The Queen City Star March 2019 Edition

In this Issue

  • President's Message
  • Event reviews
  • Future Event Previews
  • Tech Corner
  • MBUSI Articles

President's Message

I know many of you drive your Mercedes frequently all year. Unfortunately mine only come out when the weather is nice and there is no salt on the roads. I walk past them every day in the garage and keep hoping spring arrives soon! I added another car to my fleet in January so I am especially anxious to get it out on the road! We have a full calendar of events and they all involve driving (even if it is just to a destination). Be sure to check out the event calendar. We have a wide variety of events that I hope will be of interest to many of our member. I look forward to seeing everyone soon at one or all of them. Even though the weather was a little frightening a few weeks ago we had a very nice turnout for our annual bowling event. We enjoyed some good food and bowled a few games. Some even ventured into the venue’s laser tag area and were talking about checking out a bungee cord walk area. Your president would rather drive on icy roads vs avoiding a laser shooting and certainly falling off something that involves being connected to a bungee cord LOL. Probably for the same reason I never travel with my 80 something mother on her many “adventure” trips that involve hiking in remote lands, jeep travel in remote deserts and mountains in places like India, Africa and Morocco - I am just not that adventurous with my personal safety.

I would like to talk briefly about membership. Peter has informed me that our chapter’s membership numbers are declining, which is concerning. I have seen this occur throughout most non profit/volunteer groups I am affiliated with. There are many factors that drive this, some are for example, people moving away, social media has replaced in many instances the thought that belonging to a group is needed or people just lose interest/get burned out with whatever group they belong. I think we have a great variety of events and the board works hard to ensure that new people/people we have not met feel welcome at our events. I believe our biggest challenge is marketing/awareness. I can’t tell you how may times I talk to someone that owns a Mercedes and almost 100% of the time they are not aware of our club or our chapter. After I talk about all our events and the value (i.e. discounts, meeting some fun people etc) you get with club membership they usually are very interested in joining. I would really appreciate hearing from our membership before our March 30th board meeting. What do you think we should do to increase membership? - any input would be greatly appreciated. I don’t have all the answers and I hope that my assumptions about our events and people feeling welcome are true, if they are not I certainly would like hear what we need to change. You can reach me via mercedesbenzaddict@gmail.com or by phone at 513.349.7160

Mark W. Smith

Tour of ZAKIRA'S Garage

A wonderful hidden gem of Cincinnati

Twenty-two members of the Section visited Zakira's Garage on a cold January day in 2019. We were not disappointed by this amazing working Garage. Historically this garage specialized in old Indy 500 racers, but also works on anything they can get their hands on!

The main highlight of this place was the owners. Thy take meticlious care of the cars they are working on and share a passion rarely seen in shops these days.

The section was very excited to visit this place and everyone loved the different types of vehicles

Bowling and Billiards

We kicked it up a level this year, and had a ton of fun!

On Sunday February 17th 2019 The Cincinnati section sponsored our annual bowling and billiards event. This year the event was totally free to our members and their families and was held at the Main Event entertainment complex in West Chester Ohio.

The fun and laughs began as the bowling balls began to roll down the lanes (or the gutter)

The Main Event set up a buffet for us that included:

  • Classic chicken wings tossed with your choice of Classic Buffalo or Honey Sriracha BBQ sauce. Served with celery, carrots and buttermilk ranch dressing.
  • Artisan Street Tacos (Smoked Brisket).
  • Bacon Cheeseburger Sliders.
  • Warm bite-sized pretzels baked and served with Cheddar cheese queso and Bavarian pub-style mustard dip.
  • Caesar Salad and House made Parmesan chips served with ranch and onion dip

After the bowling was complete every person in our group was given a $10 funcard that could be used on any of the many video games at the facility.

To top off the evening the adrenaline really got going as attendees were given a free round of Laser Tag. That’s right we donned a vest and lasers and ventured into the dark tagging as many unsuspecting victims as possible.

All and all everyone had a great time as they left the event with huge smiles on their faces.

Thank you to everyone that attendant, without the support of our members these events would not be possible.

Drive and Dine

Join us for a morning of fun on March 23rd.

We will meet at 9:30AM at Kellogg Field Dog Park (6701 Kellogg Rd, Cincinnati, OH 45230).

We will leave for the CarBoard Boat Museum Promptly at 9:45AM.

Once we arrive at the Boat Museum, we will tour the only Cardboard boat museum in the country.

After the tour, we will then drive to Skipper's River Cafe (395 Susanna Way # 4, New Richmond, OH 45157) for lunch.

