun, even on a wet track.”
Alesi and Coulthard both lined up in the DTM with Mercedes-Benz. Alesi competed in 51 DTM races for Mercedes-Benz between 2002-2006. During that time, he secured four wins, seven podiums and three pole positions. The winner of the 1995 Canadian GP notched up a total of 122 points in the DTM. MORE »
by Philipp Deppe | 13.Oktober 2014
With more than 300,000 kilometers, a B-Class F-CELL from the current fuel cell electric vehicle fleet of Mercedes-Benz has achieved a continuous running record under normal everyday conditions.
The world’s unique and still running test show that fuel cell cars are reliable even under extreme stress and over several years. For this achievement, Daimler AG was honored with the “f-cell Award 2014″ and therefore was, for the third time, convincing with its developments in the field of fuel cell technology in the competition for the Fuel Cell Innovation Award. “The test is a step in the direction of series-ready application of the fuel cell drive train”, says the jury comprising of experts from economics, science and politics.
Produced under series production conditions, the Mercedes-Benz B-Class F-CELL has already been in day-to-day use with customers in the European and American markets since 2010. Today, the total mileage of the Daimler fuel cell fleet, which now numbers more than 300 vehicles, including numerous research vehicles, reaches far more than 9 million kilometres. Based on the current and pending results, the Mercedes engineers expect to identify further potential for optimization, which will flow directly into the development of the next generation of fuel cell electric vehicles. The company has the clear objective to develop a common drive train in cooperation with Ford and Nissan and to bring competitive fuel cell electric vehicles in large numbers on the streets by 2017. MORE »
by Philipp Deppe | 12.Oktober 2014
Lewis Hamilton won the first ever Formula 1 Russian Grand Prix today at the Sochi Autodrom, with teammate Nico Rosberg finishing second after a strong recovery drive from a first lap pit-stop.
The 1-2 victory is the team’s ninth in 2014 and sealed the F1 Constructors’ Championship for Mercedes-Benz. This is the first time in 120 years of motorsport that Mercedes-Benz has won the World Championship as a constructor. Lewis’ win means he equals the record number of wins for a British driver, set by Nigel Mansell (31). All of today’s top 5 finishers were powered by Mercedes-Benz, a fitting result to seal the company’s first Constructors’ title.
Lewis Hamilton: It was a good day and an amazing weekend. Firstly I’m so proud to have contributed to the work of this great team, to get the first Constructors’ Championship for Mercedes-Benz is a huge achievement. Massive congratulations to the guys back in the UK and Germany, it’s history for us. Today I had to manage the tyres a lot through the race; managing the fuel wasn’t too bad. The car felt great and I didn’t have to push too hard. At the end, when Nico was behind, I needed to match his times, which I did. I’ve thoroughly enjoyed the weekend here in Russia, it’s a great place. It’s been one of my favourite venues so far this year, so it’s very cool to have won the first race here. The fans have been amazing; I didn’t know so many people followed it here but they were all there in the grandstands and looked excited! The organizers have also done a great job – the layout, the surface and the whole event; I take my hat off to them.
Nico Rosberg: We are World Champions! I feel so happy for the team and the whole Mercedes-Benz family, today we made history. Thanks to everybody for their efforts, also thanks to the husbands and wives to send us your partners to make this happen. I remember well the hard times we had in this team. So now it’s great to be so dominant in our sport. But I’m also divided. Today was a really tough race for me. I just messed up in the first corner. I simply braked too late, which was unnecessary. So I flat spotted my front tyres and it was impossible to continue due to the vibrations. I had to pit, and on the prime tyre I had great pace. In the middle of the race I thought the degradation would start to increase. But very soon it was stable and I was able to push a lot. Then I managed to overtake Bottas. Also still at the end I was able to push, but the team asked me to control the pace as everyone was worried about dropping at the very end of the race. P2 was damage limitation. I really look forward to the last 3 races of the year with this outstanding championship car. MORE »
by Philipp Deppe | 11.Oktober 2014
Mercedes AMG Petronas drivers Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg finished first and second in qualifying this afternoon for the 2014 Formula 1 Russian Grand Prix in Sochi.
