The new Mercedes-AMG GT3 to Appear in the MSS Security Ultimate Speed Comparison


Melbourne – Two AMG powered vehicles are set to go head to head with the 2016 Formula 1® Rolex Australian Grand Prix Two-seater presented by Swisse across the biggest motorsport weekend in Australia. Following its Australasian premiere the Mercedes-AMG GT3 race car will compete alongside a Mercedes-AMG C 63 S Estate to challenge the two-seater F1 race car in the MSS Security Ultimate Speed Comparison.
Five-time MotoGP World Champion Mick Doohan will once again pilot a road going Mercedes-AMG, which in 2016 will be the AMG C 63 S Estate. Mercedes-Benz Driving Academy Chief Driving Instructor, Peter Hackett, will be driving the latest race car from AMG, the Mercedes-AMG GT3.
Driving the 2016 Formula 1® Rolex Australian Grand Prix Two-seater presented by Swisse will be experienced racing driver Cameron McConville.
The Mercedes-AMG C 63 S Estate – Sportiness and dynamism carefully considered, the AMG C 63 S Estate offers exceptional race track performance and practicallity. The sum of the performance-oriented equipment, a sumptuous interior and outstanding technology, lifts the new AMG C 63 S to a new league of high-performance vehicles.
Five-time MotoGP World Champion Mick Doohan said, “I recently drove the new Mercedes-AMG C 63 S around Mount Panorama in Bathurst and just couldn’t believe the power delivery from the Bi-turbo V8 down Conrod straight, I can’t wait to see what it can do around Albert Park.
The other two guys will be fast and that new AMG GT3 looks fast even at a standstill. Though I’ll be in a road going production car, I’ll be doing everything I can to keep them both in my mirrors”, concluded Doohan.

Continue reading The new Mercedes-AMG GT3 to Appear in the MSS Security Ultimate Speed Comparison

BMW Group Australia launches eDrive plug-in hybrid program from May


  • The new BMW 330e Sedan and BMW X5 xDrive40e to arrive from May.
  • Introduces a hybrid alternative across BMW’s two-highest selling model ranges.
  • BMW eDrive platform delivers fuel efficient motoring and low emissions while retaining trademark BMW performance.
  • Both models are capable of completing urban commutes exclusively via electric power (BMW 330e Sedan: up to 37km; BMW X5 xDrive40e: 31km).
  • Expands BMW Group Australia’s commitment to alternative fuel vehicles.

BMW Group Australia will launch its eDrive hybrid program during 2016, welcoming the arrival of the BMW 330e Sedan and BMW X5 xDrive40e to its product portfolio from May.
The introduction of an eDrive variant across BMW’s two highest selling model ranges underlines the brand’s commitment to remaining at the forefront of sustainability in the automotive industry through its EfficientDynamics engineering program.
Featuring plug-in hybrid technology transferred from the BMW i sub-brand, the BMW 330e Sedan and BMW X5 xDrive40e combine emission-free driving on electric power alone, with the range and performance offered by a petrol engine.

Continue reading BMW Group Australia launches eDrive plug-in hybrid program from May

Comfortably exceeding expectations: BMW i8 is the world’s highest-selling hybrid sports car


Exclusive BMW i8 special editions. Protonic Red Edition gets the ball rolling at the Geneva Motor Show.

Munich. Last year, global sales of the BMW i8 exceeded the combined figure of all other hybrid sports cars produced by other manufacturers*; 5,456 units of the i8, which is powered by the combination of a three-cylinder turbocharged engine and an electric drive system, were sold worldwide in 2015. The car’s innovative plug-in hybrid technology delivers system output of 266 kW/362 hp (fuel consumption combined: 2.1 l/100 km [134.5 mpg imp]; CO2 emissions combined: 49 g/km)**. “The success of the BMW i8 speaks for itself,” said Ian Robertson, BMW AG Board Member for Sales and Marketing. “It is already the world’s most successful hybrid sports car and has comfortably exceeded our own expectations. I can think of no better illustration of the relevance of our young BMW i brand.” And the BMW i8 is about to add further lustre to its appeal with exclusive special-edition models poised to be unveiled for the first time at the Geneva Motor Show. The new arrivals present customers with even more ways to own a very individual car.

