Home' Greymouth Star : February 3rd 2017 Contents Greymouth Star
Friday, February 3, 2017 - 7
n the premium luxury
car market few other
vehicles make the powerful
statement like a well-styled
and elegant-looking two-
This model provides car
manufacturers with an opportunity
to showcase their creative talents
in a car that can also return them
a tidy profit. People will in many
cases, pay handsomely for a coupe
with the right styling ingredients
and that all-important “feel good”
factor. It is the kind of vehicle
people buy to reward themselves
for their hard-earned success. This
makes coupes a more personal
vehicle to their owners than most,
not just a reliable and functional
appliance to travel around in,
but one with which there is real
A lot of luxury car markets,
especially those from Europe,
have honed their coupe-building
craft over many decades. Some
do it better than others, among
them Mercedes Benz, which
has produced some genuinely
outstanding models which have
gone on to become classics and
collectibles. Many of their coupe
offerings have not achieved that
level of greatness, but are still
highly desirable. Among the latest
to fall into that category is the new
It holds the mantle as one of the
sportiest members of the popular
Mercedes Benz C-Class collection,
facing off with its rivals with a
striking front section featuring the
company ’s distinctive diamond
radiator grille. Airmatic air
suspension is fitted on all except
the high performance AMG
model, ensuring a cosseted ride. It
has a wheelbase 80mm longer than
the outgoing model and is bigger
in all the directions with a 95mm
increase in length and 40mm wider
overall. This expansion exercise
brings improved shoulder, elbow
and headroom in all seats, making
it one the roomier coupes in the
compact luxury car market.
The five-model range caters well
for the limited pool of buyers in
this country for prestige coupes.
At $77,400 the entry-level C200
coupe has plenty of appeal, not the
least of which is a sharpish price
and lively two-litre four-cylinder
135KW turbocharged engine. It
is a well-appointed vehicle for
an entry-level offering. Features
include 18-inch alloys, sports
suspension LED high performance
headlights and satellite navigation.
Next rung up the ladder and
its $16,000 step, is the $93900
C 250d featuring Mercedes’s
latest nine-speed auto offering
150KW of power from a 2.1-litre
turbocharged diesel engine.
Among the additional kit over
the standard C 200 are larger
19-inch alloys, leather seating
and Keyless-Go with hands free
access to the vehicle. The $97,900
C300 supplied for this road test is
probably the best all-rounder with
its 180KW four-cylinder petrol
Features over and above the
two models mentioned include
Command on-line navigation
and sports exhaust system. Both
the petrol and diesel engines have
ECO start-stop technology and
meet Euro 6 emissions standards.
For those wanting something
totally over the top there is the
$172,900 4.0L V8 bi-turbo
engine powered and insanely rapid
375KW AMG C 63 S Coupe.
According to Mercedes Benz
figures, it obliterates the 0-100kph
mark in just 3.9 seconds, making it
among the quickest sub-$200,000
cars in the world.
The 180KW two-litre
turbocharged petrol is responsive,
refined and works a treat in the
C300 with its deft balance of
performance and excellent fuel
economy, all delivered consistently
in real world driving. It may
have been designed and built on
the other side of the world, yet
this engine feels right at home,
grappling with the challenges of
our roads and conditions. The
engine delivers seamless power
and its purposeful mid rev range
acceleration creates a deceptively
quick car. There was not the
slightest hint of any turbo lag
that still blights some modern
Mercedes’ proven seven-speed
automatic has been around for
nearly a decade and still delivers
flawless gear changes. With nine
and even 10-speed automatics
becoming more common, this
transmission is still very much on
the pace, drawing out the engines
full performance potential.
The new multimedia set up with
its intuitive controls with visual
animations and effects adds to the
intrigue of the C300. There is a lot
to like about the sound system that
cleverly uses the space within the
cross-member and side member in
the body structure as a resonance
chamber for the bass speakers.
Exceptional is a word that
probably under sells the bevvy of
leading edge safety technology
aboard this vehicle with nine
airbags, semi-autonomous braking,
blind spot assist and a 360-degree
camera providing a helicopter
view of the vehicle. Lightweight
construction with extensive use of
aluminum gives the model a far
trimmer kerb weight than the one
it replaces. Light alloy components
include the bonnet and boot lid.
The body is much stiffer and
stronger thanks to the use of
high-strength materials, enhancing
driving dynamics, crash safety and
reducing noise levels.
A new four-link front axle with
wheel suspension decoupled from
the spring strut gives the car a real
handling edge. Nicely weighted
and reactive steering provides
genuine fluency to the way the
car drives. Ride quality hits the
spot with its ability to smooth
and soothe the car over the best
and worst of our roads. Handling
is everything and more than you
would expect from a Mercedes
coupe, proving agile, composed
under pressure, and quickly
winning the driver ’s confidence
with its formidable levels of grip.
This is one of those rare cars with
driving dynamics as exciting as its
dashing good looks.
