Toronto Section Goes to A Class Launch
On November 14th, Mercedes-Benz Canada hosted a party for the over 2,000 of its closest young friends at the Toronto’s Rebel nightclub. The Toronto Section members were invited to view the introduction of the new A Class which previously only available in Europe although Canada has had the B Class since 2008. Traditionally the A Class was just a smaller version of the B Class but this Mercedes has been designed for the younger entry level market such as Section President Harald Von Langsdorff’s daughter Tanisha as exhibited in the new slogan “ Hey Mercedes” . The “Set the Mood “ theme offered customized features to help the Mercedes-Benz driver make the most of every moment of the day with 4 distinct moods –Up and At It, City Hustle, Escape the City and Night Drive.
Four models , an A 250 hatchback and a 4 Matic model were on display with standard features as panoramic sunroof, LED headlights, Mercedes Me connect (Mnc) and Dynamic Select. Loud music, great food and drinks were provided a well as individual photos of each guest in a “Hey Mercedes” booth .
The event culminated in the raising of the curtain on the 2 models as the crowd surged to take a seat of have pictures taken indicating that this model will be well received in this young diverse city.
MERECEDES –BENZ CLUB OF AMERICA TORONTO SECTION
Job Description Event Co –Ordinator
Reports to Vice President Toronto Section
- Plan and execute an event calendar for each year with the assistance and training provided by the Vice President
- Plan a minimum of 4 events per annum on a calendar basis in advance
- Communicate and work with board members and volunteers to co-ordinate suggestions for events not limited to car shows, tech sessions, sports driving , wine and sightseeing tours
- Work with Vice President to provide a budget for Board approval for events
- Develop activities to encourage female and junior multi ethnic owner participation
- Co-ordinate with Mercedes Benz Club of Canada on joint activities
- Work with local dealerships independent and MB Canada corporate stores for participation in local events such as Toronto International Car show and ,new car launches and MB activities
- Work with appropriate banquet halls and restaurants to provide services for Toronto Section functions
- Co-ordinate the assignment of photography and section news letter write ups with club volunteers
- Attend executive board meeting and take notes as to decisions on responsibilities and follow up
This position is a voluntary position with appropriate travel expenses paid and business cards provided. Close co-operation and training will be provided by the Vice President as well as assistance from the Media Director and Sports Director.
Screenshot via MBCA Ottawa Section Newsletter. Contact Josef Ferner by email at JGFerner@rogers.com or by phone at (613)-325-4672 to inquire.
Toronto Section Meets at Cobble Beach Concours d’Elegance
The September 16th 2018 Concours at Cobble Beach Golf Club which is located just outside of Owen Sound Ontario on the shores of Lake Huron is their sixth annual event. Inspired by Pebble Beach, although at a northern location, this classic event has many similarities to Amelia Island and Pebble Beach in terms of location on the water, beautiful scenery and of course fine exotic cars.
This year over 117 cars in various classes were on display the oldest being 2 1911 Ford Model T’s .
Packard, Duesenberg and Rolls Royce were also on display, all of which had to be invited to show their workmanship. My favourite was a 1938 Steyr 220 roadster, a factory demonstrator shipped to Berlin in 1938 owned by Peter Boyle of Oil City PA USA This elegant beauty is one of 3 survivors of the 6 original cars built in Steyr Austria and Dresden Germany. The streamlined art deco design featured a wet sleeve all-aluminum engine,4 speed transmission and a full floating rear axle. The body was built by Glaser in Dresden.
Judges from various States and Provinces attended in their blue blazers and beige trousers to judge the various makes. Of particular interest were the motorcycles such as vintage BMW’s and a DKW that were on display as well as the famous Ditchburn boats and Miss Supertest from Gravenhurst Ontario. Artists such as Jay Koka , Gordon Walker, Don Kirby and Michael Irvine had their paintings on display for fellow car enthusiasts A sponsored Cars and Coffee event for attendees was held on Saturday with nice hats for the attendees.
Some Toronto members met at Claude Presbyterian church on highway 10 in the morning for the drive to Cobble Beach. A forgotten pass and a generator problem for 2 members caused delays and a cancellation to come to the event but long time members George and Marilyn Morita, Gilbert Mallette, Paul Henshall and Andrew Sanders of “Doctor Detail” were among the attendees. The morning drive with Maria in our 19769 280 SE coupe was nice with several batches of low hanging morning mist in our 2 hour drive
This year the weather was perfect with a nice breeze off the Sound. The Toronto group was there with their show cars . Andrew’s 2011 SLS AMG 2 door gullwing Mercedes attended along with a Doug Dees 1969 280 SE coupe and Harald von Langsdorff ‘s 350SLC rallye car fresh from the Great Race was also on display.
The Toronto Section had reserved Mercedes-Benz parking and display at the entrance so we could recruit more members and we did meet a potential new member with a 1965 250S sedan . The Toronto Section donated $400 to the charity of the Cobble Beach Concours and they are always interested in pre and post war Mercedes-Benz, so keep your eyes open.
For those MBCA members in the northern US and in Eastern Canada, this is an ideal opportunity to see Pebble Beach, Concours of America or Amelia Island cars in a unique setting. Next year the cars will not be the same as they can only return in four years similar to the Pebble Beach rules.
See you on the Beach
Pagoda in the Rockies
I finally got to put some kilometres on my son Oliver’s 1969 280SL in the Canadian Rockies in August despite the threat of fire and smoke. As I had not driven the car since 2011, I decided to put up the hardtop instead of the convertible top because of my concern for flying embers, however in the process of putting the soft top down I jammed it. I had forgotten that there are 2 chrome levers that allow the top to come unjammed. A frantic phone call to Dan Caron at Benz Barn resolved the problem and after topping up the clutch fluid and Power steering fluid, Maria and I were on our way to Canmore, Revelstoke and Vernon BC.
Having a four speed manual was ideal for the mountain driving as I was able to outrun anyone on the twisty curves and enjoy the vineyards of the Okanagan Valley. We highly recommend the 50th Parallel and Grey Monk Vineries for food and wine tasting.
My grandson Jaxson is enamoured by the Pagoda so before leaving for the mountains he was allowed to sit in the front seat on his booster seat to go for gas and ice cream while listening to Johnnie Cash on the CD player.
This car was originally delivered to Italy with a kinder seat then shipped to California and then came to Canada. It has made a return trip on Route 66 and now resides in Calgary and its future will be argued over by my 2 grand daughters and my grandson.
TORONTO TECH SESSION 2018
The Toronto Section held its 7th annual Tech Session on April 21st, put on by Mercedes-Benz Canada at their Toronto training facility near Pearson airport. 54 participants attended this event hosted by Arden Nerling, Events Manager of Mercedes-Benz Canada. The presentation of the new technology in the new Hybrid GLC 350e, CLS, G-Wagen, C-Class facelift and 2019 S-Class was done by Derrick Tan, Sales Trainer at the Training Academy, with the assistance of Lucas from Corporate Communications.
