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FEBRUARY 2013

‘ROUND THE BENZ Welcome new members! Martyn Cooper

Take your Sweetheart

Paul Howell 2007 SK550

Mary Lou Murphy 2012 ML350

Eric Wicke Kenneth & Ivanka Zimcosky Inside this issue: View From the Peak

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Mercedes News

2

5280 Dinner

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New Member Party

4

D-I-Y Tech Session

5

Sunday Brunch

5

Mile High Events

5

StarTech 2013

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Germany Trips

6

Der Marktplatz

7

Click

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Your Car Is the Star

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Fun Run Recap

8

Potluck Recap

8

Winter Driving Class 9

CLA Unveiled

Valentine’s Day Brunch

Saturday, 16 February 2013 9:30 a.m.

John & Denise Haven

Meet the Board

Newsletter of the PIKES PEAK SECTION

9 10

to brunch, or just hang out with the club! Which ever is your fancy, please join us for another trip through history in one of our newest hotels in downtown Colorado Springs! We will be visiting The Mining Exchange, a Wyndham Grand Hotel, at 8 S. Nevada Ave, on Saturday, February 16. Meet at 9:30 a.m. in the lobby for a tour of the hotel, and brunch at the Springs Orleans Restaurant. The Mining Exchange was built in 1902 by civic benefactor Winfield Scott Stratton who made his fortune in the Cripple Creek gold boom of the 1890s. Over the years, it has housed mining companies, insurance companies, brokers, investors, lawyers, insurance firms, architects, and oil companies. It now is a beautiful restored building that is the Wyndham Grand Hotel. Our tour will include a peek at the hotel

rooms, various vaults that were used during the time the Mining Exchange was in business, and various other historical rooms, such as the ballrooms. Brunch will be at the Springs Orleans restaurant connected to the hotel. We will order from the menu, and you can pick anything from Eggs Etouffee to fabulous French Toast–Bananas Foster, and don’t forget the Mimosas or Bloody Marys. Parking is available on the streets surrounding the hotel (Nevada and Pikes Peak) as well as in the city-owned parking garage one block south on Nevada. We are offering rooms at the hotel for Friday night, Feb 15, at a special rate of $119 per couple, for those who would like to make it a real romantic weekend. We have to have at least eight couples participate to get this price, so don’t wait! Let me know if you are interested! What a great way to celebrate Valentine’s Day with your Sweetie! For more information, contact Cheryl Kerbs at 800-878-2929x177, or 719-594-6017. RSVP for the brunch no later than Feb 13.

Electronic Newsletter We’re counting down to the beginning of our electronic-only newsletter. On 1 April, we will stop delivery of the hard copy newsletter to members with e-mail addresses. If you would like to continue receiving the hard copy newsletter, please notify us that you wish to receive the hard copy. In addition, please provide the MBCA NBO with your current e-mail address, via the MBCA website. If there are any questions, please contact Judy Bennett, 719-576-9737 or bennett912@comcast.net.


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Section Officers President: Andrew Nelson ottobahn2@gmail.com 719-464-7018 Vice President: Judy Bennett bennett912@comcast.net 719-576-9737 Secretary: Mary Bixler mebixler@comcast.net 719-597-1281 Treasurer: Julie Nelson ottobahn2@gmail.com 719-634-7522

Directors: Stan Bixler sebixler@comcast.net 719-597-1281 Gary Gagnon gary.gagnon@linquest.com 719-282-9313 Glenn Hamill ghamill@benzcoloradosprings.com 719-575-7931 Bill Kasper bkas1945@msn.com 719-495-9867 Dan Kerbs dankerbs00@yahoo.com 719-594-6017 Henry Russell kc0naj@gmail.com 719-599-5503 Dave Williamson dwilliamson@benzcoloradosprings.com 719-575-7976

Webmaster:

Robert Boren r_i_boren@hotmail.com

Editor:

Judy Bennett bennett912@comcast.net 719-576-9737

Regional Director:

Charlie Bennett charlesibennett@comcast. net 719-576-9737 ‘ROUND

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View From the Peak by Andrew Nelson

