This might come as a surprise to you but Hollywood has fooled us. It’s fooled us into thinking that a dystopian wasteland of a future lays waiting for us at the hand of computers. Yes, that very device that you are reading this on is apparently plotting your demise. That cute little smart device that tells you the weather, the traffic conditions and more importantly, what Kim Kardashian is wearing today. Surely, that’s not a device with any ill intent? The problem lies mainly with a series of Sci-Fi writers who could think of nothing better to do with their time than take pot shots at technology.
The Terminator franchise then took the ball and ran with it, and ever since then robots, mainframes, networks and artificial intelligence has had some serious PR issues. Luckily, my formative years had an education about integrated technology that allows me to see through this rouse. This education mainly came in the form of The Jetsons cartoon but they had it exactly right. That cartoon portrayed a future where technology was there to help. And this is what is unfolding. Can you imagine your job without email, Google and a mobile phone? Can you imagine your TV without a remote? Can you imagine your lounge without a TV, in-fact? So my point is that technology is our friend.
And that’s exactly the feeling I get from driving the Mercedes-Benz C 300 Coupe. It might look like a car but it’s really a very friendly German robot named, Sigfrid. Well, it’s not really but that’s my nickname for it. The reality is that you can’t drive the Mercedes-Benz C 300 without forming a bond with it. The car is so jam-packed with technology, it would make a Google datacentre blush. And I’m not just talking about the incredibly cool stuff like Mercedes-Benz’s COMAND infotainment system and a suite of smartphone-compatible apps that is all there but the sort of technology that could actually save your life. Yes, in this case, technology really, really wants us to survive. If you start drifting off your lane by mistake, the C 300’s Lane Assist technology will give you a little bit of a judder to wake you up and it will guide you back into your lane. It’s seriously amazing. And when it occasionally happens to me, I imagine that “Sigfrid” is giving me a gentle tap on the wrist while leading me back to safety.
The C 300 will even keep an eye on you for signs of fatigue with its Standard Attention Assist. It will even warn you when things aren’t looking so good with your impending situation with Collision Prevention Assist Plus which includes semi-autonomous braking. I can see why they didn’t feel the need to get too fancy with the name of that feature – it kind of sells itself.
The crazy thing is that I’m only scratching the surface of the technology here but if I go on too much it becomes just a whole lot of terms. To really understand the human/technology power of the C 300, you have to experience it. It is an experience of the future and that future is awesome. You’ll just have to come up with another nickname – “Sigfrid” is taken.