Mercedes-Benz is a German manufacturer of luxury automobiles, buses, coaches, and trucks. It is currently a division of the parent company, Daimler AG (formerly DaimlerChrysler AG), after previously being owned by Daimler-Benz. Mercedes-Benz has its origins in Karl Benz's creation of the first automobile in January 1886, followed by Gottlieb Daimler and engineer Wilhelm Maybach's original Mercedes automobile in 1901. The first Mercedes-Benz brand name vehicles were produced in 1926, following the merger of Karl Benz's and Gottlieb Daimler's companies into the Daimler-Benz company. Mercedes-Benz has, over the years, introduced many technological and safety innovations that have become common in modern vehicles.
The two companies which were merged to form the Mercedes-Benz brand in 1926 had both already enjoyed success in the new sport of motor racing throughout their separate histories- both had entries in the very first automobile race Paris to Rouen 1894. This has continued, and throughout its long history, the company has been involved in a range of motorsport activities, including sportscar racing and rallying. On several occasions Mercedes-Benz has withdrawn completely from motorsport for a significant period, notably in the late 1930s and after the 1955 Le Mans disaster, where a Mercedes-Benz 300SLR collided with another car and killed more than eighty spectators. Although there was some activity in the inteverning years, it was not until 1987 that Mercedes-Benz returned to front line competition, returning to Le Mans, DTM, and F-1 sportscar racing with Sauber.
The 1990s saw Mercedes-Benz purchase engine builder Ilmor (now Mercedes-Benz High Performance Engines), and campaign cars at the famed Indy 500 race under the USAC/CART rules, eventually winning that race with Al Unser, Jr. at the wheel. The 90's also saw the return of Mercedes-Benz to GT racing, and the Mercedes-Benz CLK GTR, both of which took the company to new heights by dominating the FIA's GT1 class.
Mercedes-Benz is currently active in three forms of motorsport, Formula Three, DTM and Formula One. In Formula One, the company part owns Team McLaren and has supplied the team with engines since 1995. This partnership has brought success, including back to back Drivers Championships for Mika Häkkinen in 1998 and 1999 and a Constructors championship in 1998. The collaboration with McLaren has been extended into the production of roadgoing cars such as the Mercedes-Benz SLR McLaren.
When Studebaker entered into informal discussions with Franco-American automaker Facel Vega about offering their Facel Vega Excellence model in the United States, Mercedes-Benz objected to the proposal. Studebaker, which needed Mercedes-Benz distribution payments to help stem heavy losses, dropped further action on the plan.
Mercedes-Benz maintained an office within the Studebaker works in South Bend from 1958 to 1963 when Studebaker's U.S. operations ceased. Many U.S Studebaker dealers converted to Mercedes-Benz dealerships at that time. When Studebaker closed its Canadian operation and left the automobile business in 1966, remaining Studebaker dealers had the option to convert their dealerships to Mercedes-Benz dealership agreements.
The following passenger vehicles were in production in 2007:
Mercedes-Benz has also produced a supercar with McLaren Cars, an extension of the collaboration by which Mercedes engines are used by the Team McLaren-Mercedes Formula One racing team, which is part owned by Mercedes. The 2003 Mercedes-Benz SLR McLaren has a carbon fiber/fibre body with a 5.5l V8 supercharged engine. This is the same block as featured in SL55 AMG and the CLS55 AMG, though modified to give and of torque. The SLR has a maximum speed of and costs approximately US$500,000. Due to european pedestrian-protection regulations, Mclaren has decided to cease production of the SLR in 2009.
The most recent new joint-venture model, expected to reach production, is the mid-engine P8 supercar. Based around a unique carbon fiber/fibre monocoque, manufactured by McLaren, the P8 was originally predicted to receive the new naturally aspirated 6.3L V8 from Mercedes-AMG, but insiders now say that the engine will be modified for the car and will probably be twin- turbocharged to produce in excess of . The car is still in development, but likely to reach production to go on sale in early 2008, and have a price tag less than that of the SLR.
In 1994, this was altered so that the prefix reflected the model ("class", German "Klasse", in Mercedes-Benz terminology) and a number the displacement. The suffix was retained in some cases, for example "L" for long wheelbase, and "CDI" for Diesel (CDI = Common rail Direct Injection). Thus, the 500E in the example above became the E500 ("E-Klasse", 5 liters displacement). It should also be noted that while in the past the model number generally accurately reflected the actual engine displacement, this is currently not always the case - for example the E200 CDI and E220 CDI actually both have a 2.2 liter/litre displacement, and the C240 actually has a 2.6 liter/litre engine.