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lmost everyone has a car story of “the one that got away,” which includes the manifest regret of a car I “shoulda bought” or a past car you sold that you knew in your gut was the wrong decision. Mine was the first Mercedes-Benz I had the means and opportunity to buy - a 1959 220S sedan. In 1981, the car was offered by the original owner for $3000. She was literally a little old lady from Altadena, California. I was a 22-year old guy considering the purchase of a vehicle of the same age. The car was in all original, almost perfect condition. The 2.2L in-line six ran like a fine sewing machine. The 4-speed slender handle column shift snicksnacked seamlessly. The interior showed its more than a score of years worth of wear but there was nary a crack in the dash wood nor a tear in the cloth seats. It would cruise smoothly and effortlessly the endless LA freeways at 25 mph over

the double-nickel speed limit. Why didn’t I buy that car??? My much younger alterego didn’t think that car was cool enough. So I bought instead a brand new 1982 VW Scirocco. It is still the only new car I have ever purchased. I had some fun with it but due to its size, I almost had to fold and unfold myself to get in and out of it. One could also tell right away that even though they were both of teutonic origins, a VW was not a M-B. My advice is if you have that gut feeling about a car, BUY IT or keep it (or don’t). Whatever choice you make, you have the origin and legend of a fine car story. Here’s some more advice. We’ve got a Valentine’s Day brunch on the 16th good food and interesting history at the downtown Mining Exchange. Then more fine dining with the 5280 dinners on the 23rd and 1-2 March. The price is not to be believed, and the camaraderie is unparalleled. Join us! As always, drive safe, and I will see you down the road.

Andrew

Mercedes News

Mercedes plans to launch a new com-

pact crossover called the GLA, based on its ‘MFA’ small car platform. The GLA is expected to be a bit more sporting in appearance than the average crossover, although engines are likely to be pulled from current A- and

B-class offerings. So, expect the GLA to look fast but not go so fast (unless, of course, you opt for the planned AMG version). Here’s a new spy shot of the baby crossover, expected to go on sale towards the end of the year as a 2014 model.

‘Round the BENZ is published monthly by the Pikes Peak Section of the Mercedes-Benz Club of America (MBCA), Inc. Articles and ideas are the opinions of the writers and no authentication is implied as to the validity of any information contained therein. Explicit permission to republish any article with proper attribution is given to all sections of MBCA, Inc. Articles for publication consideration should be mailed to Pikes Peak Section, MBCA, Attn: Editor, 4335 Penhurst Place, Colorado Springs, CO 80906 or, whenever possible, emailed to: bennett912@comcast.net. Deadline for receipt is the 18th of the month prior to the month of issue.

Pikes Peak Section members are encouraged to support the advertisers in our newsletter. They help to make this publication possible.


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- 5280

Dinner

Saturday, 23 February; Friday, 1 May; and Saturday, 2 May

It’s time to choose, Pikes Peak Sec-

tion. Denver Restaurant Week aka 5280 Week, is almost upon us. During 5280 Week 2013 (23 Feb-8 Mar), we will enjoy a multi-course meal for the “mile-high” price of $52.80 for two or $26.40 for one (not including tax and tip). Because most of the participating restaurants do not accept large groups during this event, we have made reservations for 10-12 folks at three different restaurants on three different days.

The Old Stone Church On Saturday, 23 Feb, we will be going to The Old Stone Church in Castle Rock at 7:00 p.m. The church has stood since 1888. In 1975 it was remodeled to become a restaurant. Today it’s a warm, inviting refuge from the everyday, with inspired American cuisine to share with family and friends. The Old Stone Church menu for 5280 includes: First Course: Crispy & sweet calamari; carnita tostada; or Stone Church salad with gorgonzola. Second course: Java salmon with coffee ancho rub and chipotle goat cheese orzo; Kobe top sirloin with blue crab mac ‘n’ cheese; seared sea scallops with lobster ravioli; grilled Colorado lamb t-bone with smoked chorizo fingerlings; or Commander’s pasta with Cajun andouille sausage. Third course: Tres leches sponge cake with whipped cream and berry coulis or homemade ice cream and sorbet with almond brittle.

McCormick & Schmick’s On Friday, 1 May, we have reservations at 7:15 p.m. at McCormick & Schmick’s Steaks & Seafood in the Denver Tech Center. Established in the 1970s, McCormick & Schmick’s is uniquely designed

to create an inviting, original and relaxed atmosphere, where guests can enjoy the highest quality dining experience. McCormick & Schmick’s menu for 5280 includes: First Course: Walnut mixed greens with blue cheese crumbles or clam chowder. Second course: Stuffed Atlantic salmon with crab, shrimp, and brie cheese; parmesan crusted chicken with linguini alfredo; beef medallions and steamed lobster; or beef medallions with bordelaise sauce and roasted mushrooms. Third course: Chocolate cup with berries or New York cheesecake.

