On February 18th, Mercedes-Benz Canada hosted a private tour for Toronto Section MBCA members of their pavilion at the Toronto International Autoshow. Arden Nerling of Mercedes-Benz Canada walked the members through the new models including the new GLA, S-Class, C-Class and designer Smart Car displays. The new GLA SUV while related to the B-Class platform is really a distinct vehicle and will be available for sale in the fall, while the new S-Class and C-Class models are available now.
We also received insights into the new Mercedes-Benz branding design language including colour arrangement for the models on display and the positioning of the logo and name. It is obvious that a lot of planning and thought went into the Mercedes-Benz Pavilion located in the North Building for 2014.
After we visited the M-B exhibit members made their way to the South Building. Here the S-Class drive simulator was waiting for us. This high-tech unit consist of a real new S-Class car with seating for 5 and allows a 180 degree view on six screens in front of the car and 11 simulation channels including motion simulation. The system needs a network of 12 powerful computers to run.
“You can experience all the safety functions in a safe simulator experience and get first-hand experience,” Andreas Gottschol, an engineer with Mercedes-Benz in its Active Safety department explained as he described the driving simulator. “It shows off all the safety functions in the S-class (as well as the E- and C-class) vehicles.”
Members had the opportunity for a hand-on confront of some of the revolutionary safety features available. Various scenarios were presented to the driver including night time, high speed German autobahn and city driving. All pose numerous driving challenges and demonstrated the innovative solutions offered by Mercedes-Benz. The simulation was so real that during an impending collision even the seat belt pre-tensioners actually tightened up –for the rear passengers.
Although some of the features are not (yet) available in North America due to legal issues, it marks a substantial move forward to assist drivers to be safe in our increasing crowded highways and cities while offering a relaxed and comfortable driving experience.
The evening ended with coffee and cake at the Mercedes-Benz V.I.P. only lounge overlooking the Autoshow.
We’d like to thank Arden Nerling and Mercedes-Benz Canada again for hosting this informative and entertaining evening.
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