125 years ago – on 8 March 1886:
Gottlieb Daimler ordered a coach from coachbuilder Wilhelm Wimpff & Sohn in Stuttgart, ostensibly as a birthday present for his wife, Emma. In the same year he had a high-speed engine fitted to the coach at the Maschinenfabrik Esslingen engine works, building his first four-wheel automobile in the process.
125 years ago – on 25 March 1886:
Gottlieb Daimler had his surface carburettor patented (German Reich patent office registration no. 36 811, issued on 16 September 1886).
110 years ago – from 25 to 29 March 1901:
At “Nice Week”, works driver Wilhelm Werner won the Nice – Salon – Nice race over a distance of 392 kilometres in a Mercedes 35 hp. Werner also won the Nice – La Turbie hill-climb race, clocking up an average speed of 51.4 km. The new car’s impressive wins prompted Paul Meyan, secretary-general of the Automobile Club of France, to write after the race: “Nous sommes entrés dans l’ère Mercédès” (“We have entered the Mercedes era”).
95 years ago – in the spring of 1916:
Benz & Cie. established an apprentices’ department with full-time instructors at its factory in Mannheim, initially offering 30 apprenticeship places and later 80. In July of the same year, DMG also established an apprentices’ department.
80 years ago – on 22 March 1931:
Manfred von Brauchitsch won the Nizza – La Turbie race.
60 years ago – in March, 1951:
A month after the end of production of the O 5000 omnibus, production of the O 6600 was shut down in Sindelfingen and transferred to Mannheim. Omnibus production was now concentrated at the Mannheim plant.
45 years ago – in March, 1966:
Production of the 300 SEL passenger car model (W 109 series) began at the Sindelfingen plant. Air suspension as standard and a 10 centimetre longer wheelbase distinguished the new model from the 300 SE.
30 years ago – on 2 March 1981:
A model O 305 test bus running on methanol was presented in Untertürkheim. Three days later a large-scale trial involving 30 methanol-fuelled 280 SE passenger cars began in Berlin as part of the “Alternative Drives” project backed by the Federal Ministry for Research and Technology.
30 years ago – from 5 to 15 March 1981:
The airbag and the belt tensioner were highlights of the Geneva International Motor Show as key elements in the field of passive safety. Daimler-Benz was the first manufacturer worldwide to present such features. From 20 July they were available for the driver and front passenger as optional extras in the S-Class saloons (W 126).
30 years ago – in March, 1981:
The new customer centre opened in Sindelfingen.
30 years ago – from 17 to 22 March 1986:
The newly developed T 2 large-capacity van line, also known internally as LN 1, was presented to the international press in Rome. It initially comprised models 507 D to 811 D, with a permissible gross vehicle weight ranging from 3.5 to 7.5 tonnes.
20 years ago – from 7 to 17 March 1991:
The 140 series of the Mercedes-Benz S-Class was unveiled at the Geneva International Motor Show, featuring the 300 SE/SEL, 400 SE/SEL, 500 SE/SEL and 600 SE/SEL models. In addition to a host of technical innovations, the new luxury saloon also presented the traditional Mercedes radiator grille in a new guise, featuring an integrated radiator and the star positioned on the bonnet.
15 years ago – from 7 to 17 March 1996:
As part of its product offensive, Mercedes-Benz presented three world firsts at the Geneva International Motor Show: the estate models of the C-Class (202 series) and the E-Class (210 series) plus the people carriers of the V-Class (638 series) based on the Vito van.