Gabriel’s Restaurant & Tuscan Bar Gabriel’s is a Zagat-award winning fine dining Northern Italian restaurant. Located in the historical Manhart Manor, constructed in 1889, this Victorian home was transformed in 1983 into an elegant dining establishment. We will be driving to Sedalia on Saturday, 2 May for our 7:30 p.m. reservation.

“What a wealth of choices fellow MBCA members. This

Gabriel’s 5280 menu includes:

one is first-

First Course: Sausage and mozzarella ravioli.

come, first-

Second course: Soup du jour or mixed greens salad.

serve..”

Third course: Pan-seared salmon with coconut-saffron cream and black rice; petite filet mignon with marsala wine sauce and prawns with gorgonzola cream sauce; rosemary pouisson with sausage dressing; eggplant ratatouille with red and black quinoa; and lamb osso bucco served over creamy polenta. What a wealth of choices fellow MBCA members! This one is first-come, firstserve. Contact Judy Bennett ASAP and let her know your choice; 719-576-9737 or bennett912@comcast.net ‘ROUND

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New Member Party

Let’s get together on Saturday, March

- 16 March 2013

16 and greet the Pikes Peak Section members who joined us in 2012. The New Member Party will again be held at Mimi’s Cafe on North Academy, because they do a very special job for us.

“The price per person is $23.25, which includes the meal, drinks, tax and gratuity.”

Mimi’s appeals to many and we are excited about returning for our annual event. The New Member Party gives us an opportunity to share a meal and our Mercedes-Benz Club experiences with new members. Our board is an especially enthusiastic group and we want to encourage your participation in our fun and varied activities. A three-course menu consisting of soup or salad, a choice among six entrees and dessert, soda, tea, or coffee is being prepared especially for us. Among the entrees are two new selections, “Filet of Soul,” a light fish entry and a new seasonal highlight, Salmon Florentine.

The price per person is $23.25, which includes the meal, drinks, tax and gratuity. Alcoholic drinks are available for an additional cost. As our gift to the new 2012 members, their meal is complimentary. Join us for the social hour at 5:30 p.m. when wait staff will be available for drink orders. Dinner will follow at 6:30 p.m. March 16 will be here before we know it. We had 34 new members in 2012 and space is limited, so please get your reservations in as soon as possible. We look forward to sharing the evening with our new and current members. See you at Mimi’s on North Academy on Saturday, March 16 at 5:30 p.m. And remember - the new member gets his or her meal free! For more information, contact Mary Bixler at 719-597-1281 or at mebixler@comcast. net

Member Name ____________________________________________________________ Guest Name ______________________________________________________________ _______ Dinners at $23.25 = $__________

NEW MEMBER’S MEAL IS FREE

Contact information: Phone __________________________________ Email __________________________________ Make check payable to “MBCA Pikes Peak Section” and mail to Mary Bixler, 3650 Hayman Ct., Colorado Springs 80910 ‘ROUND

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PREVIEW OF COMING ATTRACTIONS! D-I-Y Tech Session

- 14 April 2013 enjoy tinkering with their beautiful Benzes and saving some significant money in the process.

Dave Williamson has scheduled another Do-It-Yourself Tech Session at MercedesBenz of Colorado Springs. It will be held on Sunday, 14 April at 10:00 a.m. This is becoming a very popular event as our members have discovered that they

Sunday Brunch

As usual, Dave, Andy, and Tim will be on hand to walk us through whatever repair or procedure we choose. Replacing brake pads? Changing oil? It’s all much easier with access to the lifts and equipment at Mercedes-Benz of Colorado Springs. The parts department will be open and extend the usual 20 percent discount to Pikes Peak Section members.

“...they enjoy tinkering with their beautiful Benzes....”

Put this date on your calendar, folks; you and your Mercedes-Benz will be glad you did.

- 21 April 2013

he Pikes Peak Section will gather at the Cheyenne Mountain Resort for their sumptuous Sunday Brunch. We’ll have an area reserved for the section in the dining area. If you’ve not had an opportunity to experience the resort’s brunch you are in for a treat.

