Variance

Preview: Mercedes-Benz Concept Ocean Drive

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Variance    0

Preview: Mercedes-Benz Concept Ocean Drive

Detroit, Dec 20, 2006 -- At the North American Auto Show Detroit, Mercedes-Benz is adding to its reputation as a pioneer and design trendsetter among premium carmakers with the presentation of its Concept Ocean Drive four-door convertible. This study is a one-off creation by Mercedes-Benz which revives the tradition of large luxury convertibles. Not having to work to a design brief or production specifications left the designers free to get on with the job of developing the world's most comfortable and elegant convertible.

The Concept Ocean Drive is an aweinspiring jewel on wheels. As a four-door convertible, it belongs in a luxury genre that has almost disappeared from our roads. Like the luxury convertibles of years gone by, this showpiece from Stuttgart features the maximum in elegance, lifestyle sophistication and exclusiveness. To put it another way, it represents automobile culture at its most attractive and desirable.

The one-off special has an all-new body with an almost classic flavour and with clearly defined lines and vibrant two-tone paintwork which are exceptionally charismatic. Although on one level the Concept Ocean Drive displays the restraint of an elite and aristocratic automobile, it is also an open invitation to go on a "top-less" cruise along the world's finest ocean promenades. Luxurious, exotic materials have been crafted with consummate skill to create a showpiece of unparalleled perfection.

Mercedes-Benz design studies – a stylistic journey into the future

The Concept Ocean Drive isn't just designed to inspire dreams and fantasies; it also serves a very practical purpose. Because design studies are always a good opportunity for designers to play around with less familiar themes, to see things from new angles and to explore new ideas. Not just a pure design exercise, they are also a way of stimulating a closer dialogue with customers and of trying out new ideas on the general public. This helps the designers get a feel for future styling trends and to develop and implement new design idioms.

The unique luxury convertible design study from Stuttgart turns a "dream car" vision into reality. At the same time it is also an affirmation of the design excellence and values of the Mercedes-Benz brand, including the brand's traditional basic principles like excellent build and quality, comfort, effortless superiority, value retention and safety. These values have now been joined by three further key messages: passion, fascination and innovation. The Mercedes-Benz design philosophy both perpetuate proven styling themes associated with the brand and at the same time combines them with new and surprising ideas and forms.

Styling conveys effortless superiority and elegance

Apart from the four doors, the outward distinguishing marks of the concept car include a very large and upright radiator grille, LED headlamps and taillights, two-tone paintwork and a striking interplay between taut lines and large, restful surfaces. This lends the one-off special an air of effortless superiority, power, elegance and forward-flowing energy.

The long side-window opening which, typically of a convertible, is not interrupted by a B-pillar or window frames, ensures seamless continuity between the exterior and the interior, even when the top is up. Extensive use of high-value materials –such as finest-quality leather, 3D-effect materials and large bird's eye maple trim panels (in the interior and even on the soft-top compartment cover) – and many other thoughtfully designed interior details, highlight the luxurious, unique character of this design study.

Top-level engineering

The design study is based on the twelve-cylinder Mercedes-Benz S 600, on ac-count of this model's long wheelbase. The technical highlights include:

the innovative soft-top mechanism resulting in smooth operation and fast closing times; the innovative AIRSCARF neck-level heating system, which is featured on all four seats, allowing occupants to enjoy top-down motoring even in the colder months of the year.

Needless to say, the on-board equipment also includes top-level Mercedes-Benz innovations, some of which are unique worldwide – including Brake Assist PLUS, the innovative PRE-SAFE® brake system (in combination with radar-based DIS-TRONIC PLUS) and the PRE-SAFE® anticipatory occupant protection system.

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[source: DaimlerChrysler]

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AH-HA    2

Now that is a real Mercedes, elegant and sophisticated. Ocean Drive is meant to inspire images of South Beach in Miami, what better place to be seen cruising.

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mjdecker    0

You know, I've always hated the idea of 4 door convertibles and haven't seen one that worked.. this one however I like.

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It's ok...the idea's cool, it's just that I'm not exactly fond of M-B's recent styling.