BMW i8 Protonic Red Edition will be built in Leipzig from July.
The first in this line of special-edition models is the BMW i8 Protonic Red Edition. Like those set to follow in its tyre tracks, it is only available for a limited period.
This take on the 2+2-seater with carbon-fibre-reinforced plastic (CFRP) passenger cell and efficient BMW eDrive drive system technology will be produced at BMW Plant Leipzig from July; it sports a Protonic Red paint finish with accents in Frozen Grey metallic. The colour scheme is complemented by BMW W-spoke 470 light-alloy wheels painted in Orbit Grey metallic with hubs painted in Aluminium matt and mixed-size tyres (front: 215/45 R20, rear: 245/40 R20). Inside the inaugural special-edition i8, red double-stitching and applications in high-grade carbon fibre and ceramic provide indications of its exceptional sporting character.

Continue reading Comfortably exceeding expectations: BMW i8 is the world’s highest-selling hybrid sports car

“This Day Forward” released online


Extraordinary short film by Oscar-winner Joachim Back marks the launch of the new MINI Convertible

Munich. MINI has launched the third phase of the new MINI Convertible campaign with the release of the short film “This Day Forward” on the campaign website and on YouTube: The film was directed by awardwinning director Joachim Back, who won the Oscar for Best Short Film for “The New Tenants” in 2010.

Reason or passion? Sometimes it takes several attempts to figure out what we really want. Protagonist Jake finds himself in such a situation, in which he has to decide whether to sell his record label in a deal worth millions or reject the offer and continue to pursue his dream in the music business. A total of three episodes, in which Jake relives the day of his decision, show how Jake gradually resolves to follow his heart. The film’s unique narrative mechanism, which reveals different facets and details of the story step by step, creates suspense and visualises the implications of Jake’s dilemma.

With this story, the short film personifies in Jake both the MINI target group’s positive and cosmopolitan attitude to life and the character of the new MINI Convertible – freethinking and open-minded, with a zest for life.

The short film entitled “This Day Forward” was shot on location in and around Miami and the Florida Keys. The Gulf Coast, with its white beaches and palm trees, and the multicultural, open-minded city of Miami correspond to the positioning of the MINI Convertible. The screenplay was written in close cooperation between MINI and the agency WCRS in London; Oscar-winner Joachim Back was directing. The Danish director’s experience with short films makes him the ideal creative partner. With his ambitious cinematic aspirations and love of detail, his work for the MINI Convertible goes far beyond the classic promotional film. His interpretation of the MINI Convertible’s character creates something quite unique.

The fact that the campaign centres on a short film, rather than classic advertising media, underlines the new MINI brand strategy, with a stronger focus on authenticity and content. With a short film, MINI is deliberately distancing itself from regular advertising media and setting a new benchmark. In this way, MINI is responding to the changing needs of its target group, for whom classic advertising is less and less relevant. Instead, the campaign relies on Jake’s relevant and authentic story to convey MINI’s core brand values of passion and a positive attitude to life in an emotional and contemporary way.

“By presenting the MINI Convertible attitude in a unique film, we are able to create a sustainable and authentic experience with an intensity that cannot be achieved in a regular ad”, explains Marc Lengning, head of MINI Brand Management.

The short film is the heart of the global MINI Convertible campaign. The campaign claim “Stay Open” symbolises the diversity of its target group and ties in with the “Always Open” campaign for the previous model. On a rational level, it highlights the possibility of driving the new MINI Convertible with the top down for even longer, thanks to new product features. On an emotional level, it reflects the free-spirited attitude of its target group, which is always cosmopolitan and open-minded.

