The German companies that eventually became Daimler A.G., as Mercedes-Benz has been known since 2007, date to the late 19th century. Carl Benz founded Benz & Cie. in October, 1883. His company’s open-air Benz Patent Motorwagen from 1886 is considered the first automobile, despite having only three wheels. In 1894, Benz released the Velo, which was the world's first mass-produced car.

Gottlieb Daimler founded Daimler-Motoren-Gesellschaft (DMG) in November, 1890. The first car to bear the Mercedes brand was produced in 1901—the vehicle took its name from the 10-year-old daughter of an early salesman for Daimler, an Austrian businessman named Emil Jellinek. This first Mercedes, designed by Daimler’s Wilhelm Maybach, had a 35 horsepower, 5193cc, four-cylinder engine.

Prior to and during World War I, both firms focused on manufacturing aircraft engines and trucks for the German war effort. After the war, stung by inexpensive Ford imports, Daimler attempted to diversify its product line by make bicycles and typewriters. But the Treaty of Versailles played havoc on the German economy, and by 1926, the two auto companies had merged as Daimler-Benz. Touring convertibles, sports cars, boxy sedans, and trucks filled out the list of models from the late 1920s until the mid-1930s. By the end of the decade, the company was back in the military-truck and aircraft-engine business. During World War II itself, Daimler-Benz relied on forced labor to fill roughly half its workforce.

The 1950s saw the reintroduction of the Mercedes-Benz brand into international automotive markets, as well as the dawn of a new look for the car company’s products. Up first was the 300SL (for “sport" and "leicht" in German, or “sporty" and "light” in English), which was released in 1954 as a Gullwing. The car’s name referred to the way in which the doors resembled bird wings when fully opened (they were hinged on the car’s roof). The visual effect was impressive, but from a practical standpoint, the Gullwing left a lot to be desired. The body leaked, the frame was difficult to repair if damaged (dealers hated it), and if the car rolled in an accident and landed on its roof, the doors were next to impossible to open. After 1,400 Gullwings, the 300SL was redesigned in 1957 as a roadster convertible, 1,858 of which were produced until 1963.

During the 1960s, Mercedes mostly devoted itself to its 200-series SLs. The 230s had a removable steel roof, known as a Pagoda, and proved popular with customers—almost 20,000 of the 230 models were sold between 1963 and 1967. The 250SL was a transitional model (just over 5,000 units were shipped), while the 280L was the best of the bunch, with enough power (170bhp vs. 150) to give the vehicle a sports-car feel, even with an automatic transmission. Just under 24,000 280SLs were purchased, making it the best-selling Mercedes of the decade.

Although Mercedes-Benz also produced convertibles and coupes in the 1960s, one of its most famous cars was a luxury sedan, which is known as a saloon in England, called the 600. Owned by everyone from John Lennon to Fidel Castro, the 600 had a big, 300bhp V-8 engine, which it needed to move the 5,000-pound vehicle (6-door models with 8 seats, known as Pullmans, weighed almost another half ton, but even those beasts could do zero to 60 in just 10 seconds and cruise at 120mph). From 1963 to 1981, a mere 2,190 600s were built, while only 487 Pullman versions were manufactured during the same period.

Best of the Web (“Hall of Fame”)

Hemmings Auto Blogs

Hemmings Auto Blogs

This great (and frequently updated) blog from the folks at Hemmings Motor News is a visual feast of old and new pho… [read review or visit site]

Clubs & Associations

Most watched eBay auctions    

Mercedes-benz : 600-series Limousine @no Reserve@ 1965 Mercedes Benz 600 Swb Limo - W100 M100 - 040g Black - SunroofMercedes-benz : 190-series 190 Sl 1958 Mercedes Benz 190 Sl Roadster Complete Car Includes New Floor PansMercedes-benz : Sl-class 2 Door 1969 Mercedes Benz 280 Sl Original Solid Needs RestoredMercedes-benz : Sl-class 280sl 1969 Mercedes 280 Sl 4 Speed Both Tops Ac Needes Complete RestorationMercedes-benz : 300-series Sel @no Reserve@ 1970 Mercedes Benz 300sel 6.3 W109 M100- Complete History - ToolkitMercedes-benz : Sl-class 230sl Barn Find Euro W113 Pagoda Light Project 1965 Mercedes 230 SlMercedes-benz : Other Unk 1952 Mercedes Benz 170 SMercedes-benz : 200-series 250se 1968 Mercedes Benz 250 Se Coupe Green 4 Speed Manual W 111 2 DoorMercedes-benz : Sl-class 280sl 1968 Mercedes Benz 280 Sl Fully Documented Original Fenders And UndercarriageMercedes-benz : 200-series 280se 3.5 Coupe 1970 Mercedes Benz 280 Se 3.5 Sunroof Coupe Gorgeous Documented Floor ShiftMercedes-benz : Sl-class Convertible 1976 Mercedes 450 Sl Convertible No Reserve Call Dan 863 370 6712Mercedes-benz : Sl-class 230sl 1964 Mercedes Benz 230 Sl Gorgeous California Car Orig Fenders UndercarriageMercedes-benz : 300-series 1954 Mercedes Benz Adenauer W 186 Webasto RoofMercedes-benz : 190-series 190sl 1960 Mercedes Benz 190 Sl Gorgeous Extremely Original Southern California CarMercedes-benz : Sl-class 280sl Pagoda Roadster. Rare 4 Speed. Gorgeous! 1969 Mercedes 280 Sl Pagoda Roadster Rare 4 Speed Gorgeous See VideoMercedes-benz : 200-series 280 Se Coupe 2 1969 Mercedes Benz 280 Se CoupesMercedes-benz : Sl-class 280sl 1969 Mercedes Benz 280 Sl Spectacular Incredibly Original One Ca Family OwnedMercedes-benz : 200-series 220se Cabriolet 1963 Mercedes Benz 220 Se Cabriolet Gorgeous Ca W 111 W Rare Rear Bucket SeatsMercedes-benz : 300-series Four Door Saloon Lwb 1973 Mb 300 Sel 4.5 California Benz W SunroofMercedes-benz : Sl-class 280sl Convertible 1968 Mercedes Benz 280 Sl Fresh Restoration 24 K Original Miles Show Car 230 250Mercedes-benz : Other Roadster 2-door 1936 Mercedes Roadster Replica1:18 Autoart Mercedes 190e 2.5 16v Evo 2 Cosworth Bbs Modified Tuning Umbau 190Mercedes-benz : 200-series 240d 1974 Mercedes Benz 240 Diesel 28 K Miles The Absolute Finest ExampleMercedes-benz : Sl-class Coupe - Two Door 190 Sl 1962 2 Door ConvertibleMercedes-benz : 200-series 240d 1976 Mercedes Benz 240 D Diesel Extremely Low Miles Stunning Original ConditionMercedes-benz : 300-series Santa Barbara/anaheim Hills/west Coast Car. 1965 Mercedes 300 Se Coupe California Historic Registry Auto 1 Of 700 MadeMercedes-benz : 200-series 220 Se 1961 Mercedes Benz 220 Se True Survivor Of Time Rare Auto LqqkMercedes-benz : Other Unimog 404 S 1962 Mercedes Benz Unimog 404 S Factory Winch 4 X 4 UltimateMercedes-benz : Sl-class 450sl 1977 Mercedes Benz 450 Sl 11 100 Orig Miles Grey Red LeatherMercedes-benz : Sl-class Convertible 1966 Mercedes Benz 230 SlMatchbox Superfast No27a Mercedes 230 Sl - Ex/rare *brazilian* Issue (pale Blue)Mercedes-benz : Sl-class 190 Sl Roadster 190 Sl Mercedes Benz Roadster 1961 With Hard TopMercedes-benz : Sl-class Convertible Immaculate Low Mileage 1977 Mercedes Benz 450sl Convertible Stunning Red InsideMercedes-benz : 200-series 280 Se 4.5 1971 Mercedes 280 Se 4.5 New Mexico Car Very Solid Running Car No ReserveMercedes-benz : 200-series 220 1972 Mercedes Benz 220Mercedes-benz : Sl-class Chrome Mercedes Benz 280sl 1969 Rolling Body -solid For Restoration - 113 PagodaVintage 1969 Hot Wheels Redline Purple Mercedes Benz 280sl Moc Bp BlisterRivarossi Divisione Pocher Mercedes Benz 540k Cabrio Special 1936 ModelMercedes-benz : Sl-class 350sl 1972 Mercedes 350 Sl W 107 R 107 Rare 4 Seater Euro Trim Not 450 Sl 380 Sl 560 SlMercedes-benz : 200-series 280c 1976 Mercedes Benz 280 C W 114 No Reserve4 Vintage 1960's Aurora Model T-jet Mustang T-bird Corvette Mercedes Slot Cars Mercedes-benz : Sl-class Sl 1975 Mercedes Benz 450 Sl Silver Only 57 000 Miles GaragedDinky Toys Mercedes Benz Truck And TrailerMercedes-benz : 400-series Sl 1972 Mercedes Benz 450 Sl Very Clean All OriginalMercedes-benz : 200-series Chrome Mercedes Benz 220se Coupe 1963 - European Sunfoorf 4 Spd Model Good To RestoreLego Technic Mercedes-benz Unimog U 400 (8110)Cmc 1936 Mercedes-benz 540 K Cabriolet B, Serie Nr 1906 In 1:24 Scale Vintage Lego Ho Scale Mercedes 190 Sl With Orginal Garage DenmarkMercedes-benz : C-class Chrome Mercedes Benz,280 C,2dr,1973 Gas,orig.wire Wheels&tool Kit,books,good Cond.look!Autoart Millenium 1:18 Black 1968 Mercedes-benz 280se Coupe, Nib!1960s Alps Japan Battery Op 12" Mercedes Tin Toy Race Car For Parts/restorationLtd Toy Stamp & Red Line Mercedes 280sl Aqua W White Int Mint On Card1935 Mercedes Benz 500k-ak Cabriolet Pocher Model Kit Rare 1/8 Started To BuildCmc 1:18 1939 Mercedes-benz W 165- Tripolis Winner- Le Of 1500Schuco Studio 1050 Mercedes Wind Up Car Us Tin Toy Germany Indy Racer 500Hot Wheels Red Line, Rl, Hk, 1973 Enamel Yellow Mercedes Benz 280sl, Near MintMercedes-benz : Sl-class 450 Sl Roadster 1976 Mercedes 450 Sl Convertible California Car Very Rare RoadsterSpecials Print Poison Exoto 1:18 Mercedes C9 Car Le Mans Champion, 63rd1960's 15 Pc Matchbox Collection W/ Original Boxs Mercedes Jaguar Trailer JeepLesney Matchbox No 46c Mercedes Benz 300 Se Coupe Mib