“Is that all?” I asked jokingly amidst the bright lighting and long tables laid out before me in the paddock lounge of Sepang International Circuit.
It was dinner time and Mark Raine, Vice-President for Passenger Cars of Mercedes-Benz Malaysia having just launched three AMG 63 SUV models – GLC 63, GLC 63 Coupe, and G 63 – replied my question in mild admonishment.
“Oh, come on, Kon. It’s been a crazy year for us,” he pleaded, before spewing what effectively was the credit roll of launches that Mercedes-Benz Malaysia had mustered over the course of 2018, and it was an impressive list to be sure (see side bar).
And it was also more than the fact that these cars were at all launched, but the occasion that accompanied each of them. Many cars in recent years have been released to the market in what we call ‘press release’ launches – just an email with pictures and info about the car saying it is now on sale, order books are open.
Not Mercedes. Each of the cars listed in the sidebar were unveiled at a press event. Sometimes, they coincided with other agendas, such as the AMG E 53s showed during a sales performance briefing; sometimes, it’s several cars at once, such as the new CLS being unveiled alongside the AMG GT C and E 300 Cabrio.