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The Sunday Brunch is fit for the most discerning palate and biggest appetite, combined with the best view in Colorado Springs. You’ll enjoy waffles and omelets on the hearth made to order from their chefs. The cheese and salad bar is filled

with delectable flavors from around the world. Several main dishes such as eggs benedict, crepes and much more are included, as well as a very well-rounded dessert bar with their special recipe vanilla ice cream.

“...fit for the most discerning

After brunch, a trip to the Cheyenne Mountain Zoo, weather permitting, will be organized as an ad-hoc event so we can walk off the great meal.

palate and biggest

RSVP to Gary Gagnon not later than 14 April 2013, (719) 332-7501, gagnong4@ msn.com. Attendees should plan on meeting at the Cheyenne Mountain Resort at 11:00 a.m. Currently, the cost per person for the Brunch is $30 person, taxes and gratuity not included.

appetite....”

Mile High Section Events

For more information, visit the MHS website at http: www.milehighmbca.org

MHS Valentine’s Party Date: 8 Feb 2013; 6:00 p.m. Location: Mount Vernon Country Club, 24933 Clubhouse Circle, Golden Contact: Jay Hokanson at 303-935-8270 or jhokanso@comcast.net

Anschutz Medical Campus Tour Date: 6 April 2013; 10:00 a.m. Location: Anschutz Medical Center, Aurora Cost: $5 plus cost of lunch at Islamorada Contact: Michael Davidson at mhd1654@ gmail.com ‘ROUND

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Page 6 MBUSI Welcome Center

Title TBD

Barber Motorsports Park

Aldridge Gardens

U.S Space & Rocket Center

Come for the Tech! ® Come for the Fun!

StarTech 2013 • Factory Tours of Mercedes-Benz U.S. International (MBUSI) • MBUSA and MBUSI Speakers • Touring Laps – Barber Motorsports Road Course • Technical Seminars

• • • • •

Birmingham, Alabama Maintenance May –18-22, 2013– Modification – –

Repairs Restoration

Vintage Races at Barber Motorsports U.S. Space & Rocket Center and NASA Tour Shopping Garden & Museum Tours Something for everyone...

Manufacturing

For information and registration package contact Liz Roberson at lizroberson2013@gmail.com | 205.822.8460 Mercedes-Benz Club of America | Alabama Section www.StarTech2013.org

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Explore Germany Two Ways With MBCA!

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ince 2006, hundreds of MBCA members have s a special bonus in 2013, the National Business enjoyed personally-guided tours of Stuttgart, GerOffice has partnered with Frosch Travel to offer many through their membership with MBCA. These MBCA Members a second unique tour of Germany. adventure-packed excursions This tour is open to all MBCA MBUSI Welcome Center Title TBD Barber Motorsports Park Aldridge Gardens U.S Space & Rocket Center — organized and chaperoned members and participation in our by past National President, Jim annual tour (described above) is O’Sullivan — are consistently not required; however, you might given two thumbs up for their delight in combining BOTH trips • Factory Tours of Mercedes-Benz • Vintage Races at Barber hospitality, unparalleled sightduring theMotorsports month of September. U.S. International (MBUSI) • U.S. Space & Rocket Center and NASA Tour seeing destinations and overall Members will travel from Ba• MBUSA and MBUSI Speakers • Shopping value. sel, Switzerland to Amsterdam, • Touring Laps – Barber • Garden & Museum Tours Members revel in behind-theNetherlands from September Motorsports Road Course • Something for everyone... scenes tours of the Mercedes29-October 6, 2013 aboard the • Technical Seminars Benz Museum; the Stuttgart exquisite Viking River Cruises– Maintenance – Modification Brand Center; the Classic – Repairs Sun cruise ship. Explore four – Manufacturing Center; the Unterturkheim Test countries with six guided tours – Restoration Track; the Daimler Memorial, and visit some of the most amazand other spectacular venues. ing highlights along the breathBy popular demand, two tours taking Rhine River. ForTentainformation and registration package contact Liz Roberson are slated again for 2013. Special price discounts have tive dates are July 15-21, 2013 at lizroberson2013@gmail.com | 205.822.8460 been created exclusively for and again, September 23-29, MBCA members. Contact John 2013. Mercedes-Benz Club of America | AlabamaMartiss Sectionat Frosch Travel for www.StarTech2013.org Space is limited. Please coninformation and reservations at tact Jim O’ Sullivan at osullivanj55@gmail.com or 800-262-7447, ext. 114. You can also contact Randy 843.671.2079 for complete details. Norris at 800-262-7447, ext. 105 *Space is EXTREMELY limited. Please call ASAP. *******************************************************

Come for the Tech!