These new cars have more speed and technology than ever, to keep ahead of the competition. Innovations include a pebbled undercarriage sheet intended to reduce wind friction, and 64 different colours in mood lighting combinations for the interiors. As well, hot stone massage seats and inflatable side bolsters when going around corners are available. It was great to watch the current Mercedes-Benz AMG GTR at the motor speedway track in Virginia working the 9G-TRONIC gearbox .
Hybrid is the new technology, including the Burmester sound systems in many models. We also looked at the current ceramic brake disc technology, ceramic drive shafts and the new 9 speed automatic transmission with an internal electric motor, which can recharge the lithium battery in the car so it can run electric in the city, and gas or a combination on the highway. A demonstration on how to charge your Hybrid GLC 350e makes charging as easy as plugging in your tea kettle.
We even learned why sub woofers are now in the firewall and frame members, as opposed to the doors to provide extra airspace to make them more effective, and why doors are offset slightly to enable their opening in the event of a serious accident.
The apple and blue berry strudel as well as the pretzels were delivered and the writer admits to eating 2 of them, but there were none to take home.
Some new members and guests were present, as well as many familiar faces that have enjoyed the previous events, including members from the Mercedes-Benz Club of Canada. Doug Dees introduced the Vice Presidents of the Mercedes-Benz Club of Canada Yves Gosselyn and Robert Krech and Media Director Rubin Howard of MBCA Toronto Section. Paul Henshall provided an update on Harald von Langsdorff’s adventures at the Baden Baden Rally and the upcoming Great Race from Buffalo NY to Halifax NS, where Harald will be driving his 1972 450SLC. This meeting provided the new members not only to ask questions about the new technology, but also to ask existing members about their recent classic car purchases and share information.
The warm spring sunshine kept some of the members outside during the break to look at the latest acquisitions of their fellow members and to share stories.
The draws for a Mercedes-Benz expresso set and AMG mugs were well between presentations, resulting in smiling faces. Those that didn’t win a grand prize of an expresso set received a complimentary Mercedes-Benz Motorsport hat.
Many thanks to Arden and Mercedes-Benz Canada for their hospitality in hosting this event.
Details & Dates
- Prize: 2018 Mercedes-Benz S560 Cabriolet
- MSRP: $133,000
- Tickets are $50(US) each
- Last day to purchase tickets is Wednesday, June 13, 2018
- Drawing is Thursday, June 21, 2018
- For more information and to purchase tickets, visit raffle.mbca.org, call the NBO at 800-637-2360 or check your mailbox for an official mail-in order form.
2018 National Election
Mercedes-Benz Club of America will conduct a National Election this year to select four Directors at Large and six Regional Directors. The Directors at Large whose terms expire in 2018 are: Julie Bruggner, Scott Suits, Sr., Cliff Reyle and Frank Cozza. Regional Directors in the six even-numbered Regions will also be elected this year. Affected regions include: Mid-Atlantic Region (2), South Central Region (4), Southwest Region (6), Great Lakes Region (8), Southeast Region (10) and the Eastern Region (12).
Active members interested in running for office are encouraged to go online for information and petition forms: 1) Go to www.mbca.org; 2) click the ‘Login’ button at the top right corner of the home page and follow the log-in instructions; 3) click on the navigation tab titled “Community” then click on the drop down titled “MBCA Resources.” The printable petition forms are under the “Election” section.
Completed Nomination Petitions and Conflict of Interest forms are due at the NBO by May 15, 2018.
If you need assistance, please call the NBO at 800.637.2360, 8am-4:30pm MT (M-T) 8am-4pm MT (F). The deadline for submitting valid petitions is close of business Tuesday, May 15, 2018.
Dear fellow MBCA members,
Our Section president – Harald Von Langsdorff – will be attending this year’s 2018 “The Great Race” starting in Buffalo NY to Halifax NS. He has so kindly invited us to accompany him at the start point. If you would like further details, please contact Harald directly.
Dear fellow MBCA Toronto Section members,
This serves as a reminder that our 2018 Tech Session will be held on Saturday, April 21st at the Mercedes-Benz Canada Training Academy. The staff at the Training Academy have asked us to share with you the following directions in order to arrive at the correct location, as last year several members had been misled by their GPS systems.
Assuming you are using the navigation system in your vehicle (or some other navigation device) – enter 2750 Drew Road, Mississauga as your navigation point. Turn right at the end of the street and the Mercedes-Benz Canada Training Academy will be on your immediate left.
(We think when you enter the actual address of the Training Academy’s building – 7380 Bren Rd, Unit 2, Mississauga – in your navigation system, it might bring you around the other way, which is probably what a few of you encountered last year.
The Toronto Section of the Mercedes-Benz Club of America met at the 2018 Canadian International Autoshow, for a guided tour of this year’s Mercedes-Benz Display, followed by snacks and beverages in the customer lounge. Notable vehicles that were discussed include the all-new CLS-Class, E-Class coupe & cabriolet, G-Class, sprinter vans, and the highly anticipated Project One. As a souvenir, Mercedes Me offered highly personalized laser engraved keychains featuring the individual’s face. The event offered excellent oppertunities for club members to learn more about Mercedes-Benz’s state of the art technologies.
Toronto Section Goes to Best of Times Mercedes-Benz party
On November 28th the Retail group in the Toronto GTA hosted a party for the 1,000 of its closest friends at the Toronto Event Center. Toronto Section was invited to provide an historic car for each of the 6 decades Mercedes-Benz has been in Toronto. The new president of Mercedes-Benz Canada, Brian Fulton, was present to welcome the guests at the Toronto Center. Live music, period correct decor, great food and drinks were provided a well as individual photos of each guest in attendance.
The event was to celebrate the great year of the company in being again the best luxury car sales leader in Canada as well as the winner of the Formula 1 world championship and constructor’s championship which culminated in the Mercedes-Benz 1-2 finish at Abu Dabi on the previous weekend. This year represents the 6th decade of Mercedes-Benz in Toronto and the theme was to celebrate those great decades
The Toronto section was recognized for providing 3 cars for the event for the 1960’s 70’s and 90’s. A 220S Fintail, 350SLC Rally Car, and an S500 Coupe. The cars were detailed for display and had actors dressed in period clothes around each decade of cars to not only protect them but to be the backdrop for photos for the guests.
This is not the first time that the Toronto Section has provided classic cars for and event including the world launch in 2014 of the new S class.
The Toronto section teamed up with members of the Mercedes-Benz Club of Canada to have a joint Christmas party at the Glencairn Golf club in Milton on November 25th. Prizes were donated by the dealers and corporate offices of Mercedes-Benz Canada for 51 guests. In attendance from Mercedes-Benz Club of Canada were their President Neil Hoffman and their Vice President Yves Gosselin
Both clubs shared their planned events for next year at locations that will be convenient for both club members. The meal was a buffet style with Steak, chicken and Salmon as choices. This elegant club is set in a rural setting just north of Milton and is easily accessible from the 401.
Harald von Langsdorff and Peter Spitzer provided and overview of last year’s activities and those planned for 2018. The Member of the Year award was given to Rubin Howard for his work in the Toronto Section website and active participation in club meetings and activities.
