Mercedes promotes technology

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DETROIT (AP) – Mercedes-Benz continues to promote diesel technology with the presentation of its Bluetec engine. The DaimlerChrysler AG division says Bluetec will prove that large, powerful vehicles can offer economical fuel consumption and low emissions.

The Vision GL420 Bluetec concept was introduced Sunday by DaimlerChrysler CEO Dieter Zetsche at the North American International Auto Show. The vehicle has an assertive look complemented by flared fenders, 21-inch (53-centimeter) wheels and running boards.The V8 diesel engine offers 24 miles per gallon (38 kilometers per 3.7 liters).

Mercedes-Benz also is expanding its all-wheel-drive lineup; the company now offers 48 models worldwide with permanent all-wheel drive. The new flagship S-Class features superb traction, comfort and good fuel economy, said Zetsche, who referenced the Dernburg car of 1907 to reinforce the company’s tradition of offering all-wheel-drive cars.

“Dancing with the Stars” winners Emmitt Smith and Cheryl Burke helped Zetsche introduce the Mercedes-Benz Ocean Drive four-door convertible concept.

The luxury car invokes the classic roadster days of driving with the top down along the shoreline.

The Ocean Drive, based on the Mercedes-Benz S600 12-cyclinder platform, has a dominant radiator grille, two-tone paint, downward-sloping lines and a V-shaped front end.

The interior features leather and maple trim panels. Located between the seats is a champagne compartment for one bottle and two goblets.

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