Come for the Fun!


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Der Marktplatz

Palmer 597-5241.

2000 SL-500 hardtop (black and perfect) with storage stand for $1,000. Plus I’m interested in purchasing a ‘04/’05 SL500, black-on-black or blackon-gray, the usual stuff perfect and low mileage for around $20,000 - $25,000. Rick

1981 300SD. Single owner, 80,760 miles. Excellent condition. $7500. Call Tom at 633-5185 Mercedes Benz 300 CD, 5-cylinder TURBO Diesel. Sun roof, dark blue/beige interior. New tires, hoses, belts and Bilstein shocks. Mercedes serviced with abundant mechanical records. Third owner, with 236,000 miles. It was displayed at concours/charity shows. Needs nothing. $5,300.00 obo. David Hester 303-933-7610

Your Car Is the Star!

This just in from the latest edition of the MBCA e-

newsletter, Click, a quick wrap-up of news, discounts & special events: Did You Know? If you have been a Member of MBCA for 12 consecutive months or longer, and are still a Member today, you’re entitled to receive $1,000 off the purchase or lease price of a NEW 2013 or 2014 Mercedes-Benz.* Before you buy, listen to the buying tips offered by Senior Consumer Advice Editor, Phil Reed, of Edmunds.com at: http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_ embedded&v=tOQLk4gQzNs#t=0s The $1,000 discount, known as the MBCA ‘Loyalty Reward,’ is available to U.S. Members only. Canadian Members are entitled to separate price discounts. Please visit http://www.mbca.org/member-benefits for certain restrictions and complete redemption instructions. Members, you must be logged in to the mbca. org website in order to access Loyalty Reward rules and instructions. Not sure how to log-in? Call the National Business Office at 800.637.2360 from 8am-5pm Monday-Friday for assistance. Please see our ad on page 78 of the January 2013 Star® magazine

Immortalize yourself and your Mercedes with a framed poster, created by the Pikes Peak Section. Send us a high quality photo of you and your car in jpg format. We will create a framed mock-up of the cover of the Star Magazine, featuring your photo with a suitable caption. Various sizes are available, costing up to $35. Contact Charlie Bennett at 719-576-9737 or charlesibennett@comcast.net for more information.

Refer A Friend Refer a friend to the Mercedes-Benz Club of America and get one additional month of Club membership FREE, for every friend who joins. The more friends who enroll, the more free months you automatically receive. There’s no limit to the number of free months you can earn. Call the NBO at 800.637.2360 or 719.633.6427 for more details. ‘ROUND

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Fun Run Recap

On Saturday, 19 Jan, the Pikes Peak “...we couldn’t resist the call of the mountains.”

Section reconvened our monthly breakfast at the Golden Corral on East Woodmen with an enthusiastic crowd. Breakfast was great as usual, and then we settled back to hear all the fun things in store for us as a Club over the next few months. President Andrew concluded with a history of actual assault weapons in honor of Gun Appreciation Day.

We piled into our cars and headed south to Hwy 24 enroute to Guffey, CO. With our fearless leader, President Steve Dierks in the lead, we flew around curves and caught some air while cresting hills. It was absolutely exhilarating. We ended our drive at the Bull Moose Saloon where we enjoyed a leisurely lunch.

On our way out of town we stopped to pay homage to a vintage Then we continued one Buick parked in a field. of our most important Why, you ask? Betraditions - the extemcause it was President Charlie & Steve Admire the Buick poraneous fun run. We Steve’s very first car. tossed around various ideas include difWhat a trip down memory lane. From there ferent routes or a visit to Serenity Springs. it was back home with a promise to ourIt was such a lovely day that we couldn’t selves to hit the road again soon. resist the call of the mountains.

