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Self-driving Merc returns to Chapman’s Peak to beat the bends in stirring new ad

Look, Ma! No hands!

Every week The Money Show’s Bruce Whitfield asks branding and advertising expert Andy Rice to share with him the week’s advertising “heroes” or “zeroes”.

This week, Rice critiqued a stirring new Mercedes-Benz advertisement which he gave a “hero” rating.

In 1988 Mercedes-Benz ran a TV campaign in which it recounted the remarkable survival of Christopher White who plunged 100 metres down Cape Town’s Chapman’s Peak Drive in his Mercedes.

White survived - so the ad implied - because he was wearing his seatbelt and driving a Benz.

In a brand-new ad, White returns to Chapman’s Peak Drive, this time behind the wheel of a self-driving S-Class.

For White‚ Chapman’s Peak was a place of horror. We asked him to revisit it‚ to drive it again‚ but this time to let our car drive him. His fear‚ his trepidation‚ his emotions‚ are evident to start with. It’s heart-wrenching. But then you see him relax. You see the wonder on his face. You see the future of driving.

Selvin Govender, Mercedes-Benz South Africa

The advertisement won gold at the London International Awards.

Watch the ad below and/or scroll down to listen to the interview.

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