The film was already previewed in previous phases of the campaign in various online activities and a teaser. The suspense grew from phase to phase and has now culminated in the film’s release on the campaign website. With a clear focus on online communications, the campaign will also be accompanied by classic TV, print and out-ofhome communications. In this way, the campaign accompanies prospective buyers throughout the entire sales channel.

The agencies involved were WCRS from London and Soup. Filmproduktion from Berlin.

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BMW at the International Motor Show 2016

BMW i8 Protonic Red Edition
BMW i8 Protonic Red Edition
  • World premiere: The new BMW M760Li xDrive raises the bar in the sporting luxury sedan segment as the flagship variant of the successfully launched BMW 7 Series model range. The first ever M Performance TwinPower Turbo 12-cylinder petrol engine generates 441 kW/600 hp* and sprints from 0 to 100 km/h / 62 mph in 3.9 seconds* (fuel consumption combined: 12.6 l/100 km [22.4 mpg imp]; CO2  emissions combined: 294 g/km)**.
  • The new iPerformance model designation, which will be given to all   BMW plug-in hybrid vehicles from July 2016, provides a visible indicator of the transfer of technology from BMW i to the BMW core brand. It will be seen first on the plug-in hybrid variants of the new BMW 7 Series, e.g. the BMW 740e iPerformance. The iPerformance models will benefit from the transfer of technical expertise regarding electric motors, battery cells and electronic control systems. Visible indicators, meanwhile, are a BMW i logo on the front side panel, BMW i-style blue elements in the kidney grille and wheel hubs, and an eDrive logo on the C-pillar.
    Customers can also make use of the BMW i 360° ELECTRIC range of products and services, including the BMW i Wallbox.
  • The new BMW M2 takes to the stage with BMW M Performance Parts. A wide variety of components are available for the compact high- performance sports machine which enhance its dynamics and individualise its design.
  • BMW i presents the BMW i8 Protonic Red Edition special-edition model and highlights its success on various fronts. BMW i has achieved the largest market presence of any premium supplier of electric vehicles worldwide and offers the world’s only car with a certified carbon footprint*** in the shape of the BMW i3.
  • BMW ConnectedDrive presents the On-Street Parking Information intelligent search function – which helps drivers to locate a free parking space in cities more quickly – and other services.

Continue reading BMW at the International Motor Show 2016

The new BMW M760Li xDrive. Captivating performance and supreme comfort combined


With the new BMW M760Li xDrive, the freshly launched new BMW 7 Series is gaining a prestigious flagship model. Headlined by its exceptional refinement and supreme power delivery at all times, the 12-cylinder petrol engine with M Performance TwinPower Turbo technology under the bonnet reinforces the new car’s range-topping status. The boldly dynamic driving characteristics of the BMW M760Li xDrive combine with superior ride comfort to make a compelling statement and set a new benchmark in the luxury sedan segment.

Powerful and authoritative.
The new BMW M760Li xDrive gives a debut to the new M Performance TwinPower Turbo 12-cylinder petrol engine. Concealed under a cover bearing “M Performance” lettering, the 6.6-litre V12 develops output of 441 kW/600 hp* at 5,500 rpm* and peak torque of 800 Nm (590 lb-ft)* at 1,500 rpm* (fuel consumption combined: 12.6 l/100 km [22.4 mpg imp]; CO2  emissions combined: 294 g/km)**. The high-performance unit with leading-edge M Performance TwinPower Turbo technology accelerates the BMW M760Li xDrive from 0 to 100 km/h (62 mph) in just 3.9 seconds* on the way to an electronically limited top speed of 250 km/h (155 mph). If the optional M Driver’s Package is specified, the speed limiter doesn’t cut in until 305 km/h (189 mph). Power transfer is via the state-of-the-art eight-speed Steptronic Sport transmission as standard. The M Performance- specific tuning of the shift programs, delivering sportier gear changes and more instantaneous downshifts throughout the rev range, has been specially adapted to the characteristics of the V12 engine. With its optimal internal efficiency and a gear-change strategy assisted by navigation data, the eight- speed Steptronic Sport transmission contributes to the authoritative driving experience and works seamlessly with the standard Auto Start Stop function.