Dear fellow Members,
My name is Rubin Howard, Media Director for the MBCA – Toronto Section. This past August, I drove my new 2017 Mercedes-Benz E400 4Matic across the United States of America. I’ve acquired many new experiences this past summer, and would be very pleased to share them with you. There were many highlights to this trip, from being invited to Jay Leno’s Garage and the Mercedes-Benz Classic Center, to touring the Nethercutt Museum, and enjoying the California sunshine!
The drive from Toronto to Los Angeles took me a total of five days, stopping overnight in Chicago, IL, Oklahoma City, OK, Albuquerque, NM, Scottsdale, AZ, and finally Los Angeles, CA. The 37 total hours of driving was effortless behind the wheel of the semi-autonimous E-Class, cruising across the country at 70 MPH, receiving a hot-stone massage from the E-Class’s all-new Drive-Dynamic Multi-contour Nappa leather seats. The Burmester sound system set to Sinatra, as well as, the 64-colour changing ambience lighting inside the E-Class kept me relaxed and at ease.
Once we arrived in Los Angeles, we eagerly awaited our private tour of Jay Leno’s Garage, along with Scott Brinkley, New Mexico Section president, followed by a private tour of the Mercedes-Benz Classic Center, in Irvine California. Jay Leno has always been a fan of Mercedes-Benz, having worked for the company in his youth. Currently part of his collection, an original unrestored 300SL Gullwing, High-speed race car transporter replica, 600, 280SE 3.5 Coupe, 300SEL 6.3, as well as, an E55 AMG. What makes Mr. Leno’s collection so spectacular, is the fact that each and every car is preserved and appreciated as what it is. Originality is greatly appreciated, and small imperfections do not deter from Jay’s enjoyment of his cars.
The Mercedes-Benz Classic Center in Irvine, California had many spectacular vehicles on display. A plethora of SL’s are to be seen, from W198 300SL’s, to W113 280SL’s, R107 560SL’s, and even R129 500SL’s. Once you have surpassed the shock of standing next to a dozen gullwings, there are yet again more gems to discover, such as an R129 500SL with 400 original miles on the odometer.
As well, a trip to the Peterson Automotive Museum, and Nethercutt Museum was due. Both galleries offer rich automotive history, and gorgeous vehicles to dream of (Scott was already dreaming of Jay Leno’s 280SE 3.5 in the group photo). Overall, a successful trip taken in a fine Mercedes-Benz. Cheers to “The Best or Nothing!”
This past September, MBCA Toronto was invited to be a part of the “Car Club” display at the 2017 Cobble Beach Concours’ D’elegance. Club members started off the morning by hosting a group drive to the event. Despite member Jeff Zeldin’s 1969 Mercedes-Benz 280SL experiencing alternator trouble, the group carried on. Harald Von Langsdorff, Peter Spitzer, and Rubin Howard arrived shortly after helping Jeff, in their 1972 350SLC, 2002 SL500, & 2017 E400.
At the event we saw rare vehicles such as an SLS AMG, 450SEL 6.9, 600 LWB, and more. a 300SEL 6.3 W109 was to be found on the lawn at the Concours. The variety and amount of vehicles brought to the event by members was impressive. Below, photographs of the vehicles at this year’s Cobble Beach Concours’ D’elegance event.
CREEMORE CLASSIC CAR SHOW
Toronto Section visited the 3rd annual classic car show on July 15 2017. Although it was a 2 hour drive to the Town of Creemore just off Airport Road, the time was made up for beautiful weather and spectacular scenery. The winding 2 lane highway is a favourite for speeders going to the cottage but due to the number of accidents and subsequent deaths the Provincial Police are always waiting at the top of a hill or in one of the many small towns along the way.
John Geist and Doug Dees brought their 1965 230SL Pagoda and 1969 280SE coupe respectively and secured a good spot on Mill Street in the shade. A visit to the Creemore wouldn’t be complete without sampling the free beer available in several samples for the public. A public tour is also available. Other members showed up including Roland Wilhelm in his silver 1961 190SL. The gates opened at 7a.m. and if the Mercedes owners didn’t arrive together they would be scattered across the town or at the edges. We will try to co-ordinate the arrivals better next year.
The Mercedes-Benz Club of America – Toronto Section, as well as, the Mercedes-Benz Club of Canada met at the 2017 Orangeville Jazz and Blues Festival, hosted in the heart of Orangeville, Ontario. Amongst the many domestic vehicles displayed at the show, there were some German marvels to be found. Doug Dees, Vice-President of the MBCA – Toronto Section brought his stunning 1969 Mercedes-Benz 280SE coupe. Rubin Howard, Media Director of the MBCA – Toronto Section showed up with his newly acquired 1986 Mercedes-Benz 560SL Roadster. As well, Yves Gosselin of the Mercedes-Benz Club of Canada displayed his mint 1997 Mercedes-Benz SL500 Roadster. A W108 280SE 4.5, R107 350SL, & C126 560SEC were to be discovered on the show grounds.
The Toronto Section held its 6th annual Tech Session put on by Mercedes-Benz Canada on April 22nd at their Toronto training facility near Pearson airport. A record 50 participants attended this event hosted by Arden Nerling, Events Manager of Mercedes-Benz Canada. The presentation by Derrick Tan, Sales Trainer at the Training Academy included a review of some of the technology in the new 2017 SL models and the E400. This was followed by a walk around of a 2017 AMG SL63 and an E400 wagon that were on display. The technology highlighted for the SL was Magic Sky control and Magic Vision Control. Magic Sky Control allows the sun roof to be darkened at the touch of a button. The Magic Vision Control is a new technology that direct windshield washer fluid in front of the wiper blade in the direction of the wiper’s sweep. This eliminates the overspray that occurs in regular systems and provides a more efficient cleaning of the windshield.
Derek reminded us that Mercedes vehicles are built for the German autobahn and the performance, aerodynamics and safety features in each vehicle is phenomenal.
Derek also demonstrated a cut-away version of AMG’s new 4.7 “hot turbo” engine as well as the new hybrid transmission from Mercedes. This transmission has 9 speeds and a built-in electric motor that provides instant torque and better fuel mileage.
The apple and blueberry strudel as well as the pretzels were delicious and, along with the complimentary coffee, all disappeared.
There were draws for a Mercedes-Benz beach towel, thermos, and BBQ set between presentations. In addition to those lucky winners, ever attendee received a complimentary sample of Sonax car wash and a Mercedes-Benz pen with tablet pointer built-in.
The warm spring sunshine kept some of the members outside during the break to look at the latest acquisitions of their fellow members and to share stories.
Mercedes-Benz & the MBCA Toronto-Section invite you to the 2017 Spring TechSession. M-B Canada will update us in detail about the latest developments in Mercedes-Benz technology & safety. Also discussed will be the new models & their advanced features. Some hands-on learning is included. As well, members will be provided with snacks.
Date: Saturday, April 22nd, 2017
Location: Mercedes-Benz Logistic Centre & Training Academy (7380 Bren Road, Unit 2 Mississauga, Ontario L4T 1H4)
- welcome & Introductions
- Technical Presentations
- Break with complimentary Pretzels, Coffee, & Strudel
- Video Presentations
2017 TORONTO INTERNATIONAL CAR SHOW
The Toronto Section met on February 23rd for a private viewing of the new models arriving for 2017. Arden Nerling of Mercedes-Benz Canada was our host for the evening and shared with us information on the organization and layout of the displays for this year’s show which included specialty designed extruded lighted aluminum bars that formed the backdrop of the Mercedes-Benz display which was used last year as well.
