Half a century of Driving Performance

10/09/2017

Celebrating 50 years of Mercedes-AMG success

AMG – these three letters stand worldwide for supreme automotive performance, exclusivity, efficiency, and highly dynamic driving pleasure. In 2017, the company is celebrating its 50th anniversary. In the course of this half-century, Mercedes-AMG has recorded numerous successes in motor sport and through the development of unique road-going vehicles, thereby repeatedly underlining its position as a highly successful sports car and performance brand.

Today, as a wholly owned subsidiary of Daimler AG, the Affalterbach-based company represents the sporting spearhead of the Group. For each of the now around 1,500 employees, the focus will be on the brand promise of “Driving Performance”, which unites the core strengths of AMG: cutting-edge technology and a passion for dynamic, emotively appealing products.

Development of new categories of customers through portfolio expansion

Mercedes-AMG is on the road to worldwide success with our strategic portfolio expansion and can look back on a sensational year. The 63 series models still constitute our core product line, and they continue to delight auto enthusiasts around the world. In addition, our AMG GT series, which was developed entirely in-house, is now available as a broad-based family, with which we have impressively demonstrated our expertise as a sports car brand. At the same time, our broad portfolio puts us in the perfect position for further sustained growth.

2016 saw the biggest strategic model initiative in the history of Mercedes-AMG with over ten new models being added to the product portfolio. From January 2017 performance-minded customers are able to choose from over 50 models. In each category, Mercedes-AMG boasts a comprehensive and impressive product offering: from the most powerful standard-production four-cylinder compact, the sportily elegant S 65 with a superior twelve-cylinder engine, saloons and estates in many different output classes, a broad range of SUVs and Coupés, to cabriolets and variously configured roadsters. The available technology is among the best on offer in the respective vehicle categories, ranging from optimized rear-wheel drive to state-of-the-art all-wheel drive, as well as from a dual-clutch transmission to a sporty nine-gear automatic transmission.

In 2016, AMG added particularly dynamic and fascinating models to the GT family in the form of the GT R and the two open-top roadster variants, the GT Roadster and the GT C Roadster. The Coupé is also available in the anniversary year with the same next-level performance and technology. It is positioned between the AMG GT S and AMG GT R and, at the time of the launch, will be exclusively equipped as the Edition 50 special model. With the AMG GT C, Mercedes-AMG is extending its sports car portfolio to six models.

Hypercar with Formula 1 Technology

In 2017, Mercedes-AMG is giving a fascinating peek into the future performance in the form of a street-legal hypercar. The hypercar is thus the first commercially available vehicle with F1 hybrid powertrain and road approval. With a system output of over 1,000 hp and four-wheel drive with all-electric front axle, it marks the pinnacle of what is currently technologically feasible. In terms of output and efficiency, this hypercar points the way to “AMG Future Performance”. AMG models are already among the most efficient in their class.

Outstanding Customer Sports Season 2016

With a total of 18 overall victories and 32 other podium finishes, the international customer and performance teams celebrated a sensational season in 2016 with the new Mercedes-AMG GT 3. This model posted the greatest victory to date since the inception of the AMG customer sports programme, with overall victory, pole position, fastest lap as well as further finishes in second, third, fourth and sixth place now on record in the annals of motor sport. The brand’s clean sweep of the podium places in the world’s largest car race was shared by the AMG team BLACK FALCON (P1), the AMG team HTP Motorsport (P2) and the HARIBO Racing Team-AMG (P3). Mercedes-AMG GT 3 has also wriiten a new chapter in the history of customer sports. At the ADAC Zurich 24h race at the Nürburgring in 2016, the first four places went to team competing in the Mercedes-AMG GT 3.

Competence Centre for V8 Development

Affalterbach is home to the management, administration, sales, development and design team as well as AMG hand-crafted engine building. This is where AMG V8 engines are produced. Other engines are produced in Kölleda (four-cylinder in-line engines) and Mannheim (V12 engines). Each engine is hand-assembled by a single engine builder at these sites according to the “one man, one engine” philosophy and provided with a badge hand-signed by the relevant technician.

Mercedes-AMG is today responsible for the development not only of the new eight-cylinder family of the Mercedes-Benz brand, but also of the AMG V8 engines. The first standard-production vehicle to be fitted with a V8 engine developed in Affalterbach was the G 500, which celebrated its market launch in September 2015.

Milestones in the History of the Sports Car and Performance Brand

  • AMG was founded in Burgstall in 1967 by Hans-Werner Aufrecht and Erhard Melcher. The pair set up their first workshop in an old mill as an “engineering office and design and testing centre for the development of racing engines”. The letters stood for Aufrecht, Melcher and Großaspach – the birthplace of Aufrecht.
  • In 1971, AMG became famous overnight, with the red-painted AMG 300 SEL 6.8 winning its class in supreme style at the Spa-Francorchamps 24-hour race while finishing second in the overall classification.
  • The plant in Affalterbach was founded in 1976. In a newly constructed building, the racing engine workshop evolved into a manufacturer of sports saloons and coupés.
  • In 1984, Melcher completely independently developed a cylinder head with modern four-valve technology, the innovative engine being used as a 5.0 litre V8 in the Mercedes-Benz 500 SEC. The principle of “one man, one engine” was valid from the outset.
  • From 1986, the new cylinder head was used not only in the AMG version of the S-Class, but primarily in the saloon and, from 1987, in the coupé of the mid-size class (W 124). Rated at 265 kW (360 hp), the car was christened “The Hammer” by the specialist media in the USA.
  • From 1988, AMG not only constructed Mercedes-Benz 190 E racing cars, but was also responsible for their deployment in the German Touring Car Championship (DTM)
  • Collaboration with Mercedes-Benz began in 1990. In 1991, AMG embarked on the development and production of sports versions of Mercedes-Benz vehicles.
  • The C 36 AMG, launched in 1993, was the first vehicle on the market to result from the collaboration agreement with Daimler-Benz. With sales of 5,000 units up to 1997, it became the first best-seller. With the C36 AMG, AMG in 1996 supplied the first official Formula 1 safety car.
  • In 2001, the newly developed 5-speed automatic transmission in the C 32 AMG was paired with the 3.2-litre supercharged V6. Innovative touch control allowed the gears to be selected manually.
  • Unveiled in 2009, the Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG was the first vehicle to be developed entirely in-house by the sports car and performance brand. The sound, along with un compromising driving dynamics and iconic gull-wing doors, found fans around the world.
  • AMG branched into motor racing with the SLS AMG GT3 in 2011, At the same time, the SLS GT3 marked the entry of Mercedes-Benz into exclusive customer racing sport.
  • Unveiled in 2014, with the Mercedes-AMG GT series, the Affalterbach-based company is once again underlining its status as a highly dynamic sports car brand. Following the SLS AMG, the GT models are the second sports car family to be developed entirely in-house. The front mid-engine concept with transaxle and the intelligent aluminium lightweight construction form the basis for a highly dynamic driving experience.
  • With almost 70,000 units, Mercedes-AMG set a new sales record in 2015. The growth drivers included not just the newly launched 43 series models, but, above all, the performance vehicles of the C-Class, SUVs and compacts.
  • With almost 100,000 units delivered, Mercedes-AMG in 2017 heads into the year of its 50th anniversary on the back of a new sales record.

Patcharaporn Korbuakesorn
Head of Membership, Events & Communication

+66 (0) 2-055-0620

patcharaporn(at)gtcc.org