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Mercedes-Benz Australia’s response to Personal Imports of Motor Vehicles

Melbourne – The announcement by the Federal Government today of planned changes to the Motor Vehicle Standards Act 1989 is disappointingly low on detail despite more than two years of intensive discussion.

The CEO of Mercedes-Benz Australia Pacific, Mr. Horst von Sanden said “Despite two years of consultation with the industry, the announcement was not accompanied by a Regulatory Impact Statement or any specific detail as to how these planned changes would be implemented. This is not just disappointing, but seems to indicate that the Government actually has no plan for how they will implement the changes. If a plan has been constructed I look forward with much anticipation to reading it as will all stakeholders. The matters that we are very concerned about go to the heart of Consumer protection and the integrity of the New Vehicle market in Australia.“

We have a number of serious concerns over the lack of specific detail and the irresponsibility and misconceptions that the Governments statement and position will create.

Australian Consumer Law currently provides comprehensive protection for automotive consumers when a vehicle is imported to Australia by the OEM. The owner of a privately imported vehicle will have ZERO protection under Australian Consumer Law. The Government explains this better on their own websites.

´”Information for individuals seeking to purchase a vehicle overseas, and subsequent buyers in the Australian used vehicle market, will be made available through the Department’s website, including a recommendation that buyers purchase insurance and/or warranty coverage for repairs and possible safety recalls. “

The requirement of affixing a compliance plate to a vehicle is apparently to be scrapped and replaced with an as yet nonexistent, ill-defined and unfunded Register of Approved Vehicles that will contain the details of all vehicles. Who will control, fund and maintain this register accurately?
The Government talks about a Global regime and Global Standards. Of the 193 Countries in the world only 57 have adopted the so called Global Standards.
The Government says it is not proceeding with allowing second hand cars to be imported yet it claims that a ‘New Car’ can be up to twelve months old and have up to 500km. Nowhere in the world is a car up to 12 months old and with up to 500km’s regarded as new. In the industry this is NOT a new car, it is categorized as a DEMONSTRATOR and is a second hand vehicle.
The Government has not provided a (RIS) Regulatory Impact Statement that would outline the impacts and implications of this significant policy change. Surely the industry and the consumer are entitled to know what the implications of the decision will be and how the Government has reached this decision. The Office of Prime Minister and Cabinet says on its official website:“

A RIS is a document prepared by the department, agency, statutory authority or board responsible for a regulatory policy proposal that formalises and provides evidence of the key steps taken during the development of the proposal, and includes an assessment of the costs and benefits of each option.

Preparation of a RIS ensures that all relevant information is documented, and that the decision-making processes are made explicit and transparent.”

The Government has announced no demonstrable or detailed plans as to how consumers will be protected against buying a stolen, financed or insurance write off vehicle. Currently, any customer vehicle purchased through official channels has guaranteed title against such issues. The considerable and valuable work done by Australia’s National Motor Vehicle Theft Reduction Council will all be diminished by suspect vehicles crossing our borders without compliance plates.
Mercedes-Benz Australia is not frightened of reform, what we are frightened of is the disruption and diminution of one of the rights of Australian consumers which this policy proposal completely and totally disregards. It will create second class consumers when there is no demonstrated need to do so.