Please join us for this fun morning and wonderful drive.

How Mercedes-Benz Found Two Classic 300SL Gullwing “Twins”

The Tri-Star 1954 sports cars boast successive chassis numbers.


The 24th Amelia Island Concours d’Elegance is a magical place to hear about the illustrious histories of incredible cars, and the “twin” 1954 300SL Gullwings that the Mercedes-Benz Classic Center displayed was no exception. The vehicles bear successive chassis numbers, and No. 43 is a homegrown hero to the Jacksonville, Fla., car show.

“We found this right up the road in Jacksonville,” says Constantin von Kageneck from the Mercedes-Benz Classic Center in Irvine, California, motioning to a gray model parked on the fairway at the The Ritz-Carlton, Amelia Island. “The second owner bought it used and it didn’t have a spare wheel, so he went to a local dealer, Platt Motors, and its tag is still on that rim. This car’s been in Jacksonville its whole life.

It was originally purchased by a lawyer for the Winn-Dixie corporation, who also founded the local SCCA club, and took it for some racing fun before selling it to his mechanic, who also raced it. It was purchased in 1957 by a naval pilot stationed in Jacksonville, who later went to law school in Gainesville. He was getting ready to paint it, hence the primer gray you see here, and had taken parts off. (Indeed, a bag of rusty bits and trim are visible in the trunk.) And then, in 1965, everything just stopped and that’s the last time anyone saw it. “We know that because he was in the process of re-dyeing the seats, and the newspaper on the back of one of the cushions is from 1965,” says von Kageneck.

Amelia Island Concours founder Bill Warner had seen the car ages ago when he was 16 and informed Mercedes-Benz about it. The company ended up purchasing it in 2018 for just under $1 million, according to von Kageneck. Gone was the original medium blue hue, and the Classic Center gang found plenty of rat nests in the car, but many original touches remained, including the gooseneck shifter (something only the first 50 or so 300SLs featured), fading gray leather seats, the wheels and the “Englebert Competition” tires, and the drivetrain. On the odometer, 35,308 miles are shown.

Its brother, No. 44, was a factory refresh done at the behest of the customer. The 300SL was originally delivered in fire-engine red paint with a white leather interior, but the new buyer believe the white cabin would be too hard to keep clean. He opted for a natural tan leather interior (with a matching luggage set) with a Mercedes Blue exterior. “The engine was on the dyno last Tuesday, and we power-tested it and put it in the car. It was just finished,” says von Kageneck, adding they don’t test it for the actual amount of power, though he believes it to be “a bit under the 240 hp they used to advertise.”

As for the barn find No. 43, it’s headed to the Essen auction in Northern Germany in a few weeks, and if the person who buys it wants it restored, it’ll head to the Classic Center in Stuttgart. “The cost of restoration would be in excess of $800,000, and it’s hard to say what the car could get at auction. Unrestored cars are almost doing better than restored cars now,” von Kageneck says. “Either way, today is the cheapest day to restore your car,” he grins. “Tomorrow it will only be more expensive.”

Spring Classic Driving Tour

April 27th

This year our section will participate in the Sing Classic Driving Tour. It is put on by local enthuasists, and is a countryside tour and car show benefiiting local charities.

The cost to enter is $35, payable at the link below, and includes the following:

  • Breakfast for two at the starting point.
  • A couple hour country side tour mapped out specifically for our Mercedes Classics, and Modern cars.
  • A spot in the car show in downtown New Richmond.

The charity we are supporting is: Brigid’s Path in Kettering, Ohio. They care for drug addicted newborns. It’s an all donation, all volunteer staff operation to save these infants.

Here are all the details:

Scenic Driving Tour open to all enthusiasts, collectors, vehicles and the public

Gather with a “Coffee & Queue Up” at Scene 75 Parking Lot in Milford at , 8 am-11 am (876 OH-28, Milford, OH 45150)

First Car Out on Driving Tour 10:30 am, Last group out 11:15 am

Driving Tour to Adams County features several stops including an Amish Market for shopping, historic sites, antiques stores. Individualized routes geared to the classic vehicle you are driving. Scenic ride along the Mighty Ohio River to New Richmond Ohio for Cruise In or Motor Show, food, beverage and fun.


Saturday April 27, 2019

Inviting all Enthusiasts and Clubs to Participate 1 pm to 6 pm. On the Riverfront in New Richmond Ohio. Dedicated Display Area for each club/organization Judged Awards and People’s Choice

Airstream Factory Tour

June 1st

MBCA will be joining Alumapaloosa at the Airstream Factory in Jackson Center, OH. The details are being finalized and will be available in April. Please mark your calendar as you won’t want to miss this event. Several other MBCA Sections are being invited to join us.