Arden also explained how this new display custom built for Toronto was disassembled and re assembled from last year. Mercedes-Benz Canada had new models on display some of them being specially sent from Germany for this show.
A new C Class convertible was introduced and the S class convertible was also on display along with a beautiful red E class station wagon.
On display was the four wheel drive Sprinter class that was built in Germany. Mercedes-Benz Canada showed some rolling workshops for the Sprinter and Metrus class as well that are very popular with construction and delivery companies.
The new S Class cabriolet was also on display that featured a beautiful exterior that highlighted the new design features of the S Class models.
There was as well as a display of the AMG vehicles which are very popular including a shimmering green AMG GT coupe and a red convertible
For those that enjoy off roading in luxury, a yellow AMG G Wagen with Unimog under pinnings was on display for those that wanted to have something different in a truck. At a price tag of $328,000 and completely sold out, our members can only dream of having one
The accessories booth had items at a 20% discount from the normal retail prices which members took advantage. Members were given a 360 degree VR experience through a You Tube video that can be accessed through your phone Mercedes posters were given out featuring the new models. Members received a $5 rebate on their admission to the show
The tour ended with a private visit to the Mercedes-Benz lounge for refreshments and cookies where you had to show your Mercedes-Benz key fob to gain entrance. Peter Spitzer spoke to the members about the upcoming Performance driving events and Harald von Langsdorff spoke about the need for assistance in organizing club events and asked for volunteers to take up board positions. In order to provide the membership with events and activities, additional volunteers are needed.
We look forward to the Tech session in April at the Mercedes-Benz Training Center at the airport to learn more about the new models and technical features.
For 2016, we are offering a new and completely different experience for our annual Year End Party – we will be attending the Toronto Christmas Market at the Distillery District.
Christmas Markets are a very German tradition. More than fitting for us in the Mercedes-Benz club.
Instead of our typical formal sit down dinner, we also decide to make this a free event for our members. There is no formal cost or fee to attend this event. We will present very member who registers a $50.00 food voucher to be used at the Christmas Market. With these, we want to give members the opportunity to sample a variety of seasonal foods and beverages. The vouchers can be used at many different vendors on site in increments. Here some of them:
-Das Kartoffelhaus (Those Potatoes On A Stick)
-Woodcutters (Sausage, Hotdog, Steak Sandwiches)
-Oktoberfest Sausage (Hot Dogs On Egg Bun)
-Kaese Sandwich (Grilled Cheese Sandwiches)
The evening will start with reception at Mercedes-Benz Downtown Toronto 761 Dundas St. East • Toronto, ON M5A 4N5. Mercedes Downtown has offered us free parking and a brief tour of their facility. They also graciously offered us a free shuttle ride to the nearby Distillery district and the Toronto Christmas Market. Here, we will stroll in small groups and take in the views, sounds and smells of the Holiday Season. Shuttles are scheduled to take us back to the parked cars. Feel free to stay a bit longer, in which case just hail one of the waiting taxis.
- Meet at your Mercedes-Benz Downtown dealership (4-5PM)
- Park our member cars
- Reception in M-B Downtown showroom (5-6PM)
- Organized shuttle rides to the Toronto Christmas Market (6PM)
- Stay at the Christmas Market (6-8PM)
- Return via shuttles to the parked cars (8PM)
We have reserved 25 vouchers (feeds 2-3) and will be offered on a first come first serve basis (one per family).
We hope to see as many of you as possible to finish our club season in style.
Your MBCA Toronto Section Team.
If you encounter any problem, please contact Harald (905) 838 1980
2016 was a busy year for Advanced Driving School events. With 5 events at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park (Mosport), one trip to Watkins Glen in the Finger Lake NY region and one to Calabogie (near Ottawa) there were some great driving opportunities. In addition for anybody that has grown through the school to S-level can apply to attend the annual Racing school. Section Sports Director Peter Spitzer attended all the events and here is his report.
After a few years of enjoying the continuous learning experience of the ADS at Mosport I was signed off into the S Level in 2015. With this in hand I applied to attended the Racing school and was accepted. Going through the levels raised my skills and awareness alike; a benefit I feel every day while driving in my day to day routines. We only see a few members
coming out to the events. We did get a good set of pictures with Ray learning how to get more out of his über-cool E63 Estate.
Season start was also the beginning and end of my new-to-me previously enjoyed addition to my garage. I found the 2001 CLK55 AMG in California and with only 62K Miles it seemed like the perfect car for these events. This excitement was short-lived as on the first day out the engine lights announced the painful beginning of an engine self destruction and a 5 month ongoing process to get it back in shape. A crushed piston was the result most likely caused by detonation which then scratched the cylinder wall beyond possible repair. A replacement engine was installed but tuning to prevent a similar incidence took most of the summer to complete.
After the Saturday session closes out the group goes for a “track walk” to learn from the days experience and see the track and surface close up. Well, while it is call “track walk” it is really a cruise from one corner to the next to get a close look. Derek Hanson the chief instructor provides a fantastic insight on the track, how to use it and how it applies to driving skills.
In June MBCA and Lotus organized a combined performance driving school day on the Watkin Glen International Raceway. This was the first season after all new track surface was applied and provided amazing grip. Gilbert led the trip down through upstate New York and added a beautiful drive down to the event.
Advanced Driving School is an amazing opportunity to improve driving skills, learn and enjoy your car and all that on a controlled track.
See you out there at the next event and in 2017!
A few weekends ago Toronto Section President Harald von Langsdorff and Minuteman Section member Steve McKelvie participated in the Pumpkin Run Rally.
What follows is the report from his Co-Driver and Navigator Steve McKelvie.
Last weekend Harald and I took part in the 2016 Pumpkin Run rally hosted by the Northeast Rally Club in Millsboro, Delaware. We were fortunate that the rains had stopped a few days before, as flooded roads due to excessive rainfall have been problematic in this area of Delaware. Still the rallymaster had to issue an emergency speed in one area to account for one road we crossed that had a completely flooded section.
As I noted in an earlier post, we had planned on using Harald’s recently acquired 1972 Mercedes-Benz 350SLC, but some engine issues prevented us from using that car. As a result, we used Harald’s 2015 Mercedes-Benz GLA 45 AMG. This is a very good performing car when it comes to starting and stopping with its 2.0 litre 375 horsepower engine and big disc brakes.
We enjoyed catching up with some friends who we have met at previous rallies. It was particularly good to see Brian Blood/Steve Keller who campaign a 1969 Saab 96. This Saab was originally rallied by the Pacific Northwest USA rally legend, Satch Carlson. Brian and Steve are a very competent rally crew, which they demonstrated last year by winning this rally outright. Brian and Steve have been very helpful to Harald and I.
Harald and I finished 5th Overall in the 36 cars that started the rally.rall in the 36 cars that started the rally. We were satisfied with this result as it shows that we can be competitive, but we know that we have to shave away a few more seconds. There were 14 scored legs and our total error was 49 seconds or about 3.5 seconds per leg.
