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THE ARTICLE

Mercedes-Benz is a German manufacturer of luxury cars, buses, coaches, and trucks. It is a division of its parent company, Daimler AG. Mercedes-Benz was founded in 1881 and is the oldest car maker around today. Its history includes the first petrol-powered car, created by Karl Benz in 1886. The company marketed its first Mercedes car in 1901. Mercedes has built up a reputation for designing high-quality, safe and luxurious cars. They have become a status symbol for business people and the rich and famous. The company is synonymous with speed and has been involved with motor sports since 1926. The company first won the Formula 1 championship in 1954. The company website says keeping customers satisfied is “at the heart of the Mercedes-Benz customer-care philosophy”.


 

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WARM UPS



 

1. BRAINSTORM CHAT: Write all the words you can think of about Mercedes on the board or on a piece of paper. Talk about these words with your partner(s).

2. MERCEDES MORNING: Each student pretends to be an employee of Mercedes. They walk around the class and talk about the company and their job.

3. RUMOURS: Each student writes down a pretend rumour about Mercedes. They then walk around the class and talk to other students about their rumour.

4. GOOD AND BAD: Brainstorm good and bad things about Mercedes and write them on the board. Students talk about these in pairs.

5. TRUE OR FALSE: Students find out several facts about Mercedes. They write these down and add the same number of things about the company that are false. Students test each other on which of their points are true or false.

6. FACTS: In groups, students write down as many facts as they can about Mercedes. The winner is the group with the most facts. Teacher may wish to have groups share their facts to make sure they are real.

*  LISTENING / READING GAP FILL

Mercedes-Benz is a German ____________________ cars, buses, coaches, and trucks. ____________________ its parent company, Daimler AG. Mercedes-Benz was founded in 1881 ____________________ maker around today. Its history includes the first petrol-powered car, created by Karl Benz in 1886. ____________________ first Mercedes car in 1901. Mercedes has built up a ____________________ high-quality, safe and luxurious cars. They have become ____________________ business people and the rich and famous. The company ____________________ speed and has been involved with motor sports since 1926. The company first won the Formula 1 championship in 1954. The company website says keeping ____________________ “at the heart of the Mercedes-Benz customer-care philosophy”.

*  CORRECT THE SPELLING

Mercedes-Benz is a German manufacturer of ruyuxl cars, buses, coaches, and trucks. It is a siiidonv of its parent company, Daimler AG. Mercedes-Benz was founded in 1881 and is the oldest car maker around today. Its iohyrts includes the first petrol-powered car, created by Karl Benz in 1886. The company maeekrtd its first Mercedes car in 1901. Mercedes has built up a aeotnprtiu for designing high-luytaiq, safe and luxurious cars. They have become a ttussa symbol for business people and the rich and famous. The company is synonymous with speed and has been vlndoeiv with motor sports since 1926. The company first won the Formula 1 championship in 1954. The company website says keeping customers tideifsas is “at the heart of the Mercedes-Benz customer-care iphhlosoyp”.

*  UNJUMBLE THE WORDS

Mercedes-Benz is a German manufacturer of luxury cars, buses, coaches, and trucks. is division its It a of parent company, Daimler AG. Mercedes-Benz was founded in 1881 and is oldest maker today the car around. Its powered car history includes the first petrol -, created by Karl Benz in 1886. The company marketed its first Mercedes car in 1901. reputation a up built has Mercedes for designing high-quality, safe and luxurious cars. They a symbol business become status for have people and the rich and famous. The company is synonymous with involved motor and been with speed has sports since 1926. the won first company The Formula 1 championship in 1954. The company website says satisfied customers keeping heart the at “ is of the Mercedes-Benz customer-care philosophy”.

*  INSERT THE VOWELS

M_rc_d_s-B_nz _s _ G_rm_n m_n_f_ct_r_r _f l_x_ry c_rs, b_s_s, c__ch_s, _nd tr_cks. _t _s _ d_v_s__n _f _ts p_r_nt c_mp_ny, D__ml_r _G. M_rc_d_s-B_nz w_s f__nd_d _n 1881 _nd _s th_ _ld_st c_r m_k_r _r__nd t_d_y. _ts h_st_ry _ncl_d_s th_ f_rst p_tr_l-p_w_r_d c_r, cr__t_d by K_rl B_nz _n 1886. Th_ c_mp_ny m_rk_t_d _ts f_rst M_rc_d_s c_r _n 1901. M_rc_d_s h_s b__lt _p _ r_p_t_t__n f_r d_s_gn_ng h_gh-q__l_ty, s_f_ _nd l_x_r___s c_rs. Th_y h_v_ b_c_m_ _ st_t_s symb_l f_r b_s_n_ss p__pl_ _nd th_ r_ch _nd f_m__s. Th_ c_mp_ny _s syn_nym__s w_th sp__d _nd h_s b__n _nv_lv_d w_th m_t_r sp_rts s_nc_ 1926. Th_ c_mp_ny f_rst w_n th_ F_rm_l_ 1 ch_mp__nsh_p _n 1954. Th_ c_mp_ny w_bs_t_ s_ys k__p_ng c_st_m_rs s_t_sf__d _s “_t th_ h__rt _f th_ M_rc_d_s-B_nz c_st_m_r-c_r_ ph_l_s_phy”.

