Press Kit: Exhibition “Milestones Automotive Design - Example
Mercedes-Benz” in the Pinakothek der Moderne in Munich
Jun 24, 2008
The Exhibits
Benz 200 hp record vehicle of 1909
„Blitzen-Benz” (Lightning Benz)
The „Blitzen-Benz” broke the magical record of 200 km/h for the first time in 1909. In 1911, this vehicle set the world record of 228.1 km/h. At show events in the USA, the „Blitzen-Benz” was marveled at as the „eighth wonder of the world”.
  • Reconstruction with original parts
  • Year of manufacture of the original: 1909
  • Engine: 4 cylinder (inline), gasoline engine
  • Displacement: 21,504 cm3
  • Output; 200 hp (147 kW) at 1600 rpm
  • Maximum speed: 228.1 km/h
  • Quantity: 6
  • Production period: 1909 to 1913
Mercedes-Benz 540 K of 1938
„Autobahnkurier” (Motorway Courier)
The „Autobahnkurier” epitomized modernity on wheels and was a symbol for overcoming distances at high speed and in excellent comfort. This vehicle was used by its first owner, a Spanish eye specialist, to travel in North Africa and later for frequent trips between Spain and Switzerland.
  • Year of manufacture: 1938
  • Engine: 8 cylinder (inline), gasoline engine with compressor charging
  • Displacement: 5401 cm3
  • Output: 115 hp (85 kW) at 3400 rpm, with compressor 180 hp (132 kW)
  • Maximum speed: 170 km/h
  • Quantity: 419 (all variants of 540 K)
  • Production period 1936 to 1939 (all variants of 540 K)
Mercedes-Benz 2.5 liter racing car of 1955
„Stromlinie” (Streamliner)
With this vehicle, Mercedes-Benz made its return in 1954 to Grand Prix racing. On 4 July, Juan Manuel Fangio and Karl Kling achieved a double victory at the first attempt at the French Grand Prix. The W 196 won Fangio and Mercedes-Benz the Formula 1 World Drivers’ Championship Title in 1954 and 1955.
  • Year of manufacture: 1955
  • Engine: 8 cylinder (inline), gasoline engine with direct fuel injection
  • Displacement: 2497 cm3
  • Output: 290 hp (213 kW) at 8500 rpm
  • Maximum speed: 305 km/h
  • Production period: 1954 to 1955
Loan from the Technisches Museum Wien
Mercedes-Benz 300 SL of 1955
„Flügeltürer” (Gullwing)
The design of the 300 SL standard sports car can be traced to the racing Coupé of 1952, which in the 1952 racing season, won the Pan-American and 24-hour Le Mans race. The standard 300 SL version presented in 1954 in New York quickly became the dream sports car of the 1950s.
  • Year of manufacture: 1955
  • Engine: 6 cylinder (inline), gasoline engine with direct fuel injection
  • Displacement: 2996 cm3
  • Output: 215 hp (158 kW) at 5800 rpm
  • Maximum speed: 250 km/h
  • Quantity: 1400
  • Production period: 1954 to 1957
Mercedes-Benz Design Study from 1977
C 111-III
The C 111-III of 1977 was a fascinating design study that served to transform aerodynamic knowledge into a functional design.
The outstanding cd value of 0.178 was achieved thanks to the use in certain areas of the vehicle of sharp-edged design elements running parallel to the air flow lines. The design of the Mercedes 190 subsequently saw these significant elements make their way into series production configuration.
The following year, a diesel record-setting car was developed based on this design study. With its aerodynamic body and 5-cylinder turbo-diesel engine, the C 111-III captured nine absolute world records for Mercedes-Benz.
Its predecessor was the C 111, an experimental vehicle that had already caused a sensation back in 1969 with its futuristic design and Wankel engine.
Mercedes-Benz 2005 research vehicle
Bionic Car
The tropical boxfish was the template for this research vehicle, with which in 2005 Mercedes-Benz addressed current concepts on an aerodynamically-efficient, reliable, comfortable and environmentally-friendly automobile.
  • Year of manufacture: 2005
  • Engine: 4 cylinder (inline), turbo diesel with common-rail direct injection
  • Displacement: 1991 cm3
  • Output: 140 hp (103 kW)
  • Quantity: 1
The CLS milled model
The model consists of a metal support, a rigid foam core and a coating of 2-component master paste. The data generated from the clay models is used to mill a full-size model – revealing the unmistakable shape of the CLS for series production development. At its market launch in 2004, the CLS was unique among contemporary automobiles as it marked the return by Mercedes-Benz to the hitherto unusual category of the four-door Coupé.
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