PUBLISHED : Saturday, 08 September, 2007, 12:00am
UPDATED : Saturday, 08 September, 2007, 12:00am

Driven round the Benz

You can see two historic AMGs at the Mercedes-Benz Performance Studio, at 60 Repulse Bay Road, until mid-October, says marque spokesman Henry Lau.

There's a 2003 AMG Mercedes CLK DTM that former Formula One racer Jean Alesi drove to a championship-winning victory at Hockenheim. There's also the Mercedes-Benz SL 55 AMG Formula One safety car that had its debut in the 2001 German Grand Prix on the same track. AMGs aren't F1 safety cars for nothing, Lau says.

'The safety car intervenes after an accident or in bad weather conditions in order to lead the field of Formula One cars in a safe and controlled way until the situation returns to normal,' he says. 'It has to drive ahead of the field at high speed because at too low a speed the Formula One cars would not get enough cooling air and their sensitive, hi-tech engines might overheat. At the same time, the tyres would cool down and loose adhesion. As a result, safety cars have to cope with being driven at speeds of up to 280km/h.'

The exhibits highlight the marque's 'commitment to quality, aesthetics and performance,' Lau says. 'The very first Mercedes model of 1901 demonstrated the technical pioneering role of Daimler-Motoren-Gesellschaft in motorsports, with the 35hp Mercedes being the first modern automobile no longer based on a carriage design. This innovation proved a major success and the car won world racing competitions.'

The Mercedes-Benz Performance Studio (tel: 2594 8128) has also dedicated areas for the Mercedes-Benz Guard special protection vehicles, a selected array of the brand's parts and accessories and its 'designo' individualisation programme for Mercedes-Benz cars.

Visit before December 31 and you could enter a lucky draw for a Mercedes-Benz Sport Quartz Chronograph (worth HK$2,590). 'Or better still, a chance to win a round-trip to Sweden to participate in the AMG Winter Sporting programme if you purchase any [of the stock of] Mercedes-Benz AMG at Zung Fu or Mercedes-Benz Performance Studio,' Lau says.

Lex sells

Eight Lexus GS300 models used to ferry jet-setting ministerial and aviation VIPs at this week's Asian Aerospace International Expo and Congress are selling 'at an exclusive, one-time-only price of HK$489,000, a reduction of HK$49,800 on the original retail price', says Crown Motors spokeswoman Yvonne Lee.

The Lexus GS300 sports sedan (on the right of the photo) is equipped with a three-litre V6 engine and six-speed automatic super-ECT with artificial intelligence and +/- mode, she says. 'Advanced interior features include the world's first electronic chromatic device optitron meter, a smart entry and start system, power adjustable and retractable electronic anti-glare door mirrors with heaters and a premium sound system,' Lee says.

As official sponsor for the event at AsiaWorld-Expo, Lexus also included four LS460 models, which are also for sale. The marque also displayed the new LS600hL (pictured on the left).