*  PUNCTUATE THE TEXT AND ADD CAPITALS

mercedes-benz is a german manufacturer of luxury cars buses coaches and trucks it is a division of its parent company daimler ag mercedes-benz was founded in 1881 and is the oldest car maker around today its history includes the first petrol-powered car created by karl benz in 1886 the company marketed its first mercedes car in 1901 mercedes has built up a reputation for designing high-quality safe and luxurious cars they have become a status symbol for business people and the rich and famous the company is synonymous with speed and has been involved with motor sports since 1926 the company first won the formula 1 championship in 1954 the company website says keeping customers satisfied is “at the heart of the mercedes-benz customer-care philosophy”

*  CHOOSE THE CORRECT TENSE

Mercedes-Benz .......... (be) a German manufacturer of luxury cars, buses, coaches, and trucks. It .......... (be) a division of its parent company, Daimler AG. Mercedes-Benz was .......... (found) in 1881 and .......... (be) the oldest car maker around today. Its history .......... (include) the first petrol-powered car, .......... (create) by Karl Benz in 1886. The company .......... (market) its first Mercedes car in 1901. Mercedes has .......... (build) up a reputation for designing high-quality, safe and luxurious cars. They have .......... (become) a status symbol for business people and the rich and famous. The company .......... (be) synonymous with speed and has .......... (be) involved with motor sports since 1926. The company first .......... (win) the Formula 1 championship in 1954. The company website .......... (say) keeping customers satisfied .......... (be) “at the heart of the Mercedes-Benz customer-care philosophy”.

*  REWRITE WITH SPACES

Mercedes-BenzisaGermanmanufacturerofluxurycars,buses,coaches,andtrucks.Itisadivisionofits
parentcompany,DaimlerAG.Mercedes-Benzwasfoundedin1881andistheoldestcarmakeraroundtoday.Itshistoryincludesthe
firstpetrol-poweredcar,createdbyKarlBenzin1886.ThecompanymarketeditsfirstMercedescarin
1901.Mercedeshasbuiltupareputationfordesigninghigh-quality,safeandluxuriouscars.Theyhavebecomeastatussymbolforbusinesspeopleand
therichandfamous.Thecompanyissynonymouswithspeedandhasbeeninvolvedwithmotor
sportssince1926.ThecompanyfirstwontheFormula1championshipin1954.Thecompany
websitesayskeepingcustomerssatisfiedis“attheheartoftheMercedes-Benzcustomer-
carephilosophy”.

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*  CHOOSE THE CORRECT WORD

Mercedes-Benz is a German manufacturer of ____________ cars, buses, coaches, and trucks. It is a division of its ____________ company, Daimler AG. Mercedes-Benz was founded in 1881 and is the oldest car maker ____________ today. Its history includes the first petrol-powered car, created by Karl Benz in 1886. The company ____________ its first Mercedes car in 1901. Mercedes has ____________ up a reputation for designing high-quality, safe and luxurious cars. They have become a ____________ symbol for business people and the rich and famous. The company is synonymous with ____________ and has been involved with motor sports since 1926. The company ____________ won the Formula 1 championship in 1954. The company website says keeping customers ____________ is “at the heart of the Mercedes-Benz customer-____________ philosophy”.

 

 

status
luxury
around
speed
first
built
care
parent
satisfied
marketed

*  PROJECT MERCEDES

Part 1. Your mission is to increase the profits and sales of Mercedes. Complete this  table with your project partner(s):

Main products

 

 

 

How to improve them

 

 

 

A brand new ‘killer’ product

 

How Mercedes is better than the competition

 

How to beat the competition

 

Part 2. Change partners and look at their project. Suggest improvements. Ask for advice on your project:

Part 3. Make a presentation on your project. Give it to the class. Vote the best projects.

*  MERCEDES – ROLE PLAY 1

Role  A – Mercedes CEO

You believe your company is the best in the world. It pays its workers very well and working conditions are great. Your company is very green – it cares about the environment. You think your levels of customer service are great. Disagree with person B, C and D.

