Twenty Questions

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SUBJECT: Ola Kallenius
OCCUPATION: CEO, Merdeces-Benz AMC

What is your greatest achievement? Together with the team at Mercedes-Benz High Performance Engines we developed the new V8 for Fl in a very shodtime and won the 2008 title.

What is your biggest regret? I don’t really have any. I tend to look forwards, not back.

Whose work in the industry today do you admire most and why? Our engineers, who must deliver a great product but combine it with drastic improvements in fuel economy.

Who inspired you to join the industry and why? You could say the Mercedes star lured me…

What’s the best advice you’ve received? It’s not enough to be right, you need to get it right.

What’s the biggest challenge you’re facing in the next year? We need to juggle new projects while delivering our brand’s promise.

What car do you drive for fun? Now and then an SLS to enjoy the buzz of a super-sports car.

When did you last go for a drive for the sake of it? Where did you go? I am privileged to take many AMG production cars and prototypes for casual drives, so my appetite is fully satisfied.

What’s the best moment you’ve had in a car? The first time I went on a winter test with the SLR on the frozen lakes of northern Sweden.

What was your first car? VW Golf Mkl .

Did you pass your test first time? No, I flunked the practical test. I didn’t tell anybody and passed a couple of weeks later.

How will most cars be powered in 30 years time? A combination of internal combustion, electrical and fuel cell drive.

It’s your last drive. One car, one road. Which and where? The ultimate AMG sports car of the future on a great track. Maybe Spa?

What music do you listen to in the car? My sons have hijacked my iPod for the car…

What’s the best book about cars or car people you’ve ever read? The Machine That Changed the World by James P Womack.

What characteristics must a car have to be a worthy AMG product? To the basic qualities of a Mercedes-Benz we add AMG high performance, individuality and exclusivity.

After the SLS will there be more exclusively AMG cars? The SLS AMG has been a great success. On the basis of this we are working on a roadster and a fully electric version.

Could an AMG car ever be powered by diesel? With new technologies the torque and efficiency of our engines are close to a diesel but represent the character of a real sports engine.

What car will next receive the Black Series treatment? We’re optimistic about bringing such a product onto the market in the near future.

What can we expect from the Ducati association? Initial focus is on joint marketing and Mercedes-AMG’s involvement as an official car partner for the Ducati MotoGP team.

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