Work on restoring and reconstructing the unique Streamliner commenced some 75 years after the car’s actual development. This project is one of the most elaborate of its kind and initially involved sifting through the archives to find sketches, photos and other documents so that the 540 K could be restored and reconstructed based on the tried-and-trusted methods of the past. So originality was assured right from the start.
A journey back in time.
How do you go about restoring and reconstructing a legendary automobile from which only the chassis, rear axle and a few detachable body parts remain? This was the question faced by the Mercedes-Benz Classic experts at the beginning of 2012 when they decided to embark upon their project with a journey back in time. Their destination was the 1930s: in the Mercedes-Benz archives, which include millions of original documents charting the history of the automobile, they hoped to find the documents describing the Streamliner and its technology.
It required plenty of patience. But this patience was rewarded: the lines drawing, delivery books and archive footage of the car were invaluable to the team. These documents provided valuable information about the car’s material mix, design and production. The tender drawing bears the signature of Hermann Ahrens and is essentially the Streamliner’s birth certificate.
Now the next step could be planned: the computer converted the data from the lines drawing into a three-dimensional surface model which was used to produce the production drawings, tools and templates.