Role  B – Mercedes worker

You think it’s a bad company to work for. You’re very unhappy with pay, raises and bonuses. You are very unhappy with the working environment. You don’t like the company’s policy on the environment. You keep hearing profits are more important than customers. Disagree with A and C. Tell D the truth.

Role  C – Mercedes customer

You are a customer of Mercedes. You used to think it was great, but not now. Its workers are always very rude. No one ever answers the phone. You are shocked about its policy on the environment. You think all staff should get less pay. You disagree with person A and B. Tell D the truth.

Role  D – A journalist

You keep hearing bad things about Mercedes. You want to tell the world in your newspaper. You heard the CEO gets a huge bonus every year. You found a company memo saying profits are more important than the environment. You want to know why so many staff are ill. Find the truth.

*  MERCEDES – ROLE PLAY 2

Role  A – Mercedes New Products Director

You have created a new product for Mercedes. You believe the new product will be the company’s best ever. It will be a bestseller. There are people who do not agree with you. You need B, C and D on your side. Tell them why this is a product that will bring great things to Mercedes.

Role  B – Mercedes Marketing Director

You think the company’s new product is a really bad idea. It will give your company a really bad name. You think the New Products Director is trying to destroy the company. Try to get him/her to understand there’s no way the new product will sell. Try to get person C and D on your side.

Role  C – Mercedes Market Researcher

You have interviewed thousands of people about the new product. They don’t like it or hate it. You think it will be successful if they make many changes. Tell the New Products Director he/she needs to change the product. You neither like nor trust person B. Disagree will him/her.

Role  D – Mercedes Shareholder

You know a lot about Mercedes’ new product. You are worried it will not sell and share prices will go down. You think A is crazy and must find a new job. You agree with everything B says. You don’t agree with C. The new product should not go on the market.

*  JOB INTERVIEW ROLE PLAY

INTERVIEWER  (Write the questions you want to ask the candidate.)

1.

________________________________________________________

2.

________________________________________________________

3.

________________________________________________________

4.

________________________________________________________

5.

________________________________________________________

6.

________________________________________________________

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INTERVIEWEE  (Write questions you want to ask the interviewer.)

1.

________________________________________________________

2.

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3.

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4.

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5.

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6.

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*  DISCUSSION (Write your own questions)

STUDENT A’s QUESTIONS (Do not show these to student B)

1.

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2.

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3.

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4.

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5.

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6.

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STUDENT B’s QUESTIONS (Do not show these to student A)

1.

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2.

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3.

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4.

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5.

________________________________________________________

6.

________________________________________________________

*  MERCEDES SURVEY

Write five GOOD questions about Mercedes in the table. Do this in pairs. Each student must write the questions on his / her own paper.

When you have finished, interview other students. Write down their answers.

 

STUDENT 1

_____________

STUDENT 2

_____________

STUDENT 3

_____________

Q.1.

 

 

 

 

Q.2.

 

 

 

 

Q.3.

 

 

 

 

Q.4.

 

 

 

 

Q.5.

 

 

 

 

*  WRITING 1 – SPEED WRITING

Write anything about Mercedes for 10 minutes. Show your partner your paper. Correct each other’s work.

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*  WRITING 2 – LETTER OF COMPLAINT

Write a letter to Mercedes. Complain about one of its products. Ask for a refund. Show your partner your paper. Correct each other’s work.

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*  WRITING 3 – LETTER OF APOLOGY

Write a letter of apology to the customer. Explain why you cannot give a refund. Show your partner your letter. Correct each other’s work.

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*  HOMEWORK

1. VOCABULARY EXTENSION: Choose several of the words from the text. Use a dictionary or Google’s search field (or another search engine) to build up more associations / collocations of each word.

2. INTERNET INFO: Search the Internet and find more information about Mercedes. Talk about what you discover with your partner(s) in the next lesson.

3. MAGAZINE ARTICLE: Write a magazine article about Mercedes. What have they done recently? What are their plans? Read what you wrote to your classmates in the next lesson. Give each other feedback on your articles.

4. MERCEDES POSTER Make a poster about Mercedes. Make sure you sell the company to the public.  Show it to your classmates in the next lesson. Give each other feedback on your posters.

5. MY MERCEDES LESSON: Make your own English lesson on Mercedes. Make sure there is a good mix of things to do. Find some good online activities. Teach the class / another group when you have finished.

6. ONLINE SHARING: Use your blog, wiki, Facebook page, MySpace page, Twitter stream, Del-icio-us / StumbleUpon account, or any other social media tool to get opinions on Mercedes-Benz. Share your findings with the class.

ANSWERS

You can check your answers to these activities by looking at the article at the top of this page.

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