Pot Luck Recap

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he Pikes Peak Section Annual Pot Luck at Mercedes-Benz of Colorado Springs was another resounding success. We had a great turnout of 58 members and guests, including MBCA President Steve Dierks, past President Pete Watson, and Rocky Mountain Regional Director Charlie Bennett. As usual we had a wonderful selection of dishes. There was The James’ New ML something for everyone on the serving line - salads, main dishes, and desserts. The Dierks’ ‘homemade’ Popeye’s fried chicken was a particular favorite go figure. Dave Williamson and Tim Mork were generous bartenders. President Andrew began the evening with a surprise Auctioneers Lance & Glenn toast to a new car delivery. Tom and Ursula James’ new 2013 ML350 was parked on the showroom floor, unbe‘ROUND

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knownst to them. We raised our glasses to welcome their new car and also acknowledged the Lesh’s new ML that had been delivered last month. We’re always happy to add to our Mercedes family. Then it was on to the main event - the food. Everyone filled plates with their choices and the noise level noticeably decreased as we all tucked in. Glenn Hamill and Lance Michaels got set up for our auction and got things rolling by hawking all things Mercedes. They had key chains, t-shirts,and model cars to raffle off. Then came a Mercedes shoe bag and the last ever Mercedes snow globe followed by an atomic Mercedes clock. The Matthiesens donated a beautiful Mercedes espresso set and Andrew Nelson donated an MBCA fanny pack. Finally, it was the grand finale a Mercedes picnic basket. That’s when the bidding reached a fever pitch, eventually reaching $109. The dealership generously donated the entire proceeds of the auction to the Pikes Peak Section. It was a lovely evening, a chance to catch up with old friends and new. Thank you Mercedes-Benz of Colorado Springs.


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Winter Skills Driving $99, if you mention you’re a member of MBCA.

MasterDrive, a local driving education

center of excellence, is offering a special price for Pikes Peak Section members for their three-hour Winter Driving Course. This training will be in your vehicle and work primarily with smoothness & skid prevention & skid recovery exercises. This will help you to become much more comfortable with winter weather & other slippery roads! See http://www.masterdrive.com/ winter-driving-skills for more information. The price for this course is normally $149 but MasterDrive is offering it to us for only

Meet The Board

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Current class dates and times are:

“...we have our

February 10, Sunday, 9:00 am - 12:00 pm February 18, Monday, 9:00 am - 12:00 pm March 6, Wednesday, 5:30 pm - 8:30 pm

worst winter weather still to come.”

March 16, Saturday, 9:00 am - 12:00 pm March 16, Saturday, 1:00 pm - 4:00 pm This is a really good deal - and don’t forget we have our worst winter weather still to come. Contact Judy Bennett for the registration materials (information sheet, application, and release of liability forms) at bennett912@comcast.net or give her a call at 719-576-9737.

by Andrew Nelson

s a twenty-year member of the Pikes Peak Section and having served on the Section board for many years and having served on the National Board as a Regional Director, I am familiar to most of you. So I thought I would share some experiences and adventures I have had with MercedesBenz vehicles. In no particular order....I once drove a 450 SEL 6.9 S-class sedan at 140 mph on the Autobahn from Bremen to Frankfurt. It was the most stable car at high speed that I have ever driven. The four axle hydropneumatic self-leveling suspension kept the car absolutely stable, with flat cornering. The only car that was trying to keep up with me on that early evening drive was a Saab 9000 turbo. On level grades or slight downhill sections, he could stay with me, but on any uphill grades, the 6.9’s V-8 torque would rapidly pull away and leave him in the dust. Another Autobahn memory....During our engagement, Julie and I took a trip to Germany. We had a 230 E sedan to drive. Julie got to drive on the Autobahn for the first time and took the car up to 134 mph (200 kph). I took a picture of the speed-

ometer. I’ll always remember how thrilled Julie was to drive that fast. This is more mundane but still amazing. I once drove a 280 SE sedan cross-country from Atlanta to Los Angeles and did not get one drop of any form of precipitation on the whole 2400 mile trip. There are always afternoon thunderstorms traveling through the southern states and there are usually brief but intense showers in New Mexico and Arizona. Well, there you have it. Come to think of it, I have driven or owned MercedesBenz vehicles most of my adult life. From intense off-highway treks in my 1961 404.1 Unimog to hundreds of thousands of highway miles driving a 1982 1419 Mercedes-Benz tanker truck for my job in the 1980s, I love these vehicles. Mercedes-Benz makes the most solid, capable and reliable vehicles on the planet. Julie and I continue to have fun adventures with our 1987 420 SEL and our 2000 ML 320. The MBCA is an excellent way to join fellow “star car” adventurers and share the experience of ownership of this great marque. ‘ROUND

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CLA Debut

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“Wearing a base price of

by Joel Feder

he baby Mercedes-Benz CLS four-door coupe is finally here, and its name is CLA. This compact coupe-like sedan debuted at the Detroit Auto Show and kicks off the first of three versions of the Mercedes A Classbased family cars arriving here in America over the next few years. The new CLA Class is a crucial model for MercedesBenz as this will be the first of the automaker’s new compact range headed to the U.S., its most important market. The CLA will be one of the most stylish cars in the compact segment.

space for four adults. A fifth-seat option may be available.