Mercedes C-Class the real deal
Build quality: 9
not rated yet; on-
road test average
Value for money: 6
crash rating, not rated
Overall points out of
Rating out of 10
The Mercedes Benz C-Class coupe.
with Bob Nettleton
A 10-year-old Auckland student ’s
tragic death may be one of at least eight
such deaths during the past two years.
The Massey Primary School pupil died
on Friday last week, and the tragedy is
one of two deaths of young girls being
investigated by the coroner.
Police said there were no suspicious
circumstances in the 10-year-old’s death,
but said it was “an absolute tragedy”.
A nine-year-old girl, understood
to be from Kaitaia, died in similar
circumstances early last month at
Auckland’s Starship Children’s Hospital.
Towards the end of last year the
Northland town endured a spate of
Five young males aged between 17 and
25 died during a 12-week period, with
six in total under 25 since mid-May.
Ministry of Education head of sector
enablement and support Katrina Casey
said the ministry has been supporting
Massey Primary School after the death
during the school holidays.
“A traumatic incident team met the
school’s management team on Monday,”
“A counsellor and the principal of
Massey High also attended. A plan has
been developed and students and staff
who may need extra support identified.
“Massey High staff will support the
primary school this week before high
school students start on Thursday.
She said the ministry is also working
with Child Youth and Family and others
to ensure the right support is in place for
the schools and community.
According to the latest coroner’s figures
on suicide, released last year, there were
eight provisional suicide deaths for
people aged 10 to 14 between July 2014
and June 2016.
The number included five males and
three females, but accounted for the
lowest rate (2.72) of suicide per 100,000
people for any age group during the time
period, statistics show.
Figures released in September 2012 by
the coroner showed a child aged between
five and nine had committed suicide.
The child was the youngest recorded
suicide since the Coronial Ser vices Unit
started collecting data in 2007.
This week, clinical child and adolescent
psychologist Dr Sarah Watson advised
parents to listen if their child was in
distress and to take their concerns
“ Take the time to really listen . . . (and
for harmful thoughts or behaviour) that
arise out of distress. You want to be
talking about the reasons for the distress
and what to do about it.
“Help them find hope,” she said.
— NZ ME-New Zealand Herald
Teen in crash three months after twin’s death
A Dunedin woman crashed a car
while driving drunken friends around
town just three months after her twin
sister died in a smash.
Kyah Minakki Matthews, 17,
admitted charges of careless driving
and driving while disqualified and
appeared before the Dunedin District
Court this week.
It was the type of incident heard by
courts across the country every day,
but Matthews’s circumstances were
Her lawyer, Brian Kilkelly,
described how his client was
excelling despite the extreme
difficulties she faced.
Her mother had been incarcerated
and “she tragically lost her twin sister
in an accident last year”.
She was now the primary caregiver
for two intermediate-aged children,
Mr Kilkelly said.
Early on August 7, 17-year-old
Moana Matthews died on a Rotorua
road. The teen was seen driving
erratically through an intersection
at high speed, it was reported at the
Police tried to stop the car, but it
continued for a kilometre before its
driver lost control and crashed over
a stream bank and hit a bank on the
Moana Matthews was pronounced
dead at the scene and three others
received minor injuries.
On November 9, her twin sister
was also behind the wheel when
she tried to make a u-turn in High
Matthews made the “impulsive
decision” to drive a group of drunk
friends after the designated driver
became intoxicated, Mr Kilkelly told
“She made a very, very poor
decision,” he said.
Matthews caused the accident —
only metres from the courthouse
when she failed to see a car to
which she should have given way.
No one sustained serious injuries,
Judge Michael Turner said.
It took place only three weeks
before her driving disqualification
was due to end, the court heard.
But Matthews had refused to let the
adversity define her.
The court was provided with
references from her supporters,
including one from a lecturer from
her automotive engineering course at
Matthews had won the course prize
last year and had been accepted to
study at the next level this year.
She had also received a scholarship
to O utward Bound, the court heard.
“S he’s a young lady who has done
incredibly well over a period of
months,” Mr Kilkelly said.
“She is adamant this will be her last
appearance before the court. ”
Judge Turner agreed she was
“plainly a person with a lot of talent ”
and he was impressed by the letters in
The best way to repay those people,
he said, was for Matthews to stay out
He sentenced her to 60 hours’
community work but stressed it was
to be done in an “agency setting”
rather than among the general
Matthews was also banned from
driving for six months.
— Otago Daily Times
Fletcher Steel was successful
yesterday in its High Court
application to have D unedin niche
engineering company D C Ross
forced into liquidation, over a debt
of more than $600,000.
D C Ross was placed in receivership
by its majority shareholders, Dunedin
business family the McConnons, in
mid-September, with debts totalling
almost $19 million.
Liquidation proceedings will now
overtake the receivership, which had
the potential for a partial or full sale
of the business.
