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Newsletter Number 41
17th June 2002

Hello and welcome to another newsletter.

Hello again. I remembered to put the Sprinter story in this time! We also have news of a very lucky family from Melboune and a new MB Club website that is about to be launched.

We still have a hassle with newsletter number 31. When I posted newsletter 32, I accidentally copied it over the file for Newsletter 31. If anybody has a copy of Number 31 in hard form, I would appreciate getting a copy as I need to do it again!

Don't forget, that to check out any of the pictures in full size, just click on them.

John Green.

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How safe is the car you drive?

One family in Melbourne have found out just how safe there A class is and are now the subject of an advertising campaign from DCAP (Daimler Chrysler Asia/Pacific). The following is from a press release:
When a mother and her two sons walked away from a terrible car accident in their A-Class last December, their experience debunked the perception that a small car could not be as safe as a large car. This common perception has been a challenge for Mercedes’ Australian advertising agency, Clemenger BBDO, and together with the Mercedes-Benz marketing team they realised how this real-life experience could be used to communicate the strength of the passenger safety cell that is a feature of all Mercedes-Benz cars.

smashed-a-class.jpg - 32.77 K

The result is a series of print-media advertisements that started running nationally this month. The two-part advertisements explain the crash, and show the crumpled exterior and the intact interior of the actual car that crashed.

It’s a compelling endorsement, says Clemenger BBDO’s Greg Moore. We tend to think about safety and safety testing as something that happens in a laboratory. When a mother and two children are driving home one night and a car goes on the wrong side of the road and crashes into them, that’s real life. The two cars had a combined speed of 180 km/h and the family walked out of the A-Class. That’s powerful, said Mr Moore.

The A-Class depicted in the print advertisement was hit by another car that had speared onto the wrong side of a road in outer Melbourne on December 15 last year.

We had to retrieve the actual car to photograph its interior and exterior, said Mr Moore.

The closing speed of the impact was estimated to be around 180 km/h. Due to the force of the collision, the A-Class was thrown into the air. It then rolled twice before finally coming to rest facing the right way up. Incredibly, the three occupants a mother and her two sons were able to walk away with barely a scratch. They were protected by a Mercedes-Benz invention patented back in 1951 the passenger safety cell. Of course, Mercedes engineers have meticulously refined the concept since then, particularly in the case of the A-Class.

The unique structure of the A-Class allows the engine, which lies at an angle, to slide underneath the passenger safety cell in a frontal collision. The sandwich floor also helps place the occupants above the point of impact in a side collision. Many Mercedes innovations worked in concert with the passenger safety cell to help protect the family. The crumple zones absorbed the force of the various impacts. The belt pre-tensioners pulled the car’s occupants deep into their seats. The belt force limiters subsequently cushioned the impact, lessening the chances of seat belt injury. Sensors deployed the airbags in stages as they were needed. Even the carefully designed interior surface ensured nothing broke or splintered to create harmful edges.

Despite its compact dimensions, the A-Class actually offers safety levels similar to the larger E-Class sedan, said Horst von Sanden, Senior Executive Marketing Communications for Mercedes-Benz Passenger Cars.

Highlighting safety innovations is not new to the marketing team at Mercedes-Benz Australia and advertising agency Clemenger BBDO. A 1991 television advertisement, which confirmed the high safety standards of the Mercedes-Benz S-Class, won the prestigious international Gold Lion award at the Cannes Film Festival. The advertisement depicted the S-Class that saved the lives of an Australian family involved in a severe collision at an estimated impact speed of over 190 km/h.

The flying Sprinter.

OK, here is the Story from two newsletters ago. As part of our recent family holiday in our recently fitted out 412D campervan we went to check out the Mungo National Park and the Walls of China. The only way into and out of this area is by dirt road, the road in from Pooncarie is 85kms and road out to Balranald is 135kms. As we had heard so much about the place we decided the drive was worth it. The "incident" happened on the trip into Mungo from Pooncarie. The road was terribly corrugated and you had to either drive at 15kmh or 80kmh, at 80kmh you seem to just coast over the tops of the corrugations at anything less it shook you to pieces, all was well until we went over the small rise!

The other side dropped away sharply and then came back up again very quickly. As we approached this you could not see the dip in the road, just more red dirt (everywhere). The dip was not the problem, it was the second rise that launched us. You know the noise that a van makes when driving down a bad road, that constant drumming and general racket? Guess what's worse? When the noise stops and you get that sinking feeling in your stomach. I swear it felt like we were airborne for ages but it would only have been for a split second. When we came down all hell broke loose, it hit hard and the noise started again, it bounced a few times each time the suspension bottoming out hard on the bump stops. It rearranged the entire contents of the van inside all the cupboards.

