Known the world over as the top-most luxury car brand, Mercedes Benz’s history dates back nearly 150 years. It was created by founders Karl Benz, who was creator of the first automobile and Gottlieb Daimler, who was the inventor of the high-speed petrol engine. Both Benz and Daimler were born in Germany and were both driven by a desire to create something new and unique.
In 886, Karl Benz made the first motorized tricycle and Daimler came up with the horseless carriage. A few years later, Benz improved his design to accommodate four wheels while Daimler struck a deal with William Steinway to produce horseless carriages in the United States. At around the same time Daimler established DMG and Karl Benz founded Benz & Cie. In 1900, DMG introduced the Mercedes, which was the first step towards the Mercedes Benz model we know today. War broke out in Germany soon after, increasing taxes and diminishing the availability of fuel made car production very difficult.
These and many other problems would force DMG and Benz to sign an agreement of mutual interest while maintaining their own individual identities. It wasn’t until 1926, that the companies merged to form the Daimler-Benz company. A year after the merger, the first Mercedes-Benz car was introduced.
Mercedes-Benz 1930- 1960
In the heels of the successful Mercedes-Benz W15 , the company launched a new cabriolet of the same brand in 1932. Two years later, Mercedes introduced the very popular W23, a family car that became available in a 2-door cabrio-limousine and a sedan version. When the W136 model launched in 1936, Mercedes began to gain a foothold in the motor industry outside of Germany.
In the same half of that decade the company also released the now famous 260 D model that was the world’s first diesel-run passenger car. By the end of the 30s, the company had introduced several successful models including the W136 Spohn Roadster and the W138 limousine. The Second World War would see the company stop the creation of vehicles throughout the early forties.
The company resumed production in 1946 with the introduction of the 170 V. By the time the 50s rolled around Mercedes as Germany’s foremost sellers thanks to the company’s iconic models that include the 190 and the 300 SL. The 300 SL in particular was the first production vehicle to utilize the new fuel-injection technology.
Mercedes-Benz 1960- 1980
Mercedes would start the new decade very well with the introduction is the W110 which was available as a station wagon and a 4-door sedan. By 1962, most of the models the company had released had undergone significant design changes to fit in with the muscle car era that was the 60s.
Later in that decade, in 1967 the company founded Mercedes- AMG, a separate, high performance division. The first car produced by this division was the popular 300SEL 6.3 V8 saloon that earned the nickname “Red Snow.”
In the 70s, Mercedes introduced the SL and SLC 107 series, which portrayed exceptional beauty and were available in two-door coupe and convertible options. These models proved to be the most successful models in the history of the company. Towards the end of the decade, the company introduced the G-class and the S-Class series.
Mercedes-Benz 1980- Present Day
By the 80s, Mercedes like most other car manufacturers was increasingly worried about the issue of CO2 emissions and were all rallying to do something about it. Mercedes would become one of the first companies to do something about it by complying with the many new environmental regulations and introducing the closed-loop, three-way catalytic converter to reduce car pollution.
The company also made several other changes to their vehicles including changes to air filter and oil filters. By the second half of the decade, in 1987, the company launched the 100 D 631 series and the W201 Series 2 made its debut the following year.
In the 90s the G-class Wagons and the SUVs as well as many new E-class, C-class and S-class models were introduced to the market. By 2005 , Mercedes was involved in the development of technologies and systems like the BlueTec system that is aimed at lowering CO2 emissions.
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