The lion’s share of the debt is to the
McConnon family trust ’s holding
company Aorangi Laboratories Ltd,
the 72.5% shareholder, which is
Up to 40% of the company ’s work
was for giant Chinese whiteware
manufacturer Haier, which owns
Fisher and Paykel Appliances, and
about 50% of its work was for the
The recent downturn in the
sector created cash-flow problems
for D C Ross, the receivers said in
While total debt stands at almost
$19m, the receivers had not divulged
the value of D C Ross assets, which
would have offset at least some of
the debt, as they did not want to
compromise a potential sale.
In the High Court of Dunedin
yesterday, before Associate Judge
Rob Osborne, counsel for Fletcher
presented the application, which was
Associate Judge Osborne called
for D C Ross representation, but
there was no appearance on behalf of
the engineering company, nor legal
delivered to the liquidators, so
there was no update available on
the company ’s position, under
The Fletcher debt was not disclosed
during yesterday ’s proceedings, but
the earlier receiver’s first report in
mid-November said Fletcher Steel
was the third secured creditor, and
a personal property security register
creditor, having a general security
All of D C Ross’s 12 employees
had stayed with the company on new
contracts during the receivership
period, and continued to work on
The staff were entitled to a
maximum preferential claim of
$22,160, but they had further
unsecured creditor claims, the
receivers said in November.
However, the receivers also
noted at the time “from our
obser vations to date, and given the
substantial amount owed to secured
creditors, we believe that there are
unlikely to be any funds available for
— Otago Daily Times
Engineering firm forced into liquidation
Predator control in Northland’s native
forests is being expanded to cover more
Conser vation Minister Maggie Barry
says it is part of the Government-funded
“ Battle for our Birds” and is vital if the
forests are going to be safe havens.
Kiwi, kokako, kakariki and riflemen
live in the forests, where the Department
of Conser vation last year spent more
than $1.2 million on pest control over
Ms Barry said funding is being
increased by $380,000 so that pest
control covers more than 40,000ha.
The Government last year committed
$20.7m to the “Battle for our Birds” and
predator control now covers more than
800,000ha nationally. — NZ N
Pet illnesses expensive
While cats are making the most of
their nine lives, and dogs are living up to
their reputations of eating anything and
everything, the top two insurance claims
for pets are not so exciting.
Southern Cross Pet Insurance has
released its top recent claims, with
cat bite abscesses taking out top place
for our feline friends, and otitis, or ear
infections, for our canine companions.
More than 16,000 pets are insured
with Southern Cross and last year
$4.57 million was paid out from 13,500
The most expensive claim was for a
dog’s tumour, costing $9975, followed
by an abscess and pancreatitis.
The most expensive claim for cats was a
fracture, costing $6345.
“As an owner, you owe it to your pet
to provide them with medical care when
they need it,” company head Anthony
McPhail said. — NZ N
Airport parking dodgers may face fee
Airline passengers who have been
parking in the Wellington suburb of
Miramar to avoid airport fees may
soon have to find a new solution as
officials look at clipping their wings.
Wellington City Council is
considering introducing 24-hour
time-restricted parking near the
Frustrated Miramar residents last
year claimed the council had done
nothing prevent people leaving their
cars and walking to the airport
Some hit back by placing makeshift
fences and concrete blocks outside
their homes, and one even resorted
to slashing tyres.
The council has been looking
hard at the complex issues relating
to parking pressures in the south
Miramar area, Cr Chris Calvi-
Freeman said. “O ur intention is
to make it financially unattractive
for people to park for long periods
within the boundaries.”
All home-made barriers on berms
to deter airport parkers would be
removed, but the council would
offer to replace them with posts and
Residents can provide feedback on
the proposal until February 24.
Cr Calvi-Freeman said traffic
experts had been collecting data
and looking into the concerns of
residents over the past year and
weighing up various options for
However, he said the airport was
not the only reason for parking
problems in the area as other
businesses attracted more workers
needing parking. — NZ N
Hamilton residents told to conserve water after mains break
Hamilton residents have been told
to conser ve water urgently after one
of the city’s key water mains was
damaged by a large riverbank slip.
The Hamilton City Council
said the conser vation measures
effectively mean implementing the
highest water alert level as staff work
to repair the eastern bulk main.
It said there were no issues with
water quality but supply levels could
be reduced significantly because of
The level four alert means no
outdoor water usage is permitted, but
residents are being asked to look at all
water usage in homes and businesses
while repairs are carried out.
The eastern bulk main supplies
about 27,000 homes and runs under
the Waikato River from the city’s
water treatment plant opposite
A substantial section of the
riverbank collapsed around the main
and there is a significant water leak.
Until the pipe can be repaired,
water will be supplied to the eastern
side of the city via the western bulk
main and from water in reser voirs.
No suspicious circumstances
Links Archive February 2nd 2017 February 4th 2017 Navigation Previous Page Next Page