The SClass a Classic in France MercedesBenz Passion e

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The S-Class: a Classic in France

by Deppe | 16.April 2013

and France have enjoyed a special relationship right up to the day: the Stuttgart-based manufacturer has remained true to the Salon de l’Automobile (International Motor in Paris since it was introduced in and has time and again celebrated premieres, especially with of the luxury class.

This presence also reflects the that vehicles of the luxury were the focus of the German product line long ‘S-Class’ became the official Mercedes-Benz and the predecessor brands always been synonymous luxury, comfort, and safety. In Paris also became the for the official launch of Stuttgart’s luxury class: with the models from Mercedes-Benz already borne the ‘S’ in their designations for many years, the Motor Show in Paris was to be the time that the German manufacturer officially presented an to the public. Internally, this was known as the 116 model series.

in France

France has played a role for Mercedes-Benz from the The automobile was invented in 1886 simultaneously by Carl Benz and Daimler in Germany. But the new form of owed its first successes and breakthrough to our French neighbours: initially viewed with by the Germans, the automobile was more welcome to sophisticated Parisian with its enthusiasm for technology.

For reason an internal document of the (DMG) from 1902 to France as the ‘leading country of since ‘in no other country has the gained even remotely as ground’.

As early as 1898 the Club de France, established in of 1895, organised the first motor show in Paris on the of the Jardin des Tuileries, running 15 June to 3 July. Nearly people attended the show to the 232 vehicles on display. To convince of the efficiency of the new means of conveyance, manufacturers presented the new vehicles in drives at Versailles, about 20 away.

In January 1899, the Der Motorwagen wrote about exhibition: ‘At this outstanding of petrol-driven motor cars we acknowledge the merit earned by the engineers Benz in Mannheim and in Cannstatt for the introduction as well as, in for the dissemination of these vehicles in as is also unhesitatingly acknowledged both in the specialist literature and by the industrialists themselves.’

The two German engineers may indeed be the founders of the French automotive both had already presented vehicles with the aid of French associates at the 1889 World in Paris. While the agent Roger significantly contributed to the of the Benz automobile before the of the century, the French firms of Levassor and Peugeot installed the engines built under at Panhard Levassor in their own so that the two firms qualify as the motor car manufacturers in France.

Daimler-Motorengesellschaft brought two Victoria and a heavy-duty lorry with a capacity of five tons to the reported Der Motorwagen in its February edition on the first Motor in 1898 in Paris. ‘With smooth operation and power, items may be said to outshine the products to a fair extent.’ automobiles were also on at the first Paris Motor ‘Maison Parisienne in Paris has a number of quite lovely with two to twelve seats. firm brokers mainly the and installation of engines from Gasmotorenfabrik Benz Co. (Mannheim) in and has achieved the same quite success for the parent company.’

At the of the century, France again the place where the vehicle – was revolutionising individual mobility – a proper portion of glamour. development was especially the work of the businessman Emil Jellinek, who the German luxury class closer to the French and moreover these vehicles the brand ‘Mercedes’. As an entrepreneur well-known in he began promoting Daimler in the upper levels of society in Baron Rothschild and other figures purchased cars him.

By the time of Gottlieb death in 1900, Jellinek had the considerable number of 34 cars in way, while demanding the Daimler-Motoren-Gesellschaft and its head designer Maybach ever-higher levels of technical performance.

Birth of the brand

With his talent for and sales, Jellinek finally to convince DMG that the future of the lay in speed and elegance. ‘At the time I on the scene, Daimler cars solid, usable and operationally but merely theoretical vehicles,’ Jellinek’s son Guy. In speed he saw not the to be incautious, but rather the actual of driving a motor vehicle: ‘If I get more out of an automobile than out of a of horses, then I may as well go the horses!’.

In April 1900, Jellinek and DMG an agreement on the sale of vehicles and the of a new engine under the product ‘Mercedes’ – named after daughter, born in 1889. afterwards, within a few weeks, ordered a total of 72 vehicles of performance levels from which in 1900 was a truly order. The Stuttgart-based firm the first vehicle equipped the new engine, a Mercedes 35 hp, to Jellinek on 22 1900.