Alumapaloosa is an annual Airstream celebration for their customers. There are numerous things going on in addition to the factory tour, so it should be a lot of fun. Check out http://alumapalooza.com/ for details.

IMSA Racing at Mid-Ohio

Saturday, May 4th

We are still finalizing details for this event, but we plan to Caravan up saturday morning, spend the day at the track, and either stay in hotel, or drive back to Cincinnati.

Mid-Ohio is about 2.5 hours away in Lexington, Ohio, and is a premiere track for events like this.

General Admission access for Saturday, May 4, 2019 is $55 a person. Children 12 and under are admitted free general admission with a ticketed adult.

Keep an eye out for email blasts about this event coming soon!

March Board Meeting

March 30th at 10am Mercedes Benz of Ft. Mitchell

Join us for our board meeting. We will go over events, finances, membership, and more! Attending is a great way to get involved, and make sure your voice is heard! We hope to see you there!

Please park in the service area for this board meeting as they have another event going on that morning.

Tech Corner

Mercedes plans advanced self-driving tech for next S class

PARIS -- The next Mercedes-Benz S class will offer the brand's first self-driving system capable of eyes-off conditional autonomy.

The technology will be introduced in the brand's flagship model before eventually trickling down into lower segment vehicle, Ola Kaellenius, Daimler's head of research, told reporters at the Paris auto show last week. Kaellenius will succeed Dieter Zetsche as Daimler and Mercedes CEO in May 2019

"We are on the verge of jumping to Level 3, which is our target for the next S class," Kaellenius said. "That is something that you can then buy as an option, and you can proliferate it relatively quickly into higher volumes -- especially with a brand like Mercedes."

When asked whether Mercedes' technology would arrive before BMW comes to market in 2021 with its own Level 3 system planned for the iNext, Kaellenius indicated Mercedes would be first. "The next S class is due for 2020, so the timeframe should be realistic," he said.

Both Mercedes and BMW are behind Audi, which debuted the world’s first eyes-off Level 3 system in the new A8 sedan. The A8 has been equipped to begin offering the technology to customers as soon as Audi receives regulatory approval to sell the system. Regulators in the standards-setting body UNECE in Geneva continue to debate with carmakers the safety risks involved with the technology.

Currently all systems available on the market, including Tesla’s Autopilot and General Motor’s Super Cruise, are advanced versions of Level 2 assistance systems. Drivers cannot take their eyes off the road and must be prepared at all times to take back control of the vehicle. Level 3 systems also have limited use: only Germany has legalized motorists to transfer operation of the vehicle to the onboard computer.

Automakers are starting to get cold feet when it comes to the technology, with Volkswagen Group considering how to share the costs and the risks, both technical and legal, with other competitors.

Defensive Driving and autocross

July 20th

We have secured a lot for this event on July 20th, and are finalizing all the details, but wanted you to mark your calendar for this exciting and educational day!

If you’re not familiar with SDSF events, their focus is to help participants better understand car control and get experience with their car in a controlled environment so they can learn how to respond to emergencies on the road. Please check out the Driver’s Handbook, which is what a participant would receive on the day of the event and will give you a good idea of what the program entails.

A SDSF event spans one day and includes an hour of morning classroom instruction, the balance of the morning guiding drivers through car control exercises. An autocross is constructed, and practice and timed runs are conducted in the afternoon. The autocross allows drivers to put all the skills together that they practiced in the morning and further refine them.

This was an event highlight in 2017, and has saved some of us in real world scenarios. Please consider coming, even if you are hesitant, there is no more wear and tear to your car in this event, than driving it in our Drive and Dine events, or road rallies.

2019 Events

March: Dine and Drive to New Richmond and Cardboard Boat Museum Tour

April: Spring Classic Driving Tour

May: Mid Ohio Race Track (IMSA Races)

June 1st : AirStream Tour

June: Bourbon Tour

July: Defensive Driving Event

August: Indianapolis Vintage Racing

September: Lane Motor Museum, Nashville, TN

October: Central Region outing at French Lick, October 12 & 13th; Road Rally; Show & Shine

November: Tech Session

December: Holiday Party

Board meeting Minutes

Link to the Last board meeting minutes

Created By
Peter Emslander


Created with images by Antranias - "spring avenue trees" • Blake Wisz - "untitled image" • JG Photography - "untitled image" • Pexels - "auto autumn benz"

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