2016 Pumpkin Run Rally Results
Harald and I did manage to zero one leg, so we were awarded an Ace. This Ace sticker is shown below.
Harald and I enjoyed this rally and meeting the other rally competitors, organizers, and the rallymaster. We look forward to competing in another Northeast Rally Club rally next spring.
The full report of this rally can be found here.
Steve is a member of the MBCA Minuteman Section and runs an very interesting motorsport blog. Get yourself a cup of coffee and some time and start reading here.
Last weekend, Section President Harald von Langsdorff participated in the inaugural Brack Classic Hill Climb close to Owen Sound. Here is his report.
A brief video incl one of my hot runs can be found here.
To my knowledge there has not been a hill climb in Ontario for at least 50 years.
One of the main reasons for the organizer Bob DeShane was to rejuvenate the idea of a hill climbs in Ontario. For whatever political, socio-economic or ecological reasons, this racing activity has been absent on the motor sport calendar for too long.
The new event coincides well with the Cobble Beach Concours d’Elegance, held close by on the shores of Georgian Bay which is now in its fourth year. In fact, the Cobble Beach organizers offered preferred entrance and exhibit space for all hill climb cars. The Cobble Beach event promotes itself off the Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance saying that it has “larger stones”.
Bob is to be applauded to be able to unite local municipalities, sponsors, media and the neighboring public to support this project. The least of his worries were the competitors, who were eager to attend this reinvented motorsports event.
A hill climb is basically as race up a hill, against the clock, one car at the time.
There was a wide variety of cars and motorcycles that entered this hill climb event in six categories.
- Vintage Cars (Pre 1963) V
- Historic Cars (1963 – 1972) H
- Historic Motorcycles (1963 – 1972) HM
- Classic Cars (1973 – 1989) C
- Modern Cars (Post 1989) M
- Modern Motorcycles (Post 1972)
Modern Class was a late addition and allowed me to participate in my GLA45.
With just 1.15km the hill climb was not too long. The course had a mild climb, some over the crest and off camber corners and a chicane of hay bales. We had each one practice and 4 timed runs. These times were accumulated to determine the class and over-all winner.
As you see, there were some very powerful cars in the lineup. However, powerful alone does not win a hill climb. It needs a good combination of acceleration, braking, handling, consistency and a wee bit of driving skills.
In my case, the combination seems to have been just right on this day. Having a modern all-wheel drive car certainly helped on this rainy day.
During the course of the day, the organizers, participants, elected officials and locals were all, thrilled, educated, amazed, breathless and highly entertained and left hopeful that this new event will thrive in the future and that the weather will be a little better next time.
More information including pictures, videos and a very complimenting mentioning of your truly find here.
Members of the Toronto Section took advantage of bright sunshine to participate in our first event at the Copper Kettle Classic on August 27 2016. John Geist with his son Andrew in his 1965 230 SL arranged to meet with Doug Dees in his 1969 280SE coupe early on Saturday morning in order to secure our reserved parking area in down town Creemore which is just 1 ½ hours north of Toronto ,home of the famous Creemore Brewery.
Marcus van Bers in his white 280SL Pagoda soon joined us on the main street along with Peter Spitzer in his SL Silver Arrow.
Although most of the antique cars attending were American along with a few British vehicles, Toronto Section cars were popular with visitors. Main Street was blocked off and car clubs had to reserve in advance to receive the coveted midtown spots. An unknown Pagoda was spotted not part of the club yet. The owner appreciated the tips and advice about restoring and maintaining her new acquisition
The Creemore Brewery offered many small samples of various German beers using the original ingredients from Germany and the hot day required a few samples to remain cool. Food was plentiful from outdoor vendors or in the nice restaurants in the downtown area. Some of us enjoy a nice lunch at a French bistro. Visitors included those from Norway and other European countries who appreciated seeing so many automobiles and motorcycles. Owners who did not make reservations had to park on the outskirts of town to alleviate congestion.
After the Copper Kettle show a group of Section members took the scenic rout over the mountains with beautiful views of Georgian bay in the distance. Special Thanks to Gerry Gallant with his 427 Cobra for the guided tour .
More information can be found here:
We are looking forward to the 2017 event.
We had our first successful TechSession lite.
With about 20 member is attendance we can officially call this test event a full success.
Even the occasional rain could not stop some members to bring out their convertibles.
Sheik, our MBCA member and owner of A2Z a Automobiles in Oshawa, graciously hosted us on his BBQ and provided the drinks.
Everybody had a chance to see the work that was performed at Harald’s 6.3. He can’t wait to take her to his next event or Classic Car Rally.
We could also see first hand the complete work shops as well as other cars A2Z was currently restoring.
Stay tuned for a TechSession Lite later in the Fall.
Beautiful and rarely seen automobiles will herald in a new tradition of distinction and elegance on the shores of Georgian Bay.
On September 17 & 18, 2016, Cobble Beach Golf Resort Community presents the 4th annual Cobble Beach Concours d’Elegance. On Saturday September 17, 2016 the Participant tour will take place in Grey County. Sunday, September 18, 2016 the Concours will be held on the 18th fairway of Cobble Beach, this extraordinary bayside course will play host to a rich assortment of international automobiles and distinguished guests.
The Toronto Section has been invited to bring 10-15 cars to the Sunday 18th, event.
Here is the invitation I received recently from Adam Lytwyniuk, Registrar at Cobble Beach Concours d’Elegance:
We are planning on adding a select few car clubs to our car club area. The placement will be either on the driving range (where the 190SLs were a couple of years ago, or near the food vendors). We think that the MB club would be a good fit if you are interested. We are looking for a minimum of 10 cars. The arrangements would be the same as we did for the 190SLs but generally this is what we are thinking:
- Invite a select few high end clubs (like MB, Aston Martin, Porsche, Jaguar for example)
- Allow all years of vehicles. We would still like quality vehicles, but a mix reflecting your roster or how you would like to be perceived.
- The cost would be a $40 per vehicle donation plus a general admission ticket per person ($30+HST)– a tax receipt is issued directly from Sunnybrook with respect to donations. Some clubs have their members donate to the club and claim the tax receipt for the club, while others have members donate directly. There is a donation button on our website that directs you to the appropriate Sunnybrook page.
- We likely will allow the club to have one banner with their name.
The date of the show is September 18th this year.
We will do this on a by first come – first serve basis.
Looking forward seeing you there.
We are invited to the MBCC Annual Car Show & Picnic.
Sunday, July 3rd 2016
Gates open at 11:00am
At the KW Optimist Club
2001 Kressler Rd, Waterloo, ON N2J 3Z4
Tel: (519) 885-1119
Admission is a recommended donation of $5 per person or $10 per car to the KW Optimist Club.
Food is available for purchase from the KW Optimist club.
Or bring your own lunch
Prizes, Car Judging
Enjoy a great afternoon with some great vehicles!
