My car is my castle… Merc’s E- and S-Guard protects against anything from hand guns to hand grenades. And it can sprint away from the scene of attack, too.
Saw a documentary on Pablo Escobar the other night, which made me wonder: how would you like to be in a car riddled with enough bullet holes to embarrass Don Corleone, Sammy the Bull and John Gotti in one go? Well, it pretty much sounds like the end of the road to me. You’d be cut up in so many pieces that Corleone and his cronies wouldn’t even bother with a concrete block around your ankles. Staying alive, on the other hand, is an art Mercedes-Benz specialises in, and not only through crash safety, but also via MB Guard – an umbrella term for different levels of automotive protection, covering anything from 9mm bullets to hand grenade attacks.
It’s the perfect antidote to gunfire dished out by the Mafia, Hamas or Al Qaeda. Even Timothy McVeigh would have a tough time dislodging you from a VIP Benz seat, while you’re puffing away on Fidel Castro’s best. That is, if you’re protected by Stuttgart’s heaviest armour, called S-Guard, which operates at VR6 and VR7 levels of defence. E-Guard, on the other hand, works its way up from VR4 to VR5, protecting Merc E-Class occupants via a steel ring plus strengthened glass circling the car’s passenger cell. Without it, a .44-magnum bullet would be stopped by the last door of four E-Classes parked side-by-side.
With it, you’ll give your assailants a middle finger salute and drive off. If, however, the attack is a little bit more robust – with heavy calibre military rifles or hand grenades – you should skip the bulletproof vest and put S-Guard VR6/7 on your shopping list. We’re talking an extra-strength passenger cell with extreme shatterproof glass, plus a steel floor and roof, the latter alone adding 220kg on the scales. That’s the weight of two Springbok props. Side windows 80mm thick add a lusty 80kg each – or 320kg altogether.
That’s the weight of two Springbok props plus a hooker (of the rugby variety). Add fi re extinguishers, massive mechanical strengthening of chassis and driveline components, state-of-the-art communications to keep in touch with the outside world and oxygen canisters to feed the lungs when all car vents have been shut down during a poison gas attack, and the S-Class balloons from 1.9 to 3.8 tons. Yet, the biggest trick is not to neutralise external assaults, no.
The biggest trick is to control the enemy from within. The vacuum, see, created by big explosions has a nasty habit of ripping lungs apart. VR6/7 will counter this, as well. And reducing hand grenade attacks to powder puff or stopping machine gun fi re like Springbok props stop Albanian scrumhalves is all part of the package. Do not, however, roll down the window at that point to dismissively flick cigar ashes in the enemy’s direction; the air might still be toxic.
First instruct James to whip up Merc’s mighty V12 (380 kW, 830 Nm) to full throttle and clear the scene, which should be done pretty quickly, even on flat tyres; the big Merc’s killer body of nigh on four tons steams from 0-100 km/h in a mere 6.7 seconds! Killer body? Those beefed-up Benzes look pretty normal. And yep, for something in the region of two and six million green ones, they’ll keep killers at bay, too. So, bring ’em on, I say. Go ahead, Pablo. Make my day. Punk.
To see what the E-Guard is capable of, check out this video:
By Egmont Sippel
Published by Playboy SA January 2012