We stopped to survey the damage, apart for a real mess in the back we were fine, the suspension appears to have suffered no damage and the sump was not cracked. The first thing the kids said was "Wow, can we do that again Dad"

The rest of the holiday was a bit dull after that! I would suggest to anybody who is out touring the South/West corner of NSW that if you have a car that can hack the trip, you should check out this area, it truly was worth the trip.

mungo.jpg - 56.90 K

New local Mercedes club Website.

The Mercedes-Benz Club of Victoria are about to burst onto the net in a big way. Hopefully in a few weeks, I will be able to give you the URL for their new website. I have seen a test site that they have been developing and it is great, easy to navigate and very informative. Stay tuned for more info.

To check out the websites of some of the other local Mercedes-Benz Clubs check these links:

Mercedes-Benz Club of the A.C.T
Mercedes-Benz Club of N.S.W
Mercedes-Benz Club of W.A

Cars for dismantling.

More dead and sick cars have arrived on our door step again. Here is a list of some of them:

1966 230S Finnie, bad rust, but excellent white interior and mechanicals, good auto.

1974 350SE, a tired old girl that was traded on the 380SE, has given many years of service, good auto.

1969 220, this is not to bad and might end up in the Cars for sale department by the next newsletter, would be a "good fixer upper" for someone

Employment opportunity.

We need more staff, but not just anyone. In a business as specialised as ours it is hard to find staff with the specialist knowledge and the passion that is required. For example if we needed another Technician than there is little point advertising in the Canberra Times. Mercedes trained Technicians are hard to find. What's harder to find is people who understand Mercedes-Benz parts. So guess what we have a position for? Anybody out there who wants a career as a parts guy let me know.....

Cars for Sale.

Well I think the 190E 2.6 has been sold, we are holding a deposit on it. The 380SE has also been sold. The big news for the week is the 260E that has come into stock. It is a real gem. Built and complied in 1989 and in absolutely mint condition, 146000kms, full log books including a service every 5000ksm since 10000kms, new tires and fully optioned. I have been driving the 300SE myself for the last few weeks and it is great car. Got over 700kms to a tank of fuel! Not bad for a big car.

Don't forget that to see a full size picture of any of the cars we have for sale just click on the picture.

190E 2.6 Sedan 1988 model.

190E-26-bronxe.jpg - 50.93 KRare 6 cylinder 190E, auto, 197000kms with excellent service history, unmarked cream MB-tex interior, cruise control, ABS brakes, multi point central locking, alloy wheels, SOLD (we think)More details


260E Sedan 1989 model.

260E-green.jpg - 40.70 KA rare find to see a car in this condition. Thistle green with as new Ivory MB-tex interior. ABS brakes, cruise, climate control, sun roof, electric windows, alloys with NEW tires, etc, etc. 146000kms with the best service history you could hope for. $23990.00AUDMore details


300SE Sedan 1986 model.

300SE-silver1.jpg - 55.94 KAn excellent example given the mileage. 286000kms but with a condition that looks more like 150000kms. Silver duco with blue MBtex. Grey lambs wool seat covers front and rear. Good service history, air conditioning, multi point central locking, power steering, tilt action sunroof, climate control, etc,etc Reduced to$13990.00AUDMore details


280S Sedan 1982 model.

280S-bronze.jpg - 50.33 KPossibly the best Hong Kong Import we have ever seen. 135000kms and a great local service history including a reconditioned cylinder head and front suspension. Immaculate interior. Cruise control, electric seats, electric windows, etc. $9990.00AUDMore details


230E Sedan 1986 model.

230E-green.jpg - 56.26 KLow mileage example for an '86 model at 182000kms. Full history, electric windows, central locking, CD player, willow green metallic duco with tan MB Tex trim, both in perfect condition. $14990.00AUDMore details


190Db Sedan 1961 model.

190Db-grey.jpg - 327.45 KExcellent find for the serious collector. Full history, recent respray and rebuilt diff. Perfect red trim. Plenty of receipts for recent work done on this car. $9000.00AUDMore details


220S Hearse 1963 model.

w2002-hearse.jpg - 49.54 K When is the last time you saw one of these? Built in Melbourne in 1963 using a Body made at the Australian Motor Industries plant in Port Melbourne. 114600mls from new and in very good original condition. The back doors still open for storage. New exhaust, brake hoses, engine mounts, gear selectors rebushed and heaps of other recent work. $11990.00AUDMore details


So that's it for another newsletter. Hope you liked what you saw. If you have any ideas or want to contribute any articles, pictures or other material please e-mail me here. Also don't forget that you can check out the old newsletters here

Thanks, John Green.