The corporate history of Daimler AG and its predecessors
The corporate archives preserve documents and artefacts concerning the company founders, company history, development of the plants, Board of Management documents and minute about meetings of the Board of Management and Supervisory Board, record concerning sales and investments, external companies, press kits, the art collection including rare posters, original graphics and designs for publicity material, the publicity portfolio with advertisements dating back to 1885, documents relating to social history and artefacts such as coins, medals, cups and promotion articles. The racing collection is worthy of particular mention, with its documentation dating from the earliest races in 1894 through to the periods of the Silver Arrows of the 1930s, the 1950s and the present day.
The product history of Mercedes-Benz and the predecessor brands
The product archives document the history of passenger cars and commercial vehicles since the invention of the automobile by Karl Benz and Gottlieb Daimler. The archived materials include brochures, price lists, vehicle operating manuals, in addition to workshop and parts literature, technical reports and design drawings. The original order books, engine books and vehicle records represent a unique store of information which documents the as-delivered condition of virtually all passenger cars ever built by the Daimler, Mercedes and Mercedes-Benz brands. It also contains the vehicle data cards of over 10 million passenger cars from the period 1945 to 1985.
The main component and backbone of the media archives is provided by the approximately three million photographs dating back to the early days of automobile manufacture to modern times, including some 300,000 large-format glass negatives. The film collection of some 4,000 films is equally important, as is the audio collection, which includes original interviews with contemporary witnesses and other contributions to oral history. These media are made available in a comprehensive database, which enables rapid searches and distribution of recorded matter.
Extensive literature on vehicles and the automobile economy
The archives’ library is a large reference library (without lending service) with a focus on automotive technology and the automobile economy. It is a perfect complement to the archives collection. In addition to the many volumes on the Mercedes-Benz brand, Daimler AG and its predecessor companies, there is also a comprehensive stock of works dealing with the topics of automotive and technological history in general. Along with other publications dating from the early years of motoring, an almost complete edition of the Allgemeine Automobil Zeitung, a car magazine first published in 1900, is a remarkable rarity on the international library scene. In addition, there are many books published by the Archives itself. In total the library has around 10,000 books and 220 magazines, 90 of which are currently in print.
Hands-on automotive history
The Mercedes-Benz Classic collection is the basis of all automotive activities linked to the unique tradition of Mercedes-Benz. Together with the archives, it forms the core of Mercedes-Benz Classic. A company-owned vehicle collection has been documented in the archives since 1921.
The collection – unique worldwide – is made up of approximately 700 vehicles. These include around 500 passenger cars, 140 racing vehicles and 60 commercial vehicles by Mercedes-Benz and its predecessor brands Benz, Daimler and Mercedes. Some of these – about 160 exhibits – are on display at the Mercedes-Benz Museum, other vehicles are presented at exhibitions and motor shows are take part in classic car events and rallies.
An integrated collection concept sets out guidelines for developing and administering the vehicle collection. This ensures that now and in future all the ground-breaking products from the brand with the three-pointed star are collected and preserved for posterity according to established criteria.
Please note the new address
Mercedes-Benz Classic Contact Center:
Open daily from 9.00 a.m. – 6.00 p.m.
tel.: +49(0)711-17 30 000
fax: +49(0)711-17 30 400