Rain or Shine, Indoor Facilities
Bring Lawn Chairs to Relax
For more information contact Yves Gosselin9103@hotmail.com
TORONTO TECH SESSION 2016
The Toronto Section held its 5th annual Tech Session put on by Mercedes-Benz Canada on April 23rd at their Toronto training facility near Pearson airport. 47 participants attended this event hosted by Arden Nerling, Events Manager of Mercedes-Benz Canada. The presentation of the new technology in the new 2017 C 300 4 Matic coupe and GLE was done by Derrick Tan, Sales Trainer at the Training Academy with the assistance of Rob Takacs, Corporate Sponsorship’s & Event Marketing Project Leader of Mercedes-Benz Canada. These new cars have more computing power than the space shuttle. Distronic Plus with steering assist was demonstrated, clearly demonstrating the added value of the new technology including the Baumester sound systems,360 degree cameras and radar that looks out to 500 meters to identify risks to the driver as well as Pre-Safe brakes with pedestrian recognition. The Independent Driving Program ADP is already in use in these new cars. We even learned why sub woofers are now in the firewall and not in the doors to provide extra airspace to make them more effective.
The apple and blue berry strudel as well as the pretzels were delivered and the writer admits to eating six of them, plus taking two of them home
Some new members were present as well as many familiar faces that have enjoyed the previous events, including members from the Mercedes-Benz Club of Canada. Harald von Langsdorff, presented the next upcoming year event which is a BBQ at AZIZ body shop in Oshawa when Harald picks up his new refurbished 6.3 sedan. This meeting provided the new members not only to ask questions about the new technology but also to ask existing members about their recent classic car purchases and share information.
Doug Dees reminded everyone about the MBCA draw for a Mercedes-Benz Airstream motor home and $20,000 US cash as the Grand prize. Information is available on the mbca.org website. An update on the history of the ownership of Justin Trudeau’s 300SL roadster was also presented.
George Morita one of the founding members of the Toronto Section 26 years ago was presented with a British Automobile Club grill badge from the 1940’s for his 1949 Bentley sedan .
The warm spring sunshine kept some of the members outside during the break to look at the latest acquisitions of their fellow members and to share stories.
The draws for a a Mercedes-Benz back pack, golf umbrella between presentations resulted in smiling faces and those that didn’t win a grand prize of a back pack received a complimentary Mercedes-Benz key chain that also can hold quarters or can be used as a golf ball marker.
Many thanks to Arden and Mercedes-Benz Canada for their hospitality in hosting this event.
We are invited by MBCC to their Spring Wine Tour. We would like to join as a group and enjoy the region for a tour on Saturday June 4th for a visit to Mercedes Benz Dealer in St Catherines followed by a visit to Chateau des Charmes Winery.
Following the MBCC invitation:
We look forward to a strong turnout for what has become the ever popular annual Niagara Wine tour. As noted above we will be visiting Chateau des Charmes Winery.
Our day will begin with a tour of the Mercedes Benz St-Catherines dealership who has opened their doors to our group. They are located at 371 Ontario Street, St-Catherines. From the QEW take the Ontario St. exit and turn right and follow to dealership which will be located on your right.
We are to meet there at 11 AM, get reacquainted and tour their facility while enjoying a coffee or tea. We will leave MB St-Catherines shortly after noon and make our way to the Jordan House Tavern, located nearby at 3845 Main St. in Jordan Station for some lunch or an early afternoon snack.
Following lunch you are free to explore the immediate surroundings but remember our tour at Chateau des Charmes starts at 4 PM sharp! The tour will be guided by winery personnel and features an educational tasting of 4 VQA wines including their renowned Icewine. Cost for the tour is $12 per person payable to the club. Exact change will be appreciated.
This is an RSVP event, your response is required by Monday May 30th latest to reserve your spot. Please reply to Yves Gosselin at 519-938-9103 or via email to email@example.com
After a beautiful scenic country drive to Creemore, we arrived early but not early enough for Parking in key locations on main st. The day was very hot and sunny, there were many activities for families from Horse wagon rides, Creemore Springs Brewery , visiting the old Heritage home and small Jail , all free incl. Beer Samplers of course must be of age. Roads in and around Creemore are closed to traffic so you can take a leisurely walk without any worries from vehicle traffic. There are also many locations to eat or seek shelter from the heat, hope the weather will be the same this year. Judging categories, Best Family Car , Best 3 Wheels or less, Organizers Choice, Brewmaster’s Choice, Peoples Choice & Best of the Best, trophies are all custom hand crafted.
The best were the beautiful cars located in scenic historic settings of Creemore.
Just another note that Creemore Springs Brewery uses German Hops from Bamberg and Yeast using the European Brewing Tradition .
What a beautiful drive.
The event organizers told us if 5 or more cars from a club register we get parking adjacent to each other.
We are planning a somewhat different event.
Recently, our Section President Harald von Langsdorff had his favorite drive, a 1968 300 SEL 6.3 repainted. You may recall the write-ups in our STARlite newsletter. After months of anticipation, the car is now ready for pick-up at the shop of Section Member Sheik’s A2Z Automotive shop in Oshawa.
We thought this would be a great opportunity for a get together.
With Sheik’s help, we plan a TechSessionLite at the premise of A2Z to see firsthand the shop’s features and activities. They not only restore classic but are a full service shop.
Sheik has also organized some informal BBQ and refreshments for us.
We’d also like to invite our fellow MB enthusiast from the MBCC.
Date: May 16, 2016
Time: 5:00 – 7:30 PM
Part 2 – Getting Started
It’s been just around three months now that I dropped of my 300SEL 6.3 for repainting. Since then, I visited Sheik at A2Z a couple of times to check on the progress.
Each time, I was accompanied by one or more of my fellow MBCA members Doug, John and Marcus.
When you start a project like this, you have to ask yourself some important questions upfront:
How thorough do you want the paint job to be? What about the engine compartment? Did you want to go into the extend to remove it for a full engine bay repaint? Same with the trunk. Does it need repainting? What if you detect further problems on the car? Can things get damaged while being removed/handled?
For example, if the front &rear winds come out (they should in a proper paint job), anticipate that they may not come out easily. The glass, together with the rubber seals easily gets damaged even when extremely careful. Obviously, now would be the time to replace any other damaged items. So find out if replacement parts are readily available. How much would they cost in case needed?
Rubber doors seals. Should you replace them? Are they available? Were these costs taken into consideration? Did you provide the paint shop with instructions and/or replacement parts?
Do you want a Euro version or a US version? Meaning, do you want to have the side markers, signal lights, headlights etc. modified? In the 60s, Mercedes-Benz cars were often delivered in Germany to US customers but in a Euro version, driven overseas for some time, exported to the US and only then modified to US specs. What version do you want the car to represent? Do your homework and have all parts available to finish one or the other version. How much are you prepared to have your budget increase by some late change of heart?
Keep these all in your mind when you boldly go ahead.
Taking the car apart
It is mandatory you and the paint shop discuss the extent the car is supposed to be dismantled to get painted. Ideal – from the painter’s point of view- is to have the whole car in pieces. This way, painting will be fast and thorough. BUT unless you have a car worth a 6-digit number, this may be cost prohibitive.
In my case, we decided to take the hood, trunk lid front fenders off. All of these parts, the rear fenders, doors and roof were then sanded and primed. With the car apart, now is the best time to address any visual and looming mechanical deficiencies.