Under its pretty sheet metal is a version of Mercedes’ latest front-wheel drive platform, code-named MFA (Mercedes Frontwheel Architecture). This new platform is flexible enough to spawn a variety of models including hatchbacks, coupes and even a crossover, and it will offer the option of 4MATIC all-wheel drive.

It should also be a stout performer, with even the base CLA250 model packing a turbocharged and direct-injected 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine rated at 208 horsepower and 258 pound-feet of torque (211hp in European specification).

The CLA also marks the return of a frontabout $30,000, wheel drive Mercedes-Benz to our shores here in the U.S. market. Wearing a base the most strike- price of about $30,000, the most striking thing about the CLA is its silhouette. The ing thing about sleek lines, frameless windows, and large shoulder line give the car a terrific stance. the CLA is its The front of the CLA Class is almost identical to the latest A Class hatchback silhouette.” launched overseas, while the body gets four-door coupe styling that makes it resemble the CLS Class, albeit on a smaller scale. Overall length is 182.3 inches (just over 15 feet), which puts it in the same size category as the likes of the Acura ILX and Buick Verano. There should be ample ‘ROUND

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The interior of the CLA has an SLK feel to it, with five round air vents, extensive use of gray plastic, and an LCD screen on the dashboard for the infotainment system. Features such as Bluetooth, cruise control, a power driver seat, and MB-Tex upholstery are all standard. While a 5.8-inch screen running Mercedes-Benz’s mbrace2 is standard, a 7-inch screen with Mercedes’ COMAND system will be available.

A seven-speed dual-clutch transmission comes standard, with customers left to decide whether they want only the front wheels doing the driving or all four. Mercedes-Benz’s 4Matic all-wheel drive system will be an option. U.S.-delivered cars are likely to come with 4MATIC as standard. For the power hungry, an AMG model with close to 350 horsepower on tap is expected to be available shortly after launch. Already spotted testing in prototype form, the new addition, which will likely be called the CLA45 AMG, will be the second compact model in AMG’s expanding arsenal, and there certainly could be more.


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‘Round the Benz Editor 4335 Penhurst Place Colorado Springs, CO 80906 Return Service Requested

To:

Happy Valentine’s Day Calendar of Upcoming Events 5 February 2013 Monthly Board Meeting - 6:00 p.m. Andrew Nelson 719-464-7018 On the Web at www.mbca. org/pikes_ peak/

MBCA Pikes Peak Section

16 February 2013 Valentine Brunch - 9:30 a.m. Dan Kerbs 719-594-6017 23 February 2013 5280 Dinner - 7:00 p.m. Old Stone Church Judy Bennett

719-576-9737

1 March 2013 5280 Dinner - 7:15 p.m. McCormick & Schmick Judy Bennett

719-576-9737

2 March 2013 5280 Dinner - 7:30 p.m.

Gabriel’s Judy Bennett

719-576-9737

5 March 2013 Monthly Board Meeting - 6:00 p.m. Andrew Nelson 719-464-7018 16 March 2013* New Member Party - 5:30 p.m. Mary Bixler 719-597-1281 *No monthly breakfast in March 2 April 2013 Monthly Board Meeting - 6:00 p.m. Andrew Nelson 719-464-7018 14 April 2013 D-I-Y Tech Session - 10:00 a.m. Dave Williamson 719-575-7976

The Pikes Peak Section Board of Directors meets the First Tuesday of Each Month at Mercedes-Benz of Colorado Springs, 730 Automotive Drive. Meetings start at 6:00 p.m. All Section members are welcome and encouraged to attend. ‘ROUND

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February 'Round The Benz  

Monthly newsletter of the Pikes Peak Section of the Mercedes-Benz Club of America