A place for everyone's driving story. - Mercedes-Benz Forum

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post #1 of 2 (permalink) Old 03-12-2006, 10:30 AM Thread Starter
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Date registered: Jan 2005
Vehicle: 2010 SLK 350
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A place for everyone's driving story.

Well, I felt like an idiot today.

So I was at Mercedes-Benz Downtown Toronto dealership today and I was given the opportunity to test drive an '06 CLK 350. What a beautiful car it was. I sat inside it and I was already impressed at all the initial gadgets and interior design. It was as beautiful inside as it was outside. I was still trying to figure out the new instrument cluster/dashboard and how to read some of the gauges, but more so I was eager to dish out the power concealed beneath the hood. The last CLK I drove was an '02 CLK 320 (This was only because my dad and his friend got wasted at one of our parties and I was the only other person in the house with a license, sober enough to drive him home in his own car. Best part about drunks is that they’re honest enough to tell me things they wouldn’t normally say as far as responsible adults go: “Go on feel the power!� “Kenneth I don’t think it’s a good idea…� “It’s ok, just push it! I do it all the time!�) and I just needed to feel the neck-breaking difference of this new and improved machine suited with much more testosterone.

I was let out on my own and as instructed, I proceeded to the nearest Freeway (DVP North) entrance on-ramp which happened to be a mere 5 seconds from the dealership's entrance. As I was making that left turn onto the freeway on-ramp, I was fiddling with the dash controls to try and figure out how much fuel I had left. I couldn't tell if it was completely full, or completely empty. It worried me a bit because the gauge was a completely solid colour. This could mean one of two things:

1) The car had just been completely refilled.
2) I fear the car is COMPLETELY empty.

That's when the message appeared on the display. “Reserve Tank - Visit Fueling Station.� I fiddled frantically to get to the Cruising Range menu to figure out exactly how much life was left in this baby. "Range: 0 km"
Uh, oh.

So what do you do when you're between exits and it tells you that any second now it may very well cut out?

You kick it to 2nd gear and let the tiptronic burn off the remainder of what fuel was left sitting in the tank like I did.

I was doing 120km/h in the middle lane frantically searching for a sign that said "Bayview/Bloor exit" without realizing that I slipped into the lowest gear possible and I was excessively burning the one resource that was most dear to me at that moment in time. Before I knew it, the engine cut out and I was a moving block. Friction was taking over and bringing me to a complete halt, while other vehicles were blitzing past me doing speeds well around what felt like 300km/h from my perspective (100km/h feels like nothing when you’re driving, but when you’re just an observer…that’s FAST). At first I thought maybe I somehow accidentally knocked the shifter into N, but that’s when I realized my fear had come true. So I hit the hazards instantly and as slowly and safely as possible I threw myself to the right shoulder. I didn't even have enough to toss myself completely on what turned out to be the smallest portion ever of a freeway shoulder. It's always a gamble with shoulder space on the freeway. Sometimes the shoulder has space to fit 2 18-wheelers and sometimes half a smart car won't even fit. In this case, I happened to lose the coin toss.

I was a sitting duck. Fortunately, less than a minute after I came to a complete halt, with a quarter of my beautiful rear-end jutting out on the freeway, a tow truck driver was nice enough to stop by and offer me aid. Nigel was my hero. He offered me his services and helped push me so that my car was completely off the freeway's collector lane. Although the dealership suggested I not take his aid, I still say he saved my @ss. (So if you’re ever in need of a tow truck driver in the downtown Toronto area, call Nigel at 416-368-4536) From there on it was a waiting game. I spent the next 25 minutes chillin' in the driver's seat scrolling between 103.5 and Flow 93.5. That's when I realized...what's worse than being stranded on a tiny little shoulder on the DVP with no gas by yourself in a vehicle that isn't even yours and that any minute a car could rear-end this vehicle that you can’t even afford to replace?

I know, maybe the battery will cut out too!

Don't worry that didn't happen. Everyone knows the mind wanders a little when you're sitting alone for extended periods of time with nothing to do. I mean, fuel runs out of cars all the time. People are hangin' out on freeway shoulders once in a while. You just don't expect it when your turn finally comes around. And when help doesn't come right away, you can't help but think of ridiculous things. (Especially when recent news tragedy stories related to this are still fresh in your mind.)

Anyways, in the end my sales rep came out with a container of gas and rescued me. Unfortunately he lost the funnel we needed to refill the car with. I love it when I'm pulled into James Bond scenarios. Fortunately Mercedes-Benz likes to give free bottles of water with their logo printed on it at their dealerships. And even more fortunately, I happen to be a greedy @sshole and always make sure there's one in my possession, whether or not I'm that thirsty. So we were able to camel the fuel into the car with my trusty Mercedes-Benz Bottled Water.

When I was finally up and running again, he was nice enough to offer me more test-drive time. After an incident like that, I really wasn't in the mood to throw myself in more unexpected situations in the day. I booked it straight back to the dealership and booked my @ss out of there!

Lesson of the day: Always grab a free bottle of Mercedes-Benz water.

Thanks for reading! Take care! [;)]

2010 SLK 350
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post #2 of 2 (permalink) Old 03-15-2006, 02:37 PM
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Date registered: May 2004
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RE: A place for everyone's driving story.

I have a place for my stories too, my show which is often recorded in the CLK.


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