Back in the 1880s, Gottlieb Daimler and Karl Benz each invented a high-speed engine — even though they had never met. Daimler worked with his business partner, Wilhelm Maybach, to design what would eventually become a modern gasoline engine in 1885. Around the same time, Benz began the development of one of the first automobiles by using bicycle technology and a four-stroke engine.
A few years later, Benz introduced a four-wheeler and Daimler struck a deal with William Steinway to produce horseless carriages in the US.
It was during this time that Daimler established DMG and Benz founded Benz & Cie. In 1900, DMG introduced a car — the ‘Mercedes’. This was a stepping stone in the history of Mercedes-Benz, but unfortunately, the war soon started in Germany. With little or no fuel for cars and high taxes, it made automobile production disastrous.
The Creation of Mercedes-Benz
The conditions of war forced DMG and Benz to sign an agreement of mutual interest, but they could maintain their individual identities. However, in 1926, the companies merged to form the Daimler-Benz company. A year later, the new company christened their joint automobile project the Mercedes-Benz.
The merger was considered a success, and production of Mercedes-Benz cars rose to 7,000 vehicles in 1927. In the 30s, their success would only continue with the debut of the Mercedes-Benz W15 — their largest and most prestigious car yet. This allowed them to become one of the leading brands in the automotive industry. As a result, Mercedes-Benz was created as a separate division of the Daimler-Benz AG.
Production After the War
The war took a toll on the company, and all of their overseas assets were confiscated as a part of the Potsdam Agreement. It took a year to get permission from the Americans to begin to produce automobiles again, and two more years to restore the plant. A full reconstruction of Daimler-Benz’s operations facilities wasn’t complete until 1951 — almost six years after the end of the war.
Once the company was rebuilt, things really took off and they would go on to set sales records. This was due in large part to breaking into the American market — Daimler-Benz of North America was established in 1955.
Mercedes-Benz Worldwide Growth
It was about this time that they introduced the 190 model, a compact roadster with a diesel engine which set new records in 1959. They they debuted the 300 SL, which was the first production vehicle equipped with the new fuel-injection technology.
Daimler-Benz would go on to put together teams and vehicles for some of the most well-known races in motorsports. The combination of style and success on the track began to earn them the reputation for being a technologically advanced luxury vehicle — something they’re still known for today.
The company founded Mercedes-AMG as a separate high-performance division of the Mercedes-Benz in 1967, introducing the famous 300SEL 6.3 V8 Saloon. Towards the end of the 70s, the G-Class and S-Class series were introduced, and are still being produced today.