The team scored a fifth consecutive front-row lockout – and its ninth in all in 2014 – this afternoon in Sochi. Lewis’ 38th career pole position marks the team’s 15th pole from 16 races during the 2014 season. Both drivers completed just three runs in qualifying, using one set of option tyres in each part of the session. This marks the fifth time in 2014 that Mercedes-powered cars have secured the top four qualifying positions.
It’s an amazing feeling to come to this beautiful place and to race on this track. It’s fun to drive. Today, the laps in practice felt more special. In qualifying it seemed a bit harder to get that special lap but I’m grateful that I was able to improve. I crossed the line and I was just hoping I got it; when they tell you, it’s the biggest relief – a great feeling. The corners are mostly medium and high speed where you need a lot of downforce, so tomorrow should be a challenge. It’s a long run down to Turn One and we need to be mindful there are opportunities to overtake here. It was great to see such a strong turnout for the first Saturday of running at this new track. Hopefully we can give them a good show tomorrow.
That was a very difficult qualifying today; we had to adapt a lot of things. The track is new and so unique: the tyres last very long as the surface is very smooth. Lewis was just quicker today so I need to have a good start tomorrow. Starting from the front-row is still a good position to begin the race. I guess this will be an exciting Grand Prix; there will be some opportunities to overtake on the straights and I am sure we will see plenty of action on track.
by Philipp Deppe | 10.Oktober 2014
Round 16 of the 2014 Formula One World Championship brings us to Sochi for the inaugural Russian Grand Prix, held at the Sochi Circuit.
The Sochi circuit, located in the Black Sea resort of the same name, is the first purpose-built Formula One facility in Russia and will host the country’s inaugural Grand Prix in 2014. Located within Sochi’s impressive Olympic Park facility and winding its way around many of the architecturally eye-catching venues that were built for the Games, the 5.853 kilometer circuit will provide a fresh challenge to teams and drivers alike.
Plans for the inaugural Russian Grand Prix first came to prominence in 2010, with construction of the facility falling under the design supervision of Hermann Tilke. The track itself varies in width from 13 metres at its narrowest point to 15 metres at the start-finish line. Running in a clockwise direction, the layout consists of 12 right-hand and seven left-hand corners and combines both high-speed and technical sections.
With any new circuit, teams have no reliance on historical information. Data from other circuits will not be of particular use due to a lack of knowledge of tarmac characteristics, track layout, kerb configuration and so on. Predicting weather patterns, too, will be a relative unknown, with no prior knowledge of know how rain clouds form – i.e. whether they are blown in or form in cells above the circuit – for example. However, some understanding can be gleaned from simulations and video footage, while traditional methods and simulation tools are also much more heavily relied upon. By the time the teams arrive in Russia, each will have simulated thousands of laps of the circuit – ensuring the deepest possible knowledge of what will be believed to be the sweep of grips levels, performance parameters and likely setup configurations required. Initial impressions suggest that the Sochi Autodrom is a more traditional Hermann Tilke designed circuit, with plenty of long straights, relatively flat kerns and one or two key overtaking zones.
At any new circuit, the best drivers on the grid will come to the fore. They will be the ones who get up to speed the fastest and are able to seek performance gains the soonest while others are still learning the track and trying to understand the tyres. Each step of the race weekend can be viewed as a continual set of building blocks. A driver who gets up to speed faster, be it by a few laps or an entire run, will find himself working a few ‘blocks’ further ahead relative to the competition. He can therefore begin to look at setup changes earlier, which will naturally bring an advantage when it comes to qualifying and the race. Again, though, it is essential to follow the natural progression of the ‘blocks’ rather than trying to jump a few steps ahead, as this will inevitably result in a driver losing his way.
Lewis Hamilton: “It’s difficult to know what to say after a weekend like the one in Japan. As I crossed the line, obviously I was pleased to have finally won at Suzuka – but as soon as we got back to the pits and heard what happened to Jules it suddenly didn’t seem relevant anymore. My thoughts and prayers are with him and his family. This weekend is a new experience for Formula One as we head to Russia for the first time. I like a challenge and a new circuit always provides that. Of course, we’ve run through plenty of laps on the simulator – but you never really know what it will be like until you get out there and feel your way into the track. I’m looking forward to seeing what it’s really like and how our car performs there. It felt great in the race in Japan and I’m sure it will be strong again in Sochi, so I’m hoping to keep up this run of results that we’ve built in the last few races.” MORE »
by Philipp Deppe | 9.Oktober 2014
Huge throngs of people at a Mercedes-Benz motor show stand are nothing unusual per se. But when these colourful throngs of people congregate right at the main entrance to the exhibition hall there has to be a very special reason.
