At the inauguration of the Mercedes driving academy at the Buddh International Circuit on Wednesday, one man was quite bemused at suggestions that the setup would groom race drivers of the future.
“For us this is an initiative to connect with our customers and give them a chance to see the potential of their cars.
“It is also an effort to teach them how to be safe in their super cars. To groom drivers we would have to start karting!" said Guido Brormann, market manager of the company for South East Asia, the Middle East and Africa.
High end school
Instructors from the AMG (the company's performance car brand) driving academy put a bunch of journalists through a truncated version of the actual course, which will be available for a cost of Rs 75,000 for one day's coaching. Mercedes owners get the same for Rs 50,000.
Given the number of big cars that populate roads in the National Capital Region, Mercedes target of getting 64 people over a year in batches of eight should not be too much of a problem.
After all, if people can spend over Rs 20 lakh to buy these machines, a mere Rs 75,000 to learn how to harness them should not be an issue. Furthermore, there is also the lure of driving on a circuit that has hosted the inaugural Formula One Indian Grand Prix and looks set to become the country’s new motorsports hub in years to come.