This new ‘Mercedes’ by Wilhelm Maybach created an uproar at the beginning of the 20th at the time, it was the most advanced in the world and even today as one of the first modern automobiles. As as 4 January 1901, L’automobile-Revue du published an article stating: something new to see at present, not in Paris, but in The first Mercedes vehicle to be in the Cannstatt workshops has arrived in and has been put on display for all drivers, to the generosity of its owner, Mr Jellinek.

We to admit that the Mercedes car is very interesting. This vehicle will be a fearsome in the 1901 races.’

The journalist prove to be right: the German indeed showed their with numerous successes the Nice racing week in March of 1901. Jellinek entered the competition under the of ‘Monsieur Mercédès’. The successes of the new car impressed the public and the experts.

Meyan, the General secretary of the Automobile Club, also the new supremacy of the German Mercedes brand on the race tracks had been dominated for so long by makes: ‘Nous sommes dans l’ère Mercédès’ (we entered the Mercedes era), he after the Nice Week of

Wilhelm Maybach, who Jellinek was could ‘invent on command’ and who was by the French as the ‘King of Designers’, developing the automotive design: as power and maximum speeds so did production and unit sales. Of the models, called Mercedes as of 1902, 232 cars were produced in 1903, 698 during the year and even 863 in 1905. The Classic collection contains an spectacular exhibit of the brand’s top at that time and an impressive of the long tradition behind S-Class: the elegant and luxurious sedan of 1904 comes Emil Jellinek’s personal

A ‘taste for Mercedes’ in France

By the of the century, the automobile was generating enthusiasm in France that the exhibition site no longer enough space. The Paris Show therefore relocated at the end of to the exhibition area of the Grand on the Champs-Elysées. The largest preserved palace of today was built in for the Paris Exposition Universelle and the burgeoning automotive industry a glamorous forum: the main Art hall is 240 metres long and 40 high, and covered by a 15,000 glass roof.

The 1902 Show literally glistened, as the of electric light. 230,000 marvelled at both the lighting and the cinematographic demonstrations. Among the exhibits, foreign makes Mercedes especially impressed and the interest of the public. ‘For the time since the French been holding their automotive exhibition, they’ve had to with powerful foreign reported the Allgemeine Automobil on the 1902 Paris Motor ‘It was above all the Mercedes vehicles were a thorn in the side of the followed by Benz with its modern model.’ The magazine Der even found the Paris Show to reveal a ‘taste for now absolutely prevailing in France’.

In a retrospective, the Automobil-Rundschau again the special status in Paris of the automobiles from Germany. the German motor vehicle the show in any event proved to be a turning point: a German had now taken the lead in the international market,’ the magazine wrote in to the 1903 Paris Motor ‘People are copying Mercedes. are practically no cars without a top, no engine without exhaust valves, without a ignition, without Mercedes All in all: a Salon de Mercedes, as one trade paper aptly The article continues with exuberance: ‘Mercedes automobiles the Cannstatt factory are by far the most items in the show, and their on the entire French industry be denied. There follows of Mannheim with its own successful that are in no way inferior to the best products.’

In subsequent years the Mercedes-Benz at the Paris Show continued to be the of important premieres: in 1928, the 8-cylinder model from the brand debuted as the Mercedes-Benz 460, and in 1930 the 770 model, or Mercedes’, had its world premiere. The new top model quickly became the official vehicle for both and non-royal heads of state as as for representatives of industry and high

Presentation of the first S-Class in in 1972

While the ancestors of S-Class repeatedly impressed the at the Paris Motor Shows, the model range officially the name ‘S-Class’ followed 40 years ago. In October Mercedes-Benz celebrated a double-premiere at the Salon de l’Automobile in Paris the 116 model series: together the new model range, the brand Stuttgart established a new name. The class sedans have been officially designated the S-Class’.

