The far-fetched dream of roaming pedal-to-themetal across states can finally be realised now that the nation is on the move once again. A road trip is a journey that can be as gratifying as the destination you are headed to, especially if your port of call is the ultra-luxe One&Only Desaru Coast in Johor. A classic Kerry Hill design in essence, the resort — the only outpost of the hospitality brand in Southeast Asia — rewards city slickers with a piece of rainforest paradise that melds nature and architectural brilliance.
While pretty much any running automobile can transport you to your goal, few will glide you there as if you were royalty. For nimble responsiveness to anything the road throws at you or the romance of seeing the country with the wind blowing through your hair, you only need to lean into the power of German engineering.
A select group of guests were able to experience the prowess of the marque up-close at the “Circle of Excellence”, an exclusive event co-hosted by The Edge and Mercedes-Benz Malaysia held at the tropical retreat. Villa One — a secluded four-bedroom mansion with a 27m private pool set apart from the main resort — played host to the carmaker’s slew of new releases.
The welcome champagne was not the only thing that set our hearts aflutter: The glowing silhouettes and stunning presence of Mercedes-Benz’s GLE 450 4Matic AMG Line and E 300 AMG Line Coupe — outlined by a blazing sunset — immediately turned heads and added to the resort’s exoticism. Guests were charmed by the locally assembled sevenseater SUV, which still boasts the best-in-class assists. Paired with a 9G-Tronic nine-speed automatic transmission, the car comes with an extended Dynamic Select transmission mode and incorporates the latest developments in the air suspension system AIRMATIC.
On the other hand, the E 300 AMG Line Coupe sports a clear sensual design, elevated with intuitive new technology and a new look that makes it an outstanding representative in the Mercedes-Benz dream cars collection. Driving enthusiasts would agree that adventure is a leap beyond mere travel.
For off-the-beaten track lovers who seek places only few would dare venture to, a G 350 d AMG Line — powered by an OM656 3.0li inline-six cylinder turbodiesel with two-stage turbocharging — was also on display to give them a taste. Michael Jopp, vice-president of marketing and sales at Mercedes-Benz Malaysia, closed the evening with a rousing speech on the future of the automotive industry and the plans that the brand has for the local market, as guests revelled in an evening fuelled by live music, cheer and fresh bounty from the sea.
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This article first appeared on Oct 25, 2021 in The Edge Malaysia.