1958 Mercedes-Benz 300 Adenauer: In the name of the Chancellor

1958 Mercedes-Benz 300 Adenauer: In the name of the Chancellor

1958 Mercedes-Benz 300 Adenauer: In the name of the Chancellor

EngineInline 6Horsepower180.00 SAE @ 5500 RPMTorque192 Ft-Lbs (260 NM) @ 4500 RPMEngine LocationFrontDrive TypeRWD Transmission4-step manual, 3-step automatic BorgWarner

During the post-war revival of German industry, known as the “German economic miracle”, luxury cars again appeared on the roads of Germany. One of the first was the Mercedes-Benz 300, unofficially nicknamed Adenauer – after the name of the first German chancellor Konrad Adenauer.

Source: Gooding & Company

The Second World War caused the almost destruction of the German automotive industry, particularly the Daimler-Benz empire. Even though the main production workshops were scattered around different cities, in September 1944, the British-American Air Force launched a large-scale operation to destroy the industrial giants of Germany – as a result of a massive two-week air bombardment, the workshop in Gaggenau and the diesel engine plant Berlin-Marienfelde, the engine and body shops in Sindelfingen and the main shop in Stuttgart were destroyed by more than 75%. Thus, after assessing the damage in January 1945, the board of directors declared that Daimler-Benz no longer existed.

The origins

Source: RM Sotheby’s

The post-war recovery of the company was extremely difficult, few believed in the success of the enterprise and the complete revival of the former greatness of Daimler-Benz: funds were sorely lacking not only for the restoration of factories, but also for the mere development of new models, and the unstable political situation and competitive pressure further exacerbated the situation. The first post-war model, released by the company in June 1946, was the subcompact sedan W136 – “170V”. The entire W136 line was already considered obsolete in those years since it was developed back in the mid-30s, and 38 hp under the hood hardly met the requirements for mass cars of that time. Later, in 1949, a large-scale modernization of the entire line was carried out, including an increase in engine capacity to 52 hp, the appearance of a wide variety of body types (convertible, station wagon, etc.), and the installation of a diesel engine: this was the beginning of a new page in the history of the company. By the end of the 40s, the German automaker managed to restore production capacity and the board of directors decided to restore the pre-war brand as a manufacturer of a luxury vehicle. Introduced at the 1951 Frankfurt Motor Show, the new luxury model was made for politicians, businessmen, and celebrities. It restored the status of a manufacturer of prestigious and high-quality automobiles. W186 was produced from 1951 to 1962 and was extremely popular. The car was equipped with a powerful 6-cylinder engine of 2996 cm³ with an overhead camshaft. The layout of the car was classic – a separate frame and body, and the assembly of each model was carried out manually. Customers were offered a choice of two body types – a sedan or a four-door cabriolet “D”. It was the convertible that was very popular among politicians,  businessmen, and celebrities. Moreover, the vehicle got an unofficial name “Adenauer”, owing its name to the first Federal Chancellor of Germany – Konrad Adenauer (as Chancellor from 1949 to 1963). He owned one of these automobiles and greatly appreciated it, praising it at every opportunity and recommending the W186 as the only automobile for a successful man.

The 1958 model year

Source: Historics Auctioneers

The popularity of the 300s spurred the creators to constantly modernize, work on improving the appearance and install the latest technological advances. “Adenauers” were released before 1962, because the demand for them remained at a significant level. The latest addition to the 300 series was the “D” line of flagship sedans and convertibles, with a major overhaul of the roof and tail of the W189 in 1958. To conquer the important segment of the US executive car market, models were equipped with power steering and air conditioning, and their tires were painted white. The most popular 300 color scheme was considered the color “dark burgundy”, reminiscent of a mixture of ripe cherries, carmine, and dark brown shades. In interior design, high-quality leather upholstery, fine wood trim, telephone, radio, and other technological innovations were widely used.

Did you know?

Source: Bilweb Auctions

Production of the Adenauer four-door convertible stopped for two years because of a lack of demand (from 1956) and resumed in 1958. The updated 1958 model was available with power steering.

Contact us if you have this or another classic car to sell.

1958 Mercedes-Benz 300 Adenauer: In the name of the Chancellor

EngineInline 6Horsepower180.00 SAE @ 5500 RPMTorque192 Ft-Lbs (260 NM) @ 4500 RPMEngine LocationFrontDrive TypeRWD Transmission4-step manual, 3-step automatic BorgWarner

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *