Mercedes-Benz has been in the business of making cars since the turn of the last century. A division of Daimler A.G., a Stuttgart, Germany based global auto maker, this maker of luxury class vehicles has also been involved in the manufacturing of non-traditional vehicles. This includes land racers that have been involved early land speed records, boats, trucks and other types of vehicles. Mercedes-Benz is more than just cars. Here is a look at the history of Mercedes-Benz and the different types of non-automotive vehicles they have produced over the years.
Mercedes-Benz 2014 Canadian Sales
The Mercedes-Benz division of Daimler A.G. has been a leading maker of luxury vehicles and a top selling brand in Canada. According to Desrosiers Canadian Automotive Reports for May 2014, Mercedes-Benz has sold 14,889 units in Canada year-to-date (YTD) and has captured a 2 percent market share in the country. As compared to other luxury car maker’s sales in Canada, Mercedes-Benz have sales are 23 percent higher than BMW, 64 percent higher than Audi, and more than 100 percent higher than Lexus sales YTD (116%). BMW sales YTD have also outpaced by a significant margin sales of Infiniti (244%), Porsche (756%) and Jaguar (2,305%).
The History of Mercedes-Benz
Mercedes-Benz earliest production history dates back to 1901 under one of the predecessor companies to Daimler A.G., Rheinische Gasmotorenfabrik. The company produced its 35 HP Phaeton, a mid-size luxury vehicle as its first entrée into the luxury car market. The company would reinvent itself when Carl Benz’s Rheinische Gasmotorenfabrik merged with Gottlieb Daimler in 1926 to form Daimler-Benz A.G.
After World War II, the company re-emerged, resuming its full production of small, compact family vehicles (the 170 W136 Limousine) in 1947 and completing its reconstruction in 1951 by offering its mid-size luxury model Cabriolet and 300 W186 Limousine full-size luxury vehicle. From 1951 forward the company became the standard for mid and full-size luxury class vehicles for which it has recognized been recognized as a leader worldwide.
Non-Traditional Offerings of Mercedes-Benz
In addition to the luxury class vehicle that Mercedes-Benz is known for, the company has been involved in the making of racers designed specifically for speed and land speed record setting. Engineers at Daimler-Benz’s Mercedes division retrofitted a W125 Grand Prix race car in 1938 and set it on a path to establish a record for the fastest speed on a public road at 383 Kmh. Although motoring journalist Malcolm Campbell had set the record for land speed at 483 Kmh mark 5 years earlier in a modified Rolls Royce V12 at the Bonneville Salt Flats, Mercedes-Benz record was established on a public highway, a record that still stands 75 years later.
Mercedes-Benz has also partnered with its AMG division to produce high performance speed or cigarette boats. These vehicles, designed with a twin turbo-charged engine and equipped with up to 5 outboard engines, reach a top speed of 126 Kmh. Additionally, Mercedes-Benz is in the business of manufacturing trucks and specialty vehicles. These vehicles, sold under the brand names of Mercedes-Benz, Freightliner, Western Star, Thomas Built Buses and Fuso, comprised 21 percent of the company’s revenue in 2009. The company also designs and manufactures vans under the Mercedes-Benz and Freightliner brand, comprising 8 percent of the company’s 2009 revenue, and buses worldwide, sold also under the Mercedes-Benz brand as well as Setra in Europe and Orion and Setra brands in Canada.
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