Mercedes-Benz to Offer Driver’s Education

On Wednesday, Mercedes-Benz USA announced plans to introduce the Mercedes-Benz Driving Academy at the end of this year. The program is intended to teach teenage drivers the basics and more advanced lessons that, in an era of curtailed financing for public driver’s education, they might otherwise miss.

The Mercedes program combines interactive classroom work, online learning, substantial parental involvement, mandatory supervised practice and restrictions in accordance with state Graduated Driver Licensing laws.
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Toyota Announces the Plural of Prius

Toyota Motor Sales (TMS), USA, Inc. today announced that the general public has selected ‘Prii’ as the preferred plural term for Prius.

The Prius Goes Plural voting campaign was launched on January 10 at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit and challenged the public to help the automaker determine the plural nomenclature of Prius. The campaign coincided with the world premiere of the Toyota Prius family of vehicles. With 25 percent of the votes, Prii becomes the word not only endorsed by the public who chose it, but also as the term recognized by Toyota. As such, Dictionary.com has updated its entry for the word ‘Prius’ to reflect this.
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Penske Cuts Ties to Smart USA, Mercedes-Benz Steps In

Just four months after revealing production plans for a four-door vehicle intended for the North American market, Penske Automotive Group said it would relinquish control of Smart USA to Mercedes-Benz USA. The announcement was made in a jointly released statement on Monday. Under the terms of the deal, Mercedes would assume distribution, marketing, sales and management responsibilities in the second quarter of 2011.

Penske has held exclusive rights to sell the Smart Fortwo coupe and convertible since 2007. The company also began distributing a lease-only, purely electric Fortwo late last year. Under Penske, Smart USA sold more than 45,000 vehicles to American customers, and in 2010 delivered 5,927 units.
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For the US NCAP crash test as well: 5 stars for the BMW 5 Series.

By launching the new BMW 5 Series Sedan, the German premium automobile manufacturer is setting new standards not only in aesthetics and driving pleasure, but also in safety. This exceptional position has now found renewed and impressive testimony in the US NCAP crash test. The BMW 5 Series Sedan is the first vehicle that was awarded straight away the highest number of points, 5 stars, in the new and considerably more stringent test procedure of the US National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). The same number of points had already been awarded previously to this four door model in the Euro NCAP crash test. Moreover, the BMW 5 Series Sedan ranks among the first winners in Europe that Euro NCAP experts have honoured in addition with a special award, in recognition of its Assist Advanced eCall, an advanced emergency call system with automatic localisation and accident severity detection. In the USA too, the new BMW 5 Series received yet another honour for outstanding passenger protection: the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) voted it the Top Safety Pick on the strength of its top grades in all test categories.

This double award of 5 stars and the additional honours all reflect the outstandingly high safety level of the new BMW 5 Series Sedan that will be meeting the complex requirements on the international autombile markets. As a global provider of premium cars, BMW develops for all of its models fully integrated safety concepts that are not optimised solely for specific test procedures, but whose safety scope and quality provide the basis for excellent results in all relevant crash tests throughout the world. This ensures the maximum of protection not only for the dummy in the laboratory, but also for the vehicle’s occupants in actual traffic conditions when a critical situation arises or a collision is unavoidable.
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Audi A4 and Q5 models earn Insurance Institute TOP SAFETY PICK rating in the USA

The renowned Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) in the USA has awarded both the Audi Q5 and Audi A4 models its 2010 TOP SAFETY PICK rating. These two models join the Audi A3 in achieving the highest safety recognition granted by the influential IIHS. Audi now offers more vehicles on the US market with the TOP SAFETY PICK rating than any German luxury automaker.

The IIHS regularly carries out crash tests on behalf of the US insurance industry on passenger vehicles of all kinds to establish their safety standard. Experts and car buyers alike around the world pay close attention to the results. TOP SAFETY PICK recognizes the vehicles that earn the highest rating of “good” for front, side and rear crash protection, and that have electronic stability control, which is standard on all of these models.

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