When the owner of the multi-award-winning show truck revs up the engine, the fat exhaust stacks belt out a mighty sound. When the 510-hp engine is quiet, thumping shock waves from the vehicle sound system reverberate with – what else – American country music.
However, this is anything but a US truck. The basis is entirely German, a three-axle Actros 2551 6×2. The owner and the mounted body (22 m3 silo) are Finnish. The owner’s name is Mika Auvinen. He is the one who has given the most powerful 12.8 l Actros a completely new outfit, inside and out.
The paintwork of the truck and the trailer alone took more than 1200 hours to complete. A little imagination on the part of the observer is required in picturing the four-axle silo trailer (37 m3) because the entire tractor-trailer combination would of course be barred from entering Germany due to exceeding the maximum permissible length by a significant margin.
But the tractor unit by itself is impressive enough, to a point where the German-Finnish co-production was recently able to win the “Nordic Trophy 2014″ as the best show truck. It is after all the first Mercedes-Benz truck to win in the 35-year history of this design competition held in Sweden. MORE »
by Philipp Deppe | 8.Oktober 2014
Mercedes-Benz posted the strongest sales month in the company’s history to date in September and the first month with customer deliveries of more than 160,000 vehicles (162,746 units, +13.8%).
Moreover, with sales from July to September, the company has had the strongest quarter in its history to date (412,018 units, +11.9%). Mercedes-Benz has posted double-digit growth since the start of the year (+12.5%) and thus a new record with sales of 1,195,156 cars.
“We have never sold as many Mercedes-Benz vehicles as in September and at the same time achieved the strongest quarter in the company’s history. We will now start into the last quarter of 2014 with double-digit growth”, said Ola Källenius, Member of the Divisional Board of Management of Mercedes-Benz Cars responsible for Marketing & Sales. “The growth drivers were our compact cars and the S-Class. With the new S 500 PLUG-IN HYBRID, available since the end of September, we are offering our customers an ultra-modern hybrid drive concept with the innovations and superior features of the S-Class. Until 2017, we will introduce nine more PLUG-IN HYBRID models on the market, which will stimulate further sales.”
On the European market, 534,263 vehicles have been handed over to customers since the start of the year (+7.6%). The growth markets were, in particular, the UK (+15.3%) and Spain (+26.6%). In September, sales in Europe climbed to a new record high of 77,548 units (+9.1%). At 191,205 units sold since the beginning of the year, sales of the brand with the star in its home market Germany were at the previous year’s level (+0.1%). Mercedes-Benz remains the most registered premium brand in Germany.
In the NAFTA region, the company posted plus 8.0% growth to 264,171 units in the first nine months. In the largest sales market of the brand, the USA, Mercedes-Benz delivered 233,211 vehicles to customers (+8.4%), thus raising sales to a new record level. In the United States the brand also reported a new sales record in September, delivering 27,315 vehicles (+10.6%) and was therefore premium manufacturer number one.
Since the beginning of the year, Mercedes-Benz has achieved particularly strong growth rates in the Asia-Pacific region: In China, the company continued on its course of success of recent months and grew unit sales to a new record high of 203,485 vehicles (+30.5%). The development of unit sales was also satisfactory in South Korea, where the company sold 26,557 vehicles from January to September (+46.7%), thus posting another sales record.
Mercedes-Benz also posted record sales growth in Japan: Since the start of the year, the brand has handed over 43,716 units to customers (+12.9%) and thus continues to be the most registered premium brand in Japan among the importers.
Among the model series of the Mercedes-Benz brand the new compacts remained one of the growth drivers in the last nine months: Worldwide, 335,190 customers opted for a model of the A-, B-, CLA- or GLA-Class (+25.3%). As the first member of the new compact class generation, the B-Class has sold more than 350,000 vehicles to customers since its market launch in 2011. Now, Mercedes-Benz has face-lifted the Sports Tourer, which was showcased for the first time at the Paris Motor Show. The revamped models will be available at dealers in Europe from November 29, 2014 onwards.
