Tag Archives: Mercedes-Benz

The Italians are Coming – And so are the Americans, the Germans, the Brits, all to Virginia this Fall for the 1000 Miglia Warm Up USA

Watch our YouTube Video on the 1000 Miglia Warm Up USA.

Emanuele Manzitti of the Italian Embassy, Franco Gussalli Beretta, 1000 Miglia President , Francesca Parolin, 1000 Miglia General Manager, and Mark Gessler at the Italian Embassy in Washington DC.

The presentation of the second American edition of the 1000 Miglia Warm Up USA was held this morning (April 26, 2019) at the Italian Embassy in Washington DC. Italian Ambassador Armando Varricchio, together with Mille Miglia President Franco Gussalli Beretta, announced: “We started a journey. Today we consolidate this tradition that is part of the sporting and cultural fabric of Italy that for centuries has made beauty, style, creativity and passion for life one of its characteristic traits. I am sure that the 2019 edition will be as successful as the 2018 edition and will contribute to consolidating a prestigious image of our country in the USA”.


Goals of the 1000 Miglia Warm Up USA

20190426_121217The aim of the 1000 Miglia Warm Up USA is to involve the participants in a compelling sporting experience in the “Spirit of 1000 Miglia,” This the 2nd American event is reserved for 40 historic cars that meet the eligibility requirements for 1000 Miglia and a limited number of Supercars. Newbies to the race will be offered the opportunity of real “Warm Up” dedicated to those who, not knowing much about 1000 Miglia, will have an overview of the rules and activities that characterize the participation in the most beautiful race in the world. During the four day event, the participating cars will travel 800 miles through some of the most evocative and iconic areas of Virginia, Pennsylvania, and Maryland to then reach the heart of Washington DC. Ending on Italian soil with the award ceremony hosted at the Ambassador’s residence Villa Firenze in Rock Creek Park.


Why is the Mille Miglia Coming to the USA?

Blue 1968 Ferrari GTC and Red Alfa Romero on display at the Italian Embassy in Washington DC.
Blue 1968 Ferrari GTC and Red Alfa Romero on display at the Italian Embassy in Washington DC.

The event is managed by the Italian Government and is designed to show off the best of the Italian culture to the world through this iconic road rally. While historic rallying cars are just one part of the event, engaging in the historic culture of Italy is the main reason.  Bringing it to America, as well as other countries gives others a chance to enjoy the excitement and charm of the Mille Miglia.


MM Alfa“The international development of our brand – declared Franco Gussalli Beretta, President of 1000 Miglia Srl – must involve the United States, one of the first and most important countries in the world for the presence of cars of great historical value and it is a great honor, for 1000 Miglia and me, to be here alongside Ambassador Varricchio confirming the inseparable bond between 1000 Miglia and Italy and to present the second edition of 1000 Miglia Warm Up USA. We look forward to involving the participating crews, the fans, and enthusiasts in a week of training and getting to know all the rules, the particulars and the emotions that they can experience when they participate in 1000 Miglia that takes place every year in Italy in May. Finally, I would like to thank Chopard and Alfa Romeo, who has been by our side for many years and who have chosen to support us in this project as well.”


Plans for the 2019 Virginia Event

1000 Miglia Warm Up USA 2019 Virginia Route Map
1000 Miglia Warm Up USA proposed 2019 Virginia Route Map

Car and driver teams will be invited to apply, and entries will be submitted for review through the summer. In early September an announcement will be made as to the 40 historic cars and handful of supercars accepted.  The group will gather at the Salamander Resort in the Virginia Horse Country’s quaint village of Middleburg VA. From there they will spend four days broken into a day of training and three days of rallying to points as far north as Fallingwater, Frank Lloyd Wright’s architectural gem in Western Pennsylvania and to the south to Monticello in Charlottesville VA. Trekking over picturesque back roads and the historic Skyline Drive. Ending their rally in Washington DC.

For detailed information on the 1000 Miglia Warm Up USA click here.

WWH and MM photographing historic cars at the Italian Embassy in Washington DC like the blue 1968 Ferrari GTC
WWH and MM photographing historic cars at the Italian Embassy in Washington DC
Word by William West Hopper | Images by Marco Marinucci, 1000 Miglia

Mercedes-Benz C-Class Coupe, An Impressive Miniature S-Class, In A Smaller Size.

Mercedes Benz C Coupe Little Library
2017 Mercedes-Benz C-Class Coupe is elegant and full of technology and safety features.

At first look, you will do a double take: Is this Mercedes-Benz’s top-of-the-line luxury coupe? The lines flow elegantly from the hood to the trunk, Check! The long hood and sloping roof line, Check!  Muscular rear haunches and slippery, sexy looking trunk, Check!

