This blog will expand on themes and topics first mentioned in my book, "The Automobile and American Life." I hope to comment on recent developments in the automobile industry, reviews of my readings on the history of the automobile, drafts of my new work, contributions from friends, descriptions of the museums and car shows I attend and anything else relevant to those interested in automobiles and auto history. Copyright 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015 , 2016, 2017, by the author.
Wednesday, June 28, 2017
Mercedes-Benz at the Arlberg Classic Car Rally, June 29-July 2, 2017
Mercedes-Benz 350 SLC (C 107), production period from 1972 to 1980.
Mercedes-Benz 280 SE 3.5 Cabriolet (W 111), production period from 1969 to 1971.
The Arlberg Classic Car Rally, which this year takes place between 29th June and 2nd July 2017, offers spectators fascinating cars against the impressive panorama of the Alps. The regularity rally for pre-1975 cars is characterised by the route through the alpine streets in the spectacular mountainous landscape and the large variety of car makes and models. This concept puts the rally at the highest level for classic cars - consistent with Arlberg, Zugspitze and other prominent alpine summits along the route.
The constant nurture of the cultural heritage of classic cars from young timers to pre-war classics is also embodied by ALL TIME STARS, the Mercedes-Benz Classic dealership. Two exclusive sporty ALL TIME STARS vehicles will take part in the 8th Arlberg Classic Car Rally for the Laureus Sport for Good charity. They are likely to be a 1971 Mercedes-Benz 280 SE 3.5 Cabriolet (W 111) and a 1974 350 SLC (C 107).
The classic cars will be driven by Countess Dr Towa-Christina of Bismark, Finance and Foundations expert, skiing legend Christa Kinshofer, Paralympic ski champion Markus Salcher and Paul Schif, Managing Director of Laureus Sport for Good Foundation Germany/Austria, .
ALL TIME STARS opened in 2015. The dealership's stock of Mercedes-Benz Classics ranges from pre-war classics through to young timers. Models from the 1960s and 1980s are particularly popular with customers. ALL TIME STARS ensures maximum transparency by thoroughly examining every vehicle based on 160 criteria, supplemented with a Classic Data assessment. The ALL TIME STARS are technically at least in condition 2, and are categorised into several editions.
Tyrolean Loop and Castle and Lakes Tour
The Arlberg Classic Car Rally begins on Thursday (29th June 2017) with the traditional prologue through the "Lech Canyon" following a section of road between Lech and Schoppernau which is closed to the public during the rally.This is followed on Friday (30th June 2017) by the "Tyrolean Loop". This route starts from Lech and climbs over the Hahntennjoch, through the Inn Valley and via the Fernpass. A highlight of the day is the view from the massif of the Zugspitze.
On Saturday (1st July 2017) there is the "Castle and Lakes" stage. Locations along this route include Oberammergau, the royal castles in Füssen and the Bregenz Forest. All in all the regularity rally programme includes around 600 km of road with 20 special stages. Only analogue watches can be used for timekeeping in the race where every second counts.
Also joining the starting line of the Arlberg Classic Car Rally 2017, in addition to the two ALL TIME STARS cars from Mercedes-Benz Classic, is a current Mercedes-AMG C 63 S Cabriolet (fuel consumption combined: 9.3-8.9 l/100 km, combined CO2 emissions: 218-208 g/km). For Mercedes-Benz, this marks the 50th anniversary of its sports and performance cars arm Mercedes-AMG. The exclusive high-performance car will be the pace car in the rally and will be driven by the Mercedes-Benz Brand Ambassador and racing driver Dieter Glemser. In addition, there will be many privately owned classics of the brand with the star on the starting blocks. Since its conception in 2010, the Arlberg Classic Car Rally has been won three times by teams driving Mercedes-Benz classics.
Arlberg Classic Car Rally 2017: the ALL TIME STARS vehicles
The vehicles put forward by ALL TIME STARS in the Arlberg Classic Car Rally 2017 may be subject to change at the last minute.
Mercedes-Benz 280 SE 3.5 Cabriolet (W 111), 1971
Even when still in production, the luxury "Tail fin" Cabriolets introduced in 1961 had a strong following with their timeless, classic appearance. This is why they remained in the Mercedes-Benz product range when most of the Saloons in the W111 series were replaced by a newly designed model generation in August 1965. With the exception of the missing roof and the necessary body reinforcements, the exclusive Cabriolets match the W 111 Coupés in every detail. In the same year the model 220 Sb was joined by the 300 SE Cabriolet with the additional trim and the technology of the model 300 SE (W 112). The 250 SE followed in 1965, the 280 SE in 1968. In September 1969 the 280 SE 3.5 Cabriolet made its appearance as a considerably more powerful version. It was powered by a newly developed 3.5-litre V8 engine delivering 147 kW (200 hp), which excelled with its smooth running characteristics. The ten-year production period of the "Tail fin" Cabriolets came to an end in summer 1971. During this time, Mercedes-Benz built a total of 7013 examples of the W111 and W112-series Cabriolets in Sindelfingen.
The 280 SE 3.5 Cabriolet from the Collectors Edition of the ALL TIME STARS, which Mercedes-Benz Classic is bringing to the Arlberg Classic Car Rally 2017, comes from a Mercedes-Benz collection. It was delivered in 1971 from the Mercedes-Benz agency in Munich and is painted in metallic blue with a leather interior.
Technical specifications of the Mercedes-Benz 280 SE 3.5 Cabriolet Production period: 1969-1971 Cylinders: V8 Engine capacity: 3499 cc Output: 147 kW (200 hp) at 5800 rpm Top speed: 205 km/h
Mercedes-Benz 350 SLC (C 107), 1974
The SLC Coupés from the C107 series continue the tradition of the S-Class Coupés from Mercedes-Benz. However, they do not have the chassis from the high-end saloons of the time, but rather from the SL sports cars of the R107 series. From these open-top vehicles, the engineers created a four-seater coupé that has a longer wheelbase extended by 360 mm to 2820 mm. The C 107 places emphasis on driving safety. This includes the collision-protected tank built over the rear axle, an extra cushioned dashboard, the new four-spoke steering wheel with impact absorber and wider bolster plate for the best possible impact protection. In addition to the numerous passive safety measures, there are special wind deflectors on the front pillar and profiled rear lights. Both improve vision and visibility. The type 350 SLC was initially introduced in 1971, coming onto the market in 1972. It was followed in the same year by the 450 SLC, then finally in 1974 by the 280 SLC with 2.8-litre injection engine. In 1977 Mercedes-Benz introduced the type 450 SLC 5.0 as the new top-of-the-line model in the C107 series. Contrary to the other SLC Coupés, this vehicle, that came on the market in 1978, did not have a counterpart in the open-top R107 series. In 1980, the SLC Coupés were updated together with the Roadsters; the 450 SLC 5.0 became the 500 SLC - with an engine capacity of 4939 cubic centimetres. At the same time, the new type 380 SLC with 3.8-litre light-alloy engine replaced the 350 SLC. In the ten-year production period some 62,888 examples of the C107-series Mercedes-Benz cars were manufactured.
The 350 SLC Coupé from ALL TIME STARS, that Mercedes-Benz Classic is using in the Arlberg Classic Car Rally 2017, was first registered in 1974. The vehicle has passed its MOT, is painted in metallic beige and has a green velour interior.
Technical specification of the Mercedes-Benz 350 SLC Production period: 1972 to 1980 Cylinders: V8 Engine capacity: 3499 cubic centimetres (3459 cubic centimetres according to the tax formula) Output: 147 kW (200 hp) at 5800 rpm Top speed: 210 km/h