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Flybrian    0

I usually really like turbine wheels but these...are a bit much. Also, not a big fan of the color.

But that doesn't overtake the fact that this car is wicked awesome

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balthazar    1,852

After reading what is the hands-down most overblown & overwrought press release ever written in the history of.... writing ("exceptionally charismatic, effortless superiority"- F-ing please)- the pics are a superior letdown. It looks fat, bloated and anemic to me, besides the fact it's nothing more than a milquetoast reskin of a last-gen s-class with the roof lopped off. The same elements over and over and over again gets awfully tiresome after a few decades. And the wheels are absolutely horrifying. Can the mercedes brand of DCX ever branch out stylistically, or is the one-trick pony show all we can ever expect?

Look; the car is clean and pleasant overall and defiantely upscale but 'exceptionally charismatic'? The concept is, but the execution was played so close to the vest the outcome is mediocre as a concept car. In fact- it should've just been brought out as a production car without all the dripping self-congratulatory snobbery.

I will compliment DCX highly for building bodystyles (so far: the 2-dr hardtop) that noone else will anymore.

BTW: "design trendsetter"- the only thing coming to mind right now is ribbed bodyside cladding... someone help me here.

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Croc    268

What a work of art! This thing wasn't just constructed, it was designed...like the Beverly Hills it needs to be driven through.

Breathtakingly beautiful.

The front fascia has "instant classic" written all over it. I love the semi-formal C-pillar (or is it really B-pillar in this case?).

Honestly, the worst thing about it is the grey ocean view in the photography. Why not take some pictures around Santa Monica or the Palisades? The colors are much more vivid there!

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NOS2006    11

That defines beautifully elegant luxury car. I love it.

(Did DCX designers stop designing Chrysler/Dodge/Jeep vehicles to help out Mercedes with their good ideas?)

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turbo200    6

It's almost too much--Mercedes keeps figuring out new ways to pamper its customers, new niches to define luxury in. I know Cadillac and Lincoln started this segment decades ago, but look how far lost they are, that MB has taken this segment into the new generation. And it's the ultimate definition of pimp but it looks thoroughly modern, austere, and intimadating. It's a good idea from MB...not the kind of car I would ever own though.

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ocnblu    731
Beautiful except for the robotron headlights and the centipede wheels. Very formal and elegant. Love the canvas roof. I hope the folding hardtop fad fades quickly.

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Should this not have been an LA debut (or Miami)?  I mean there is not an ocean near Detroit.

230736[/snapback]

Yes, LA would have made more sense... the audience of potential buyers for such a car is there also...

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I can not dislike a 4dr ragtop... this is very cool.

Agreed with OB abotu the headlights though.

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red    0

Nicely restrained, very classical "Mercedes."

Doesn't really "wow" me, but designs like this usually stand the test of time.

Character lines are slightly derivative of the Bentley Continental GT.

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balthazar    1,852

Umm, wow, BV; a true first.

I was thinking about this thing when I walked past a CLS today in a parking lot. The CLS is the logical next step, design-wise, for mercedes- it's very sleek and slippery, it looks somewhat futuristic & sporty at the same time. I was lukewarm on it when the pics broke, bt after seeing a few- it does grow on you.

But this concept 4-dr convert is a throwback to the old thick stodgy upright mercedes. It's a big step backwards. Why not a 4-dr convert CLS??

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MyerShift    7

I am getting more than a hint of Chrylser's recently crappy design aspect over here.

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bobo    91

I don't find the design to be particularly imaginative, but it is classical, as many have said. Of all the current MB designs, I continue to like the E-Class the best despite fresher designs introduced after it, because it has more of a timeless look to it.

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Cory Wolfe    263

Umm, wow, BV; a true first.

I was thinking about this thing when I walked past a CLS today in a parking lot. The CLS is the logical next step, design-wise, for mercedes- it's very sleek and slippery, it looks somewhat futuristic & sporty at the same time. I was lukewarm on it when the pics broke, bt after seeing a few- it does grow on you.

But this concept 4-dr convert is a throwback to the old thick stodgy upright mercedes. It's a big step backwards. Why not a 4-dr convert CLS??

230923[/snapback]

Again, I must agree. :lol:

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