The diamond grill has become a Mercedes-Benz favorite.
2017 Mercedes-Benz C-Class Coupe is elegant and full of technology and safety features.

The 2017 C-Class Coupe is similar to the full size S-Class Coupe, but with more approachable proportions. The diamond grill, which became popular with the entry-level CLA,  is the key design feature that differentiates the two.



Mercedes-Benz hopes that a coupe version of it’s biggest selling model, the mass-market C-Class, will appeal to a wider audience, a younger audience, one not needing extra doors, but still looking for all the safety, technology, and great design that the brand is so well-known for.

The C-Coupe Sunroof slides out and over the top.
2017 Mercedes-Benz C-Class Coupe is elegant and full of technology and safety features.

While the US government classifies the C-Coupe as a sub-compact, is four inches longer, and three inches wider than the previous generation. While the exterior of this high-strength, steel-reinforced cabin, complete with a panoramic sunroof, is impressive, it is inside where the driver and passenger benefit most. Similar to the sedan, the coupe has touches that are different. The sound system’s speakers are built into the frame for more bass. Sportier high-back seats feature extendable thigh support, so no matter your height, you are comfortable on long drives in the coupe.The iconic seat belt extenders, once a hallmark of the classic full size S-Coupe, the SEC, hand you your seat belt. Cup holders that will hold 1 liter bottles are larger than before. The dashboard is still round gauges, not flat screens like the S-Coupe.

Mercedes Benz C Coupe Sport Plus
Round gauges for the C-Coupe dash.

The center instrument stack provide easy reach to controls for the radio and HVAC. Keyless start and Mbrace are standard. Optional features are many: Heads up display, Burmeister premium surround sound, and Air Balance (just like the S-Coupe), as well as a number of premium packages.


Mercedes Benz C Coupe Guage
Plenty of technology in the C-Class Coupe.

Performance is impressive for

a 2.0 liter 4-cylinder turbo charged engine, with 241 HP, 273 LP torque, mated to a 7G-Tronic 7-speed automatic transmission with DYNAMIC SELECT provides a 5.9 seconds zero to 60 time. Select one of the multiple settings (Eco, Comfort Sport, Sport Plus and Independent,) to adjust engine, steering, and transmission to fit your driving style. While rear-wheel drive is standard, there is a 4MATIC All-Wheel Drive (a $2K option,) that provides additional traction and peace of mind in areas that experience inclement weather. I was pleased with the 28 miles per gallon the 4MATIC equipped model I drove during two days in a mix of city, suburban, and highway driving.


Mercedes Benz C Coupe racing
The Mercedes-Benz 4MATIC C-Coupe moves out on all surfaces.

Nimble handling, a hallmark of the

C-Class. While the ride is tight with the standard sport suspension, if you want more control of the softness or sportiness of the ride, order the optional AIRMATIC Air suspension (a $1200 option,.) Eighteen inch wheels are standard, or chose the optional 19” AMG rims. You can also customize the coupe’s appearance with a number of optional packages.


Mercedes Benz C Coupe Shilling Beer
The C-Coupe is a handsome ride.

Advanced technology is what the new C-Coupe is all about, providing added safety to the equation in the long list of standard equipment. In addition to the normal Anti lock Brakes, Mercedes-Benz provides Brake Assist System®, Electronic Stability Program®, Attention Assist®, Collision Prevention Assist ®, Pres-Safe, and Adaptive Brake technology. The C-Coupe has LED headlights, daytime running lights and tail lamps as standard. Rear view camera options including surround view, are available. DISTRONIC PLUS with steering assist, lane keep, and speed limit assist, blind spot and pre-safe can all be added to the mix.


For those wanting a drop top or more power, wait until this Fall when the C-Coupe Cabriolet, a C43, and a C63 Coupe with a wide-body option become available. Unlike the C-Class Sedan, the C-Coupe, as well as its engine and transmission is made in the German assembly plants. (The US-sold sedan is made here in the award winning, world-class Alabama factory.) With the C-Coupe, you can take European delivery, which offers the added advantage of a few days in Europe and a chance to experience Mercedes-Benz’s delivery center.



Mercedes Benz C Coupe Front back
C-Coupe looks good front and rear.

Again Mercedes-Benz provides a

strong value in the ownership of their vehicles. The only downside that I can see is that the $42,600 base price can elevate quickly with a few desirable options to a $60K plus price tag. While the past two generations of C-Coupes have failed to generate market buzz, this one surely will with its elegant and sporty design, as well as a complete cadre of safety features.

The 2017 Mercedes-Benz C-Class Coupe with author William West Hopper
The 2017 Mercedes-Benz C-Class Coupe with author William West Hopper

Photos and article by:      William West Hopper