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Auto blogThu, 08 Aug 2013 11:01:00 EST
Alex Rodriguez, in case you haven't heard, is seemingly the new Most Hated Man In Baseball, ostensibly replacing commissioner Bud Selig (for now). Rodriguez was slammed with a 211-game suspension due to his role in the MLB's latest steroid scandal in which "A-Roid," as fans have taken to calling the former superstar, was cited with steroid use and attempts to hide his involvement by "engaging in a course of conduct intended to obstruct and frustrate" the investigation, according to the MLB's official report.
Why is this on a car site, then? Because Rodriguez' name is attached Alex Rodriguez Mercedes-Benz in League City, TX. An Ad Age report cites Mercedes-Benz USA in saying that A-Rod owns "about half'" of the dealership. Mercedes, for what it's worth, isn't going to any to any lengths to distance itself from its dealership or its controversial namesake, saying, "We never promoted the fact that A-Rod owned a dealership, so there's really nothing to 'distance' ourselves from. And since his activity is not illegal but rather prohibited by MLB, there's nothing actionable here."
With the scandal still a fresh piece of news and A-Rod's pending appeal, it's difficult to tell what sort of effect, if any, his name will have on the dealership's sales. Ad Age contacted the GM of Alex Rodriguez Mercedes-Benz to get the dealership's view, but no calls were returned. According to Mercedes, any name change is up to Rodriguez and his partner(s) at the dealership. Somehow, though, we think A-Rod has other things to worry about beyond his dealership's name.
Wed, 30 Apr 2014 11:30:00 EST
Mercedes-Benz upgraded its SLS flagship Coupe and Roadster for the 2013 model year, and the changes are marked with them new "GT" nomenclature. Both SLS models arrive with a retuned naturally aspired 6.2-liter V8 delivering 583 horsepower and 479 pound-feet of torque (the horses are up from 563, but the torque remains the same) mated to a revised seven-speed AMG Speedshift dual-clutch gearbox. Rounding out the mechanical upgrades is a redeveloped AMG two-mode adaptive suspension. Physically, the revised models are differentiated by their new "GT" badging, darkened headlight/taillight buckets, red brake calipers, unique wheel colors and high gloss finish on the front grille, exterior mirrors and hood/fender fins. Inside the cabin are new red seatbelts, Alcantara upholstery and contrasting red stitching.
As it is nearly impossible to experience the aluminum gullwing beast on public roads, Mercedes invited out to Southern California's Willow Springs to wring out the 2013 SLS GT Coupe on a racing circuit.
BMW opened a whole Pandora's Box when it introduced the X6 back in 2008. Sure it made little sense, sacrificing all that "utility" for a little more "sport," but it's been a solid success for BMW - especially considering the nominal expense it cost to develop the X6 on top of the X5 on which it's based. Little wonder that, while BMW has already followed up with a smaller version in the form of the X4, other automakers are starting to catch up. And that includes Mercedes-Benz.
The German automaker is preparing to launch a new MLC, based on the M-Class but with a sportier silhouette, and previewed it with the Concept Coupe SUV at the Beijing Motor Show. But that's just the start, according to the latest report from Automotive News Europe.
Mercedes is reportedly considering spinning off an entire line of crossovers more for use on the road than off it. Which may go without saying for most crossovers on the market, but considering the Geländwagen with which Mercedes got its start in SUVs, would mean an even further departure than it has undertaken already.