The high demand in the E-Class segment is also unbroken: At 260,997 vehicles since January, Mercedes-Benz has posted a new record here as well (+12.4%). The greatest sales growth since the beginning of the year has been achieved by the long version of the E-Class on the Chinese market (+76.7%).
The Stuttgart-based brand is still leading the luxury segment with the S-Class. Since the start of the year, the Mercedes-Benz S-Class has sold 75,391 sedans, or twice as many as in the previous year’s period (+105.8%). In September alone, 9,501 vehicles were handed over to customers (+139.3%). With the market launch of the S-Class coupe and the S 500 PLUG-IN HYBRID, two additional models of the S-Class family came to the market in Europe on September 27. MORE »
by Philipp Deppe | 7.Oktober 2014
Mercedes-AMG GmbH is accelerating into the fast lane for the autumn: the stars of the Paris Motor Show, the new Mercedes-AMG GT and the new Mercedes-AMG C 63, can now be ordered. Pricing for the new GT starts at €115,430, and for the new C 63 at €76,100.501 . Customer deliveries of both AMG high-performance models will commence in the first quarter of 2015.
“For us, the sales start of the Mercedes-AMG GT and C 63 is the start of a new era which is also highlighted by the new nomenclature. In this way we are positioning Mercedes-AMG even more aggressively than before as a dynamic sports car brand,” says Tobias Moers, CEO of Mercedes-AMG GmbH. “When sales start, both models will already be available as particularly dynamic S-models. I am quite certain of this: the driving dynamics, agility and sportiness will thrill our AMG customers. With these two high-performance models we are further reinforcing our brand claim of “Driving Performance”.
The new AMG GT: driving performance for sports car enthusiasts
The first Mercedes was a racing car and its most recent successor carries this heritage forward: with the new Mercedes-AMG GT, the Mercedes-AMG sports car brand is moving into a new, top-class sports car segment for the company. The GT is the second sports car developed entirely in-house by Mercedes-AMG. Its front mid-engine concept with transaxle and the intelligent aluminium lightweight construction form the basis for a highly dynamic driving experience. Its likewise newly developed AMG 4.0-litre V8 biturbo engine underscores the hallmark AMG driving performance. The first sports car engine with internally mounted turbochargers (“hot inside V”) and dry sump lubrication is configured in two output ratings: as the GT rated at 340 kW (462 hp) and the GT S at 375 kW (510 hp). The new GT combines driving dynamics and first-class racetrack performance with superb everyday practicality and efficiency that sets new standards in the segment.
With a power-to-weight ratio of 3.08 kilograms per hp, the Mercedes-AMG GT S self-confidently lines up alongside the very best in its segment. Top-class figures such as 3.8 seconds from zero to 100 km/h and a maximum speed of 310 km/h promise real racetrack performance. The GT also demonstrates that economy and high-performance need not be mutually exclusive with its fuel consumption of 9.3 litres per 100 kilometres (NEDC combined).
The market launch will commence with the Mercedes-AMG GT S in Europe in the first quarter of 2015, with the GT and other markets to follow. MORE »
by Philipp Deppe | 6.Oktober 2014
Mercedes-Benz Design has set the tone with four first places in the Automotive Brand Contest 2014. A jury of top experts has awarded four of its highest “Best of Best” accolades to models from Mercedes-Benz.
As part of this highly regarded, international design competition organised by the independent German Design Council – an initiative of the German Bundestag (lower house of the German parliament) – the exterior of the Mercedes-Benz C-Class, the exterior and the interior of the S-Class Coupé, and the interior of the V-Class have all been awarded the highest “Best of Best” rating. The jury reserves this honor for particularly outstanding achievements.
The C-Class was rewarded for its modern aesthetic appeal featuring sensuous lines and surfaces that exude harmony and an excitement that enthuses onlookers. As a stunningly breathtaking and exclusive two-door car in the premium segment, the S-Class Coupé won for its top-quality specification and accomplished sportiness. MORE »
by Philipp Deppe | 5.Oktober 2014
Lewis Hamilton won the 2014 Japanese Grand Prix with Nico Rosberg second, scoring the team’s eighth 1-2 finish of the year.
