Benz Prinz Heinrich special touring car (1910).

Mercedes-Benz Classic Calendar 2015.

  • Classic Calendar 2015 – November.

  • Benz Prinz Heinrich car, 1910.

    In 1910 ten Benz special touring cars of a fundamentally new design were among the vehicles that participated in the third staging of the popular Prinz Heinrich Rally, a competition covering a 1944 km course through Germany and Alsace. The cars were equipped with four-valve-per-cylinder engines and caused a stir with their aerodynamic body shape and distinctive pointed rear end. Measurements by the Technical University of Berlin have confirmed the very high level of efficiency of the Benz Prinz Heinrich car.

    Benz Prinz Heinrich special touring car (1910).

    The Benz Prinz Heinrich car of 1910 was a powerful special touring car entered by the Mannheim brand in the third Prinz Heinrich Rally. Inaugurated by the brother of German Emperor Wilhelm II and held for the first time in 1908, in 1910 this touring car competition traced a route of nearly 2,000 kilometres from Berlin to Bad Homburg via Kassel, Nuremberg, Strasbourg, and Metz. To this extremely popular motor racing event Benz & Cie sent ten fully redesigned, regulation-compliant four-seater racing touring cars featuring a propeller shaft drive and aerodynamically enhanced body with a characteristic, pointed rear end.

    The large-displacement four-cylinder engines – 5.7-litre and 7.3-litre variants found use – were equipped with power and efficiency boosting four-valve-per-cylinder technology. The best Benz touring car was driven by Fritz Erle, who finished in 5th place. Just three weeks later the car successfully competed in the Russian Czar Nicholas Touring Trial over a 3,000-kilometre route from St. Petersburg via Kiev and Moscow back to St. Petersburg.

    Technical data of the Benz Prinz Heinrich special touring car.

    Year built: 1910
    Cylinders: 4/in-line
    Displacement 5,715 cubic centimetres
    Output: 59 kW (80 hp)
    Top speed: 126 km/h