Note: One option to proceed is to dismantle the car yourself. The reasons are a) to save money, b) avoid damage by an inexperienced paint shop. In my case a) was debatable, as transporting a dismantled car would have its own cost and challenges and b) was not of concern – see Part 1.
After the dismantling, some small rust dots were discovered on the rear wheel arches and repaired. Contrary to an earlier plan, the 4 doors were not removed for painting. This was an executive decision by Sheik as he felt there is not much to gain painting wise, as the arches and the pillars could be accessed easily with the doors left in place. On the other side, removing and resetting door poses a certain alignment risk.
As mentioned earlier, even before starting a paint job you should give some thought and discuss of all things that potentially need to be addressed/fixed. Including anticipated problems along the way such as sourcing rare parts. For years, I had collected a by now fairly large stack of spare parts for my 6.3 and set aside to be replaced/installed during just this occasion. I had brought them along in some large boxes when we stated. For example, I had what I thought a full set of rubber door seals. Unfortunately, one rubber door seal was missing. I forgot, that I had never acquired one. The large windshield rubber that I had saved turned out to be for the rear window not the front as I had thought.
My research discovered that the car spent the first year in Euro trim before being converted to US spec. That conversion was done fairly crudely by cutting openings into the side of the fenders to install the side markers. I now switched the car from US specs back to Euro Specs and the side markers were shaved. I also deleted the bullet style front signal lights. All indicating is now from within the front light housing.
BTW, Even the Euro model of the 300SEL 6.3 always had the double headlight, not the single light design of the basic W108 model.
Here some more pictures from the two visits.
What Library, you may ask? Yes, we have one. At least now that George Morita’s has been kind enough to donate his entire collection of 30 years of THE STAR magazine. That’s about 120 magazines in three boxes.
Here is George on the very left at one of our Tours.
George is a founding member of the Toronto Section and he and his lovely wife Marilyn are still actively participants at our events. Thank-you George.
BTW, any other old (or new) books & magazines are welcome. I will gladly add them to The Library.
I am also interested in archiving and documenting my inventory of Mercedes-Benz and automotive related books. If anybody is interested, I could use some help.
You won’t need a library card to visit, brows or borrow any magazines or book. Just contact Harald – the librarian.
Has elegance left modern car design? Are there no longer any cars being made which exude grace and class? Some may point to the raucous Jaguar F-Type or a svelte Aston Martin, but those designs are far too littered with scoops, “flame surfacing” and spoilers to be considered the essence of elegance.
Take for example John Geist’s pristine 1966 Mercedes-Benz 230SL. You won’t find blacked out trim or imitation brake cooling ducts anywhere on its stately sheet metal. It’s a purposeful, yet beautiful, design that looks formal and expensive without looking frumpy or overly ostentatious. Compared to American offerings of 1966 on which chrome was apparently slathered on with a trowel, the SL uses delicate ribbons of chrome to highlight the edges of its shape in the same way that a diamond necklace complements a dress.
The 230SL was designed as a bridge between the racy but extravagantly expensive 300SL “gullwing,” and the pretty but under-powered 190SL. Compared to the racer-for-the-street that the 300SL was, the 230SL was a more genteel car. It had all the sports car ingredients including a multi-point fuel-injected straight-six engine, two seats, four-wheel independent suspension and a removable top. But these components were wrapped in what remains one of the most graceful bodies to date. Like scotch in a fine tumbler, it just looks right.
Like many, Geist was initially attracted to the 230SL for its graceful shape, but he likes to enjoy it for more than just wall art. An active member of the Mercedes-Benz Club of America, Toronto Section, he loves driving his SL to shows and club events.
But the SL’s signature design touch is its “pagoda” roof. Mercedes engineers designed the removable hardtop (which is surprisingly heavy) with a unique concave curve in it; most roofs are convex when viewed from the front or rear. One of the reasons they did this was to add rigidity to the structure so that it could protect the occupants during a rollover crash; the other reason was that the upturned roof edges allowed for taller windows and better visibility, giving the car a very light and almost delicate appearance.
The 230SL’s design was well ahead of its time and the driving experience is shockingly modern. Multi-point fuel injection means that it starts and idles just like a new car – none of the usual carbureted recalcitrance when starting one of these. It rides smoother than the 1965 Sunbeam Tiger we recently featured and it’s only slightly less quiet at highway speeds than the superb Citroen SM.
But all that calm is shattered when Geist prompts the four-speed automatic to dip into low gear and accelerate hard. The sound doesn’t seem to come from one point; it surrounds you. You hear the whine of the double-row cam chain, the rush of air being swallowed through the intake runners and the surprisingly racy rasp of the exhaust. It’s a cornucopia of pleasant sounds.
Those looking to buy one of these graceful convertibles would do well to buy a sorted one. Unlike most cars that have bolted on fenders and body panels, the SL is comprised entirely of spot welded panels to increase rigidity and reduce rattles. Unfortunately, this means that rust and dent repair can be very costly and labour-intensive ordeals. The first step to repairing the front fenders on an SL is to cry in the fetal position. It won’t be cheap.
The SL was not an inexpensive car when it was new. Its $7,000 price tag was on par with Porsches and Maseratis of the period. Today, values remain high and a perfectly restored car can fetch easily $100,000+.
For those wanting the graceful looks of an early SL for a slice of the money, an option exists in the form of the “R107” generation SL. Made from 1971 to 1989, the third-generation SL is an affordable way to enter classic Mercedes ownership. These were made with I6 or V8 engines and their long production run means they’re fairly easy to find for sale.
One ride in Geist’s 230SL explains exactly why these cars are so valuable. It’s a classic that actually feels modern. It’s one of the few cars from the 1960s that can be driven like a new car. Understandably, Geist plans to drive it as often as he can, for as long as he can.
M-B Canada will update us in detail about the latest developments in Mercedes-Benz Technology and Safety.
Date: April 23, 2016
Time: 9:00 – 12:00
Location: Mercedes-Benz Logistic Centre and Training Academy 7380 Bren Road, Unit 2 Mississauga, Ontario L4T 1H4
- Welcome and Introductions
- Technical Presentations
- Break with Complimentary Coffee, Pretzels & Strudel
- Video Presentations
OK, so I decide to give my Mercedes-Benz 300SEL 6.3 a new coat of paint.
I had acquired this car almost 10 years ago – from all the available sources – on Ebay. Read more about the 300SEL 6.3 here
After extensive communication with the owner, I won the car for a reasonable price. Unseen and untested. However, the communications with the previous owner indicated that he had already invested a large sum in a very comprehensive mechanical restoration by a reputable brand specialist and had all the receipts. It even included refurbishing of the complete interior with new and correct leather upholstery and wood. I later learned that other bidders were confused with some mismatched interior details and wrote the car off as an unidentified object.