BlueHYBRID is used for hybrid electric vehicles .
Mercedes-Benz also produces buses, mainly for Europe and Asia.
The first factory to be built outside Germany after WWII was in Argentina. It originally built trucks, many of which where modified independently to buses, popularly named Colectivo. Today it builds buses, trucks and the Sprinter Van.
Mercedes-Benz produces a range of vans. The current range consists of
Previous models include
The current range consists of
On the other hand, Mercedes-Benz says it will have a demonstration fleet of practical, if small, electric vehicles on the road in two to three years, from 2008.
In the 1980s Mercedes built the world's first robot car, together with the team of Professor Ernst Dickmanns at Bundeswehr Universität München. Partially encouraged by Dickmanns' success, in 1987 the European Union's EUREKA programme initiated the Prometheus project on autonomous vehicles, funded to the tune of nearly 800 million Euros. A culmination point was achieved in 1995, when Dickmanns´ re-engineered autonomous S-Class Mercedes took a long trip from Munich in Bavaria to Copenhagen in Denmark and back. On highways the robot achieved speeds exceeding 175 kilometres per hour (roughly 110 miles per hour; permissible in some areas of the German Autobahn). The car's abilities has heavily influenced robot car research and funding decisions world-wide.
List of bicycles:
In September 2003, Mercedes-Benz introduced the world's first 7-speed automatic transmission called '7G-Tronic'.
Mercedes-Benz was the first to introduce pre-tensioners to seat belts on the 1981 S-Class. In the event of a crash, a pre-tensioner will tighten the belt instantaneously, preventing the passenger from jerking forward in a crash.
In 1959, Mercedes-Benz patented a device that prevents drive wheels from spinning by intervening at the engine, transmission, or brakes. In 1987, Mercedes-Benz applied its patent by introducing a Traction control system that worked under both braking and acceleration.
Stability control, brake assist (Press Release) , and many other types of safety equipment were all developed, tested, and implemented into passenger cars—first—by Mercedes-Benz. Mercedes-Benz has not made a large fuss about its innovations and has even licensed them for use by competitors—in the name of improving automobile and passenger safety - In fact, crumple zones and anti-lock brakes are now used on all modern luxury vehicles.
The most powerful naturally aspirated eight cylinder engine in the world is the Mercedes-AMG, 6208 cc M156 V8 engine. The V8 engine is badged '63 AMG' and replaced the '55 AMG' M113 engine in most models. The M156 engine produces up to , and although some models using this engine do have this output (such as the S63 and CL63 AMGs) specific output varies slightly across other models in the range.
The (W211) E320 CDI which has a (VTG) turbocharged, 3.0L V6 common rail diesel engine (producing 224-horsepower), set three world endurance records. It covered in a record time with an average speed of 224.823 km/h (140 mph). Three identical cars did the endurance run (one set above record) and the other two cars set world records for time taken to cover 100,000 km and respectively. After all three cars had completed the run their combined distance was (all records were FIA approved).
Mercedes-Benz's pioneered a system called Pre-Safe which uses radar to detect an imminent crash and prepares the car's safety systems to respond optimally. It also calculates the optimal braking force required to avoid an accident in emergency situations and makes it immediately available for when the driver depresses the brake pedal. Occupants are also prepared by tightening the seatbelt, closing the sunroof and windows, and moving the seats into the optimal position.
Mercedes Benz is developing a fatigue-detection system that warns the driver when they are displaying signs of micro-sleep (when the eyes stay closed for slightly longer than a natural blinking action). The system will use a variety of data including the individual driving style, the duration of the journey, the time of day and the current traffic situation. Fatigue mostly sets in gradually.
The first passenger road car to have brakes on all four wheels (1924)
The latest S-Class features Pre-Safe Brake, which is the first globally-available system that automatically brakes in the event of an impending impact.
Half a century of vehicle safety innovation helped win Mercedes- Benz the Safety Award at the 2007 What Car? Awards
The fastest (production) automatic road car in the world is the Mercedes-Benz SLR McLaren at 334 km/h (208 mph). The car was co-developed by DaimlerChrysler and McLaren Cars. The fastest street-legal saloon car in the world is the Mercedes-Benz Brabus (tuned) W211 'E V12' - based on the E-Class saloon.
How to Start Youngsters off on the Right Track; Motors Mercedes-Benz Offers Kids a Chance to Learn Driving Skills
May 25, 2007; Byline: By Jackie Violet IT'S a dream come true for many a youngster - their first experience driving and at the home of British...