Mercedes has been in the automobile business for well over 100 years, so they know what they're doing. In 2010, Daimler-Benz spent a staggering $5.5 BILLION on Research & Development. This investment has yielded such hi-tech features as Magic Ride Control (which uses cameras to monitor road conditions, then it adjusts the suspension accordingly), and Active Body Control (ABC) that can actually detect a crosswind, then adjust individual shocks to compensate.
As a Mercedes owner, I can tell you that you buy one because you want the best-of-the-best. Mercedes makes Automobiles, not Cars. The attention to detail is staggering, and most Mercedes’ feel like they were hewn from a solid chunk of granite. You feel invincible, and proud when you’re driving one. Rolls Royce be damned, you’re driving the best automobile on the road.
That said, I do believe that Mercedes design chief Gorden Wagener has one helluva case of ADD. The current design language is so busy, you need to pop a few Ritalin just to take it all in. There’s creases on top of creases, odd angles, and gills where they shouldn’t be. And to top off the embarrassment, all models now wear a grill-mounted Mercedes star that’s bigger than Oprah was before she went to Fat Camp. With the exception of the 2012 C-350 Coupe / 2012 C63 AMG, modern Mercedes styling...takes some getting used to.
What Mercedes lacks in aesthetics, they more than make up for with cutting-edge innovations. Remember, this is the company that first introduced features like Crumple-Zones, Airbags, and ABS. So you can expect many of their current features to wind up as standard equipment on a Ford in 10 years.
Some of these amazements include; Collision avoidance systems like BAP. When you press the brake pedal, Brake Assist Plus (part of the DISTRONIC PLUS pkg) uses radar sensors to calculate the distance between you and the object that you’re about to hit, then it can apply (up to) maximum braking force, bringing you to a halt. The PRE-SAFE Brake system takes it one step further, by alerting you to an impending frontal collision with an audiovisual warning. If you don’t react quickly enough (say you’re busy texting your golf instructor), your Mercedes will intervene, applying full brake force to prevent the collision. But if you do manage to crash your Merc, it has cutting points in the A & C pillars which are clearly marked to aid EMS in cutting you out of the vehicle.
Besides the safety stuff, Mercedes also has a suite of luxury accoutrements that include; SPLITVIEW which is an 8-inch in-dash display that simultaneously shows the driver & front passenger different images. Allowing your passenger to watch a DVD, while you look for your exit on the nav screen. That trick display can also be used to display a remarkably useful infrared image of the road ahead, courtesy of the $1,700 Night View Assist Plus system.
2012 Mercedes Models
- Mercedes C-Class - Right-sized luxury. Perfect for doctors who’ve just finished their residency.
- Mercedes E-Class - Still the gold-standard of mid-sized luxury. Perfect if you’re medical practice is based in a strip mall.
- Mercedes S-Class - Imposing, luxurious, and powerful. In short, everything a luxury car should be. Perfect for the plastic surgeon wishing to celebrate their 1,000th tummy-tuck.
- Mercedes CL-Class - A soothing sledge hammer. Perfect for the plastic surgeon who has to travel between multiple offices.
- Mercedes CLS - Coupe-like styling, planet-like curb weight. Perfect for the newly divorced plastic surgeon.
- Mercedes SLK - No longer just a fashion accessory. This is the perfect car for strip mall doctor’s mid-life crisis.
- Mercedes SL - Amazing abilities, ADD styling. The Mrs. Dr. Barry Rabinowitz Special.
- Mercedes SLS AMG - Fast, furious, expensive. Perfect if you’ve just scheduled Joan Rivers for another face-lift.
- Mercedes GLK - Masculine styling, decent power. Perfect for the Rabinowitz child/daughter.
- Mercedes M-Class - Primadonna styling, some actual off-road abilities. Perfect soccer transporter for those living in a gated community.
- Mercedes R-Class - Mercedes’ answer to the minivan. Perfect for doctors living in Utah.
- Mercedes GL-Class - What the 2012 Cadillac Escalade wants to be, when it grows up.
- Mercedes G-Class / Gelandewagen - Military-Grade luxury. Perfect for the mob boss with a hunting lodge in Siberia.