Next, I had the car shipped to Starmotors in Endicott, NY, a shop specializing in Mercedes models powered by the famed M100 engine. Until this point, my intend was to turn it into a tribute car of the Rote Sau (red pig) and use it extensively in Classic Car Rallies. Read more about the Red Pig here
After the car arrived at Starmotors, Neil the owner, called me. He hinted to not convert it after all. Mainly because it was just in too nice of a condition. He also confirmed this car to be #0038 and one of, if not the, first such model in the US. Which makes it quite valuable. The only weak spot was the fading paint but that could be addressed at some point in the future. We concurred te leave the car as is and after a brief tune-up and some minor maintenance of the air suspension it would make a very good driver with almost show quality interior and mechanics.
So this what I did for the past years. Drive it and appreciate the power and comfort that only the 6.3 can provide. For a second opinion, just hop over to Jay Leno’s video report on his 6.3. I also participated in some Classic Car Rallies and enjoyed embarrassing some motorists at stoplights and the 407, who thought that this is just another lazy, old Benz Diesel.
“New paint at some point in the future…”. Well the future is now and here is where this story actually begins. (BTW, this will be a multi part story over the course of this year. Hopefully with a very happy ending).
Part 1 – Finding a right Paint Shop
Finding a good paint shop is like finding a needle in the haystack. Actually, more like finding a golden needle between many needles. Obviously, the key is to find a good balance between cost and quality. However, quality is hard to judge before the paint has dried. Therefore, a lot of trust is involved.
I think I did my due diligence. I visited a number of paint shops, compared their work ethics and prices, spoke to friends who had similar work done in the past and traveled the internet.
My final candidates where the before mentioned M100 specialist Starmotors and our own Section member A2Z Automobiles in Whitby. The recent drop of our $CDN compared to the $US combined with the travel distance (I wanted to see the progress regularly) eventually favored the second. In addition, numerous conversations with Sheik, the owner of A2Z, made me feel at ease. My decision was also assisted by the fact that he was just in the midst of repainting a 220S Fintail, so I saw firsthand the attention to detail that he and his crew put into their work.
I dropped the car off just before Christmas.
One of Sheik’s jobs will be to document the work as it progresses so I can have pictures for my write-up.
Here are the first pictures.
On November 21st the Toronto Section held its annual Year End Dinner Party at the Royal Ambassador Banquet Halls in Caledon.
33 members including a special visit from the MBCA North East Regional Director Ernie Fancy and his wife Bonnie attended the event. Ernie’s visit was not only to update the membership on the National events such as StarFest 2016 which is being held in Uncasville Connecticut, August 3-6th 2016, but also to award Section President Harald von Langsdorff the MBCA Officer of the Year award.
This award is only given to one officer in a Region who in the opinion of the directors of the section and the Regional Director has displayed exemplary leadership during 2015. Gillian von Langsdorff was also honored with a bouquet of red roses for her contributions over the years as a gift donor of fine jewelry, sponsor, her role as a hostess for the events held at the von Langsdorff home and for just being the “Great wife” beside Harald. Harald was also given some original Mercedes-Benz marked 18 carat gold trimmed soup bowls and coffee accessories from the former executive dining room at the Mercedes-Benz Museum in Stuttgart for his leadership role in the Toronto Section.
Before the dinner started, a silent auction was held for the gifts donated by Mercedes-Benz Canada, their dealers and other sponsors and suppliers. We like to thank The AutoVault, Chudleigh’s, Euromotion Garage, Castaño-Kunst Dolls, JRPerformance, Exclusive Jewelry, M-B Dundas, Mississauga, Queensway and Brampton for their support not only for this evening but through the year. A draw was also held for the door prizes and all members were able to choose an item of their choice. Doug Dees asked the members to support the sponsors who have been supporting the club.
During the preceding AGM, participating members had discussed the 2015 and 2016 activities and Harald now informed all attendees of the Dinner Party of the planned events. A slide show entertained with various photos and videos of the 2015 events such TechSession, Stars of the Autobahn at Chudleigh’s and the Caledon Fall Tour & BBQ as well as a video of John Geist’s 230SL, professional shot by the National Post’s website.
It was a great evening to cap a full year of activity for our membership.
Blue skies, warm weather and full fall colors greeted the over 50 section members and prospects for the first Fall TechSession, Tour & Country BBQ.
The event started at the new Silver Star in Brampton, just outside of Toronto. This dealership, part of the Eltes Group is the newest and one of the largest in the Toronto area to service the growing population in the northwestern part of the GTA.
Through the co-operation and enthusiasm of Ian Cass and Stephen Wilke, Sales Consultants, the dealership held a technical briefing that provided a behind the scenes look of this new location that handles anything from tiny Smart cars to large Sprinter vans. Of special interest was the presentation by Patrick Fletch, Service Director on the work involved to get a used Mercedes-Benz Star Certified as well as the steps necessary in prepping a new car before delivery to the customer. He also had some noteworthy servicing tips to keep your used car in top condition. Of particular relevance to some members was the ability of the technicians to service some of the older classics. As non-members were able to attend the event it gave seasoned Section members the opportunity to outline the benefits of joining the MBCA through the MEL program that encourages new membership through a 6 month sponsored trial offer.
When the TechSession finished, M-B Brampton provided a wonderful catered lunch of gourmet sandwiches before the participants commenced the Fall Tour. First intended as a group outing, due to the large number of cars, the organizers converted to a self-guided tour. Following the detailed route description provided, 30 cars zig-zagged their way through the scenic Caledon Hills to enjoy the fall colors and foliage. It was a perfect day for a leisurely drive along country roads flanked by red and golden maple trees or just sitting by the clear waters of the Credit River in the warm sun. Some members with local knowledge also found time to revisit their favorite spots for many photo opportunities.
After about two hours the tour ended and at 3 o’clock it was the time to gather at the rural home of Gillian & Harald von Langsdorff, Toronto Section President. Here, the BBQ crew was already busy preparing the steak, chicken, hamburgers, hot dogs and great salads; something for everyone.
People were able to mingle and to view & discuss the cars that attended ranging from a new AMG sedans, coupes and convertible including a SLS Gullwing to a variety of various coupes, sedans and Pagodas of the 1960’s.
Afterwards, we had deserts and coffee. There were enough packaged so all participant were able to take home some sweet treats for the coming Thanksgiving weekend.
The event finished with a prize draw just when the sun was ready to set. Doug Rowan, the recent grand prize winner of the last MBCA Spring raffle struck gold again by winning the Mercedes-Benz jacket followed by Amanda Geist and Richard Calingasan for a Mercedes-Benz sweater. The prizes were donated by M-B Brampton.
Many thanks for the generosity of Silver Star M-B Brampton and its staff, all the help from Doug, Peter, John, Paul and the von Langsdorff’s Harald, Gill & Tanisha for their hard work in making this a very special launch event into the Canadian Thanksgiving weekend.
[ Remember to click on the image for enlarged view and slideshow features! ]
2015 Spring Rafe
How often do you get the chance to award such a fabulous prize like a 2016 Mercedes AMG GT S?
The Toronto Section had the great privilege to announce the 2015 Grand Prize Raffle winner, our own section member Doug Rowan.
One can only imagine what it would feel like to receive a call like this, unless of course you’re Doug.
Doug is a long time section member and enjoys driving his daily Diesel. We just recently met to discuss his plans to purchase a new E-250 BlueTEC.
We look forward seeing him at one of our upcoming events.