The race began behind the Safety Car in wet conditions, then was suspended at the end of lap two. The race resumed at 15:25, once again behind the Safety Car, which then pitted at the end of lap 9. From this point, the race ran uninterrupted on a wet track in mixed weather conditions. Both drivers made two pit-stops (HAM: L14, L35; ROS: L13, L33) and ran wet/intermediate/intermediate tyres. The race was brought to a premature end by a red flag on lap 44 after an accident for Jules Bianchi at Turn 7.
Lewis Hamilton: “Our first thoughts go to Jules – it overshadows everything else when one of our colleagues is injured and we are praying for him. Next to this, the race result doesn’t seem significant at all. Nico and I had a tough battle, we were pushing really hard. I had a big moment at Turn One when I was too late getting off the DRS as I was just pushing so hard but fortunately I was able to get back on track. The conditions were difficult throughout but I had more pace than Nico today and could follow him quite comfortably in the early stages. This is not an easy circuit for following another car or for overtaking, but he made a mistake out of the last corner and I was able to pass. The whole approach then needed to change to look after the tyres and make sure I stayed in the lead until the end of the race. But like I said, that’s not what matters today; our thoughts are with Jules.”
Nico Rosberg: “My thoughts are with our colleague Jules and his family and team-mates, and we are hoping for some positive news. Today was a really tough race with the wet conditions. I struggled a lot with the balance of my car on the intermediate tyres, so I had to push hard to keep Lewis behind me. I had a lot of oversteering which is why the rear end of my car was very nervous. That was really strange and I didn’t have the necessary confidence in the corners; we need to look into that in the next few days. It meant that Lewis was quicker today and deserved the win. It was damage limitation with losing only seven points to him. For the team it was a good result with another1-2.” MORE »
by Philipp Deppe | 4.Oktober 2014
Nico Rosberg claimed pole position for tomorrow’s Japanese Grand Prix with Lewis Hamilton second, to complete a front-row lockout for the team.
The team secured a fourth consecutive front-row lockout this afternoon in Suzuka. Nico Rosberg’s 12th career F1 pole position puts him level with David Coulthard and Gerhard Berger on the all-time list. Lewis Hamilton’s 2nd place is his 68th career front-row start and his 11th in 2014. This marks the team’s 14th pole position of 2014 and the eighth front-row lockout of the year so far. Tyre usage during qualifying was as follows for both drivers: Q1, Prime; Q2, Option; Q3, Option/Option.
Nico Rosberg: “That was one of the best qualifying sessions we did this year. The team did an incredible job to give me a brilliant car. It was so enjoyable to drive this wonderful track with that Silver Arrow. The balance was perfect, so I was able to push a lot and go to the limits in the corners. It’s always a great battle against Lewis; we push each other very much through the sessions. Sometime he finds a tenth there, then I find a tenth here. That’s why I enjoy the situation so much. For tomorrow I think we are well prepared. Even in the wet our car is very quick as we have seen in Spa this year. So I definitely look forward to the race here in Japan. Again I need to thank the incredible fans here. They wait for hours to see us drivers and give us little gifts. That gives us a very special feeling.”
Lewis Hamilton: “It wasn’t the best of sessions today but it was a decent recovery considering the crash in FP3. I just overcooked it this morning and the team did a fantastic job to put the car back together. Our mechanics are the best, they work so hard to get everything perfect. I feel good but I just wasn’t quick enough today. Nico did a great job, he looked very quick, particularly in Turn Eight, but I don’t feel like I’ve quite had the pace all weekend. I’m still second and we’ve seen races where we’ve come back from further than that, so I’m excited for tomorrow. I’ve heard there’s some rain coming, it’s going to make it very hard but it makes it more of a lottery.” MORE »
by Philipp Deppe | 3.Oktober 2014
The Renault-Nissan Alliance and Daimler AG enjoy a long-term and stable future, and all of their shared projects remain on track, the companies’ CEOs told journalists today in their annual media update at the Paris Motor Show.
