A man walks into a bierhalle… hilarity ensues.
The English language can be difficult enough to understand for those born to it – what chance the hapless non-native speaker dicing with the contrafibularities of cultural differences? How perfidious, Albion.
Comedy is a difficult mare to ride – relevance at risk to hosts of material becoming lost in translation. Anglophile German comedian, Henning Wehn, by example, once extoled upon the difficulties of learning such English idiosyncratic words as Gubbins (meaning possessions or the antecedent to ‘thing-y’). Contrary to that hackneyed old saw, our German friends are not only adept at comedy, they can also mine that more difficult vein of irony for good measure, as a (fairly) recent trawl through AutoCropley laid abundantly and amusingly bare.
In no particular order, since comedy can be dark just as well as light hearted, we look to our Stuttgart stooges, Mercedes-Benz and their G-Wagen. Well, not directly, since the German tuning firm, Posaidon (their spelling) have deemed it necessary to up the Gelandewagen’s engine output, considerably. My face cheeks bulge thinking of the average purchaser of such a vehicle (footballer or aggressive ice-hockey ‘keeper, perhaps) not caring one iota for fuel consumption, emission or vulgarity.
Don’t get me wrong, I like the G for all its many wrong reasons and such a car does turn heads. Posaidon however, wishes to twist yours off your shoulders with 927 bhp along with 943 newton metres. The engine has a water tank laced with methanol for such heady gains, handy for transporting your jet ski to the weekend lakeside retreat and once finished in the water, up that particularly tricky gravel path to your waterside chalet.
One can only imagine that Posaidon have a bevy of freshly minted expectant purchasers (closed Sunday’s) wishing to out G an MB AMG G63 whilst laughing all the way to the (Swiss?) bank. Meanwhile, these Sheffield steely greys would prefer to see a wolf in sheep’s clothing, not the snarling, salivating lupine beast itself.
Remaining with Mercedes-Benz, pictures have recently circulated of a camouflaged One, track testing. This much hyped mid-engined hyper-car with 1000bhp (don’t tell Posaidon!) that retails for €2.27 Million (sorry – all 275 sold) and that frankly inadmissible moniker. Was that the best you could do, your Gorden-ness? The One? With its Formula One technology and stratospheric collectible status for the over inflated wealthy, I can hear the conversation now. What’s that new car in the paddock, Wolfgang? Why, an M-B One, Konrad.
For those uninterested (or blinded by tears of laughter at the cost), that name could easily be mistaken for a small pug-nosed hatchback with something more Bavarian about it. Were no Classical Greek or Romans referenced? No rare Amazonian beast, or desert wind modern, even a tech-based approach would have been preferable. Being the foremost number naturally implies importance, but lend this mythical beast a more appropriate adjective or park that One in a cul-de-sac.
To the darker side of comedy now, for I see ranks and rows of grown adults sounding like schoolchildren, baying Told You So! This swelling tide of indignation flows toward the relaunching of that grand old name of Borgward. Hampered no doubt by the global pandemic, the Chinese firm Foton (good name for a fast Merc…) sold out to compatriot car rental outfit, Ucar for $614 Million.
Ucar’s chief shareholder has not helped matters by being investigated over accountancy issues. Still being sold in Europe in the one and only Borgward outlet, based in Luxembourg, more than 100 BX5 and 7’s have been sold since 2018. But that’s a far cry from the early predictions given at a global 800,000. For Borgward, it’s all gone a bit Pete Tong.
And with one’s tongue stapled firmly to the inside of one face cheek, we head on over to Schwäbisch-Gmund and manufacturer, Binz. Once upon a time, Binz would supply you with an estate car when Mercedes considered such matters the height of decadence. Nowadays, Binz have chosen the (seemingly) less frequented (cinder) path of the electrified hearse using an extended Tesla Model S as the base for its netherworldly cargo, in keeping with a growing trend towards environmentally aware funerals.
Doubtful the 0-60 time will ever be troubled, the silence and solemnity of the situation may be awkwardly altered should one hear the dearly departed giggling at the unexpected trip to the charging station: more tea, vicar? That eventuality is not to be expected as the Binz E hearse has a range of 220 miles whereas British rival (but German sounding) rival Brahms Electric Vehicles also offer an extended Tesla but a range of but 200.
A Brahms Tesla sets you back £140,000 (starting price) but also offer altered Nissan Leaf’s for the cheap seats to your final journey. Both Binz and Brahms offer the Tesla app with smartphone use but my flabber has never been quite so gasted as to what exactly for. Surely even Mr Musk can not contact the dead? Or could that be his next venture once Earth and space have been well and truly Tesla’d?
Goodness me, next thing you’ll be telling me a German made Claas tractor has been driven round the Nürburgring – backwards at top speed. Hang on… For those with half an hour’s leisure time to spend, leaving you wondering why…