McCaw now mates with Merc

A star car for a star of sport - Richie McCaw is now a Mercedes' man


FOR all the years he was an All Black, a Ford did nicely … now that’s he’s retired from the team and become New Zealander of the Year, Richie McCaw has something much flasher to drive.

Mercedes Benz New Zealand has announced the Kiwi sports legend and two-time Rugby World Cup winning captain for the All Blacks has become a “friend” of their brand, a role that will see McCaw show up at the occasional brand event – and also puts him into Benz’s second-biggest soft-roader, the GLE.

Benz says the partnership, a first it has established with a New Zealand sports identity, continues the philosophy of aligning with the very best in-class.

“Richie is arguably New Zealand’s most widely recognised and highly acclaimed sporting idols, whose achievements both on and off the field truly transcend sport. His ongoing outstanding commitment to New Zealand Rugby, iSPORT Foundation charity and to New Zealand has also seen him recognised as the 2016 New Zealander of the Year,” Mercedes-Benz NZ's general manager Ben Giffin says.

"We couldn't think of a better fit for our brand than Richie, and we are absolutely delighted to align with someone of his calibre, who perfectly embodies the Mercedes-Benz ethos of 'The Best or Nothing'."

While the publicity photo above show the former player with the fastest moving off-roader Benz builds, the GLE AMG 63, McCaw has actually chosen to drive a more sensible set of wheels - the company's GLE 350d  (seen below) - as part of the deal.

In reference to the GLE, McCaw said "it suits my lifestyle perfectly – all the technology that these cars come with now is pretty awesome.

McCaw will link other "Friends of the Brand" – in New Zealand that’s a restauranteur and two clothing designers - to be present at a number of exclusive VIP events run by the carmaker.

Ford New Zealand, which as an All Blacks’ sponsor provides cars for team members, said he could not specificallt identify the models McCaw drove during his time with the team because "we sponsor the team, not individuals."

However he added that the Falcon, Territory and Ranger had frequently stood tall among past choices, while the Everest was also now becoming popular.

He reminded that the Blue Oval remained “the driving force behind the All Blacks”.