Finance bros and octane-fuelled car nuts are the usual crowds at a track day, powered by the bravado of ego-enhancing talk about who’s got the bigger… engine. But that’s not the case at Mercedes-Benz World, a monolithic museum housing everything from Palace’s Mercedes-AMG collaboration to dissected Formula 1 race cars and some of the marque’s most iconic machines, as well as a race track and dirt course to boot.
With the Mercedes-AMG C63 S Estate at Hypebeast’s disposal, it was expected that we were about to have a good time. But instead of having fun, Mercedes-Benz World spent time honing one’s craft, pairing us with a dedicated driver to teach you how to expertly operate its V8 family wagon on a handling circuit, drag strip, and skid pad that replicated black ice.
The experience enables the driver to test out their skills before being given a tutorial on how to perfect your turn-ins, power-outs, braking, balance, speed and accuracy with every lap. Such precision makes you feel like a racing driver by the end of your stint, but the purpose of all of this goes beyond the track.
For example, Hypebeast was also shown to an off-roading course in a Mercedes-Benz G-Class G400. What at first seemed like dirt tracks soon proved to challenge even the most advanced driver, but nothing felt too impossible with a G-Class pushing forward. Concaving and twisting dips and dives met wade-worthy rivers and almost right-angle-like slopes for an off-roading experience that, in most situations, is much more aggressive than anything most G-Class drivers will ever put their SUV through – but it did go to show the capabilities of the machine.
Mercedes-Benz World’s automotive experiences are designed to put the driver through their paces and showcase the manufacturer’s expertise and craftsmanship. The C63 S, for example, comfortably sits five adults and can carry the family dog in the boot, but with race mode engaged, the car’s V8 is fired into life, working in tandem with its performance brakes and suspension. From meandering curves to tight turns, the car copes without flaw, yet too much power on the exit almost guarantees power slides. While this is fun, it is not conducive to a good lap time, and this is the purpose of Mercedes-Benz World’s track day – to make you a better driver.
It’s translated off the track too, as drag strips come with lessons in emergency stops and the skid pan emulates the lack of traction a rear-wheel-drive car might have in icy or rainy conditions – not too far off real-life scenarios.
If you’re looking for a dose of petrol-powered pleasure, or perhaps you fancy trying your hand as some outlandish off-roading, Mercedes-Benz World has a number of programs for you to choose from. Take a look at some of Hypebeast’s antics above, and find out more on Mercedes-Benz’s website.