Local MINI Convertible pricing and specification announced


  • Latest edition of the only premium convertible in the small car segment to start from $37,900* for the entry-level Cooper model.
  • Features extensive list of standard specification, including alloy wheels, cloth upholstery, Reversing Camera with guidance lines, rear Park Distance Control and automatic dual zone climate control air conditioning.
  • The sportier Cooper S Convertible starts from $45,400* and benefits from further standard specification inclusions, such as a six-speed sports automatic transmission with paddle shift gear change, cloth/leather upholstery, John Cooper Works leather steering wheel, LED headlights, MINI Navigation System and MINI Driving Modes.
  • The new MINI Convertible is longer (+98mm), wider (+44mm), taller (+7mm), and features an extended wheelbase (+28mm) as well as a broader track (front: +42mm; rear: +34mm), compared to its predecessor.
  • Luggage volume has expanded by nearly 25 per cent to 215 litres with a closed top and 160 litres when the roof is retracted.
  • Available in Australia during the second quarter of 2016.

MINI Australia has announced pricing and specification of the new MINI Convertible ahead of its local launch during the second quarter of 2016.

Starting from $37,900* for the entry-level Cooper model, the MINI Convertible is equipped with a six-speed automatic transmission as standard, in addition to alloy wheels, reversing camera with guide lines, fully automatic soft-top with sliding roof function and rear Park Distance Control.

Continue reading Local MINI Convertible pricing and specification announced

New extensive range of BMW M Performance Parts for the new BMW M2 Coupé


Diverse components to increase dynamic performance and individual design flair. 

Munich. The new BMW M2 Coupé (combined fuel consumption: 8.5 l/100 km; combined CO2 emissions: 199 g/km)* sets the benchmark in the segment of compact high-performance sports cars when it comes to driving dynamics and performance. Its extrovert design further underscores the car’s highly dynamic character and outstanding suitability for the race track. From March 2016, the dynamic qualities and the visual appearance of the BMW M2 Coupé can be further enhanced with the newly presented range of BMW M Performance Parts. They comprise components derived from motor racing for the areas of aerodynamics, engine, cockpit and suspension which meet the very highest standards in terms of functionality and design.

Aerodynamic components for an improved appearance and driving response.

The M Performance Parts product portfolio features a particularly extensive range of aerodynamic components made of carbon-reinforced plastic (CFRP or carbon fibre). These include front and side sill attachments, rear diffuser and mirror caps that are perfectly harmonised in their aerodynamic effect and additionally emphasise the powerful exterior design of the compact high-performance sports car.

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Pure power: the Audi RS Q3 performance


  • New top model with more power and exclusive equipment
  • Award-winning five-cylinder with 270 kW
  • RS Q3 performance to arrive in Australia before the end of 2016

Ingolstadt, 5 February, 2016 – Audi is igniting the next stage of performance in the compact, high-performance SUV segment. The Audi RS Q3 performance impresses with an output of 270 kW and 465 Nm of torque. This incredible power catapults the new top-of-the-line model from 0 to 100 km/h in just 4.4 seconds. Standard top speed is 270 km/h.

The premium brand is honing its sporty profile with new RS performance models. The “performance” in the name stands for both a significant power boost and exclusive equipment that clearly elevates the respective model above the rest of the portfolio. This also applies to the new RS Q3 performance, whose pulse is driven by the legendary Audi five-cylinder engine. Since 2010, an international panel of automotive journalists has named the 2.5 TFSI “International Engine of the Year” in its category six years in a row. With its pulling power, free-revving character and inimitable sound, goosebumps are guaranteed.

Compared with the RS Q3, Audi has bumped up the output of the 2.5 TFSI engine for the performance model. The developers increased the cooling capacity of the main radiator and optimised the fuel pump to give the five-cylinder turbo in the RS Q3 performance 20 kW more power. Peak torque of 465 Nm is available between 1,625 and 5,550 rpm. The sporty, compact SUV thus accelerates from 0 to 100 km/h in 4.4 seconds and reaches a top speed of 270 km/h. Combined NEDC fuel consumption is 8.6 litres per 100 km, corresponding to 203 grams CO2 per km.

Continue reading Pure power: the Audi RS Q3 performance