Renault-Nissan and Daimler launched their partnership in 2010. The scope of the original collaboration in 2010 was limited to three projects primarily in Europe. The combined portfolio shared between Renault-Nissan and Daimler has since quadrupled to 12 projects in Europe, Asia and North America.
“The global scale of our projects ensures that this collaboration will continue to grow, and we expect to remain partners for the long run,” said Renault-Nissan CEO and Chairman Carlos Ghosn. “This partnership has accelerated the time-to-market for significant vehicle launches and has been an obvious strategic advantage for Renault and Nissan. We remain confident about our relationship for the foreseeable future.”
“Since its start in 2010, this cooperation has delivered what it has promised, and even more. And that’s how we will continue to work together in the future – with joint projects that establish a win-win situation for all partners involved and create value for our customers worldwide. This is definitely a track record to be continued,” said Dr. Dieter Zetsche, Chairman of the Board of Management of Daimler AG and Head of Mercedes-Benz Cars.
The CEOs’ comments come as the Renault-Nissan Alliance and Daimler get ready to launch their first vehicles co-developed from scratch this autumn: the new Renault Twingo and the new smart fortwo and smart forfour. The Renault Twingo went on sale in Europe in September, while the smart fortwo and smart forfour will go on sale in November. The city cars are built on a jointly developed rear-wheel-drive architecture which involved teams from both sides working closely together these last four years.
The three cars, which are all on display at the Paris Motor Show, are independent products with an unmistakable unique brand identity. The smart for two is being built at smart’s Hambach plant in France, while the Twingo and the smart forfour are being produced at Renault’s plant in Novo Mesto, Slovenia. MORE »
Mercedes-Benz and smart at the 2014 Mondial de l’Automobile: Modern Luxury from Paris – with Trendsetters from Mercedes, AMG and smart
by Philipp Deppe | 2.Oktober 2014
A family-friendly electric car, a luxury saloon with compact car fuel consumption, perfect city cars for more driving fun and sports cars that also cut a fine figure in 30 km/h zones – it is with this unique array of new models in five vehicle classes that Mercedes-Benz (B and S-Class), Mercedes-AMG (C 63 and GT) and smart (new fortwo and forfour) are setting powerful accents at the world’s busiest motor show.
Instead of short-lived fashions, the inventor of the automobile is presenting long-term trends for modern luxury – also and in particular when it comes to sustainability. The best examples are the new S 500 PLUG-IN HYBRID, the first luxury saloon with a combined fuel consumption of less than three litres, and the battery-driven version of the new B-Class, which celebrates its world premiere in Paris. Also in the spotlight for the first time is the new Mercedes-AMG C 63, the sporting pinnacle of the C-Class line-up.
“With the new Mercedes-AMG C 63, our performance experts demonstrate once again that characteristics like ‘family friendly’ and ‘race-track ready’ need not be contradictory,” says Dr. Dieter Zetsche, Chairman of the Board of Management of Daimler AG and Head of Mercedes-Benz Cars, speaking at today’s Mercedes press conference at the Paris Motor Show. The new top model in the C-Class line-up makes its debut on the Seine in two body versions – as a saloon and estate car. Both combine outstanding performance with unrestricted everyday usability and functionality. The C 63 is driven by a 4.0 litre V8 biturbo engine closely related to the power unit in the equally new Mercedes-AMG GT.
“The potential of this engine is best described with three figures: four litres of displacement, two power levels and one certified fuel consumption of just 8.2 litres per 100 kilometres,” says Prof. Dr. Thomas Weber, Member of the Board of Management of Daimler AG responsible for Group Research and Mercedes Benz Cars Development. Thanks to its amazing efficiency, the Mercedes-AMG C 63 is the world’s most fuel efficient V8 model – over 30 percent more fuel efficient than its predecessor and significantly more efficient than its less powerful competitors with six-cylinder engines.
The power spectrum ranges from 350 kW (476 hp) in the C 63 to 375 kW (510 hp) in the C 63 S. The AMG RIDE CONTROL sport suspension with electronically regulated shock absorbers, the mechanical rear differential lock and the AMG DYNAMIC SELECT drive program me are among its extensive array of standard equipment. MORE »