While the letter ‘S’ had in the model designations of Mercedes-Benz class models since ‘S-Class’ now became the incisive for an entire family of models.

new S-Class is the result of many of theoretical and practical development which, based on the established of the preceding model series with the latest and state-of-the-art achievements, has disclosed new dimensions in the sector,’ according to the 1972 Motor Show press whose front cover read: ‘Mercedes-Benz presents: the new

‘The vehicles which, superior performance, well-balanced characteristics and comfortable luxury, the utmost active and passive have adopted many of the elaborate project studies C 111 and ESF 5 as as ESF 13 (Experimental- S icherheits- Fahrzeug). A new is accordingly setting standards will continue to apply in to come,’ stated Mercedes-Benz on occasion in emphasising its tradition as the manufacturer of luxury class


Through its S-Class, Mercedes-Benz closely associated with the Motor Show in subsequent as well. For example, in October among other models, the manufacturer presented the 300 SE 2.8 and 300 SD turbo at the show, adding two less and especially economical variants to the line. Interest was also by the 300 SD, which while already exported to the USA since October now became the first diesel of the S-Class to also be available in Besides the two new models, the eight-cylinder and versions with re-designed were also presented in

All three major assemblies with mixture enrichment at open throttle, which led to reduces power but better characteristics.

New S-Class for the Motor centennial

For the 100th anniversary of the show so rich in tradition, the brand couldn’t let the opportunity of once again celebrating an premiere there: at the 1998 Motor Show Mercedes-Benz the new S-Class of the 220 model series to the public; it was the successor to the 140 model after seven and a half of production.

‘Altogether the new S-Class its attractiveness to the classical virtues of a – to the combination of reason and emotion. It serenity through trusted in comfort and safety, and guarantees through an elegant design and ride characteristics,’ explained Dr Zetsche, at the time a Member of the of Management of Daimler-Benz AG responsible for on the occasion of the presentation of the new member of the class in Paris.

‘With its appearance and its many technical the new Saloon will continue the successes of the predecessor model, was manufactured a total of over times and in past years has an average share of 42 per cent of the market in its segment,’ boasted the release for the Paris Show. like the predecessor model, the new will also be a trendsetter for the field of passenger car technologies. The new Saloon implements over 30 innovations, for which Daimler have filed a total of 340 A large part of the innovations by Daimler-Benz as the first car manufacturer are standard on the S-Class.’

The new features the COMAND operating and display and the innovative DISTRONIC autonomous cruise control, for example. But the access and drive authorisation KEYLESS-GO and AIRMATC, an air suspension that automatically adapts the of the dampers at all four wheels to the road and load conditions as as to the driving style through dampening and level control in the and rear, also belong to the highlights of this model

At the Paris Motor Show’s the motto of the new S-Class, ‘Sense and also applied to the architectural and presentation of the Mercedes-Benz brand: the vehicles, the Stuttgart manufacturer’s also presented fascinating performances and artworks from the most prominent art schools had turned their attention to the new

A new era in automotive safety

Mercedes-Benz highlighted technical innovations of the face-lifted S-Class at the 2002 Show in Paris. ‘The number one luxury class also stays in the fast technically and stylistically in model 2003: at the Paris Motor Mercedes-Benz is presenting an S-Class even more attractive and thanks to modifications of many as the manufacturer pointed out in the press

‘At the top of the new trend-setting high-tech innovations is the preventive occupant protection with which Mercedes-Benz has a new era in automotive safety.’ The system can a potential accident in advance and prepare occupants and the vehicle in – by automatically correcting the seat and tensioning the seat belts, for for optimal airbag function.

The special relationship between and the Salon Mondial de l’Automobile in has continued without interruption to the day. 115 years after the and 40 years after the presentation of the from model series 116 in Mercedes-Benz presented the sculpture S’ at the 2012 Show: stirred to by state-of-the-art lighting technology, the gives viewers a foretaste of the new of Mercedes-Benz’s top model.

The stylistic presented in Paris already what will also the design of the new S-Class: ‘its and constant modernity’ in the words of Head Designer Gorden speaking in Paris.

Source: Classic

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