Mille Miglia.

Mercedes-Benz sponsoring Mille Miglia 2016.

The Mille Miglia 2016 will take place from 19 to 22 May 2016. Mercedes-Benz is supporting the prestigious and famous road race across Italy as Automotive Sponsor. The brand itself is fielding numerous vehicles from its own collection in the 1,000-mile race, including the Mercedes-Benz SS, SSK and 300 SL models.A 190 SL will also be participating for the first time in the revived Mille Miglia.Original documents confirm that such a model also took part in the original event in 1956.

Mercedes-Benz and the Mille Miglia are inseparably linked. The list of historic triumphs includes the win by Rudolf Caracciola and Wilhelm Sebastian in an SSKL in 1931 – the first victory by a non-Italian driver – and the record run by Stirling Moss and Denis Jenkinson on board a 300 SLR in 1955.

At the Mille Miglia 2016 Mercedes-Benz will be on hand at the start and finish as well as along the route in its capacity as Automotive Sponsor. And it will be in the running itself, too - the list of vehicles is truly mouth-watering: The SS and SSK models will represent the era of the supercharged sports cars of the 1920s and 1930s. Several 300 SLs will be contending from the 1950s – plus the 180 D, 220 a and 190 SL models.The roadster is taking part in the revived Mille Miglia for the first time - it came to light in 2015 that a 190 SL also took part in the original '1,000 miles' race in 1956. The French team Michel Bianco / Jean Loup Pellecuer with starting number 347 came in 121st back then, after a driving time of 16 hours, 6 minutes and 15 seconds.

Mercedes-Benz Mille Miglia Revival.

In addition to the actual Mille Miglia 2016, the Mercedes-Benz Mille Miglia Revival is also being staged. A maximum of 60 vehicles will be competing. All Mercedes-Benz SLs, vehicles from Mercedes-AMG and AMG, special and concept vehicles of outstanding technical or historic significance and all Mercedes-Benz cars built before 1986 are eligible – with the exception of those vehicles which have been approved for the Mille Miglia.

Today’s Mille Miglia is a reliability trial.The route is based on the historical course of the race, leading as then from Brescia to Rome and back. Demanding special stages await the participants and their classic vehicles along the 1,000 miles (around 1,600 kilometres).

Female power over a thousand miles: Susie Wolff and Ellen Lohr at the Mille Miglia.

Mercedes-Benz Classic is for the first time entering an all-ladies team. Racing driver and new brand ambassador of “She’s Mercedes” Susie Wolff will be sharing the cockpit of a 300 SL with Ellen Lohr.

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News.

1955: record victory on Mercedes-Benz 300 SLR.

Following the end of World War II, Mercedes-Benz returned to motorsport in 1952 with the newly developed 300 SL racing sports car (W 194). The first race appearance for the 300 SL, with its distinctive gullwing doors, was at the Mille Miglia…

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1931: First victory of a non-Italian.

Mercedes-Benz and the Mille Miglia belong together, in fact they are inseparable. Of particular significance are the overall victories of 1931 and 1955, both of which are defining moments in the motorsport heritage of the Stuttgart manufacturer…

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1931: First victory of a non-Italian.

Mercedes-Benz and the Mille Miglia belong together, in fact they are inseparable. Of particular significance are the overall victories of 1931 and 1955, both of which are defining moments in the motorsport heritage of the Stuttgart manufacturer…

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The vehicles from Mercedes-Benz Classic at Mille Miglia.

Mercedes-Benz SSK 27/170/225 PS (W 06).

Of the six-cylinder compressor sports cars in the Mercedes-Benz S-Series, Type SSK (W 06) was the most exclusive and most fascinating model. The model designation stood for Super-Sport-Kurz (Super Sport Short) and featured a shortened wheelbase alongside its particular sportiness. In the summer of 1928, works driver Rudolf Caracciola immediately won the Gabelbachrennen and the races at Schauinsland and Mont Ventoux with the brand-new SSK. In 1930 and 1931, the SSK accompanied him to victory in the European Hill-Climb Championship. The weight-reduced and further modified 1931 version, also known as the SSKL (Super-Sport-Kurz-Leicht – Super Sport Short Light), likewise achieved spectacular success. Amongst the most important of these was the victory in the legendary 1000-mile “Mille Miglia” race. In April 1931, Rudolf Caracciola was the first non-Italian to win this harrowing road race from Brescia to Rome and back in the SSKL.

In summary: the Mercedes-Benz SSK was a sports car legend that once again exemplified the leading position of Mercedes-Benz.

Technical Data for the Mercedes-Benz SSK (W 06, road version)

  • Production period: 1928-1930
  • Cylinders: 6/in-line
  • Engine capacity: 7065 cubic centimetres
  • Output: 125 kW (170 hp)
  • Output with compressor: 165 kW (225 hp)
  • Top speed: 192 km/h

Mercedes-Benz SS (W 06).

In 1928, the modified Type SS (for Super Sport), a further development of the sports car Type S launched one year earlier, was introduced. The bored-out six-cylinder engine developed now 200 hp (147 kW) in compressor mode.

On 29 June, the car was put to the test for the first time in the Bühler Höhe hill climb, which took place as part of the Baden-Baden motorcar tournament and was handily won by Rudolf Caracciola. Even more spectacular was its next showing in the German Grand Prix for sports cars, which was held on 15 July at the Nürburgring. With a triple victory, the Type SS was immediately able to show what it was capable of. Many other racing successes followed before the SS was added to the sales programme in October.

In addition to the launch of the Type SS, in 1928, the short-chassis SSK with identical technology would go on to write motorsport history. The SSK was developed especially for hill climbs and road races on narrow and curvaceous routes and should achieve two significant successes at the Mille Miglia.

Technical Data for the Mercedes-Benz SS (W 06, road version)

  • Production period: 1928-1933
  • Cylinders: 6/in-line
  • Engine capacity: 7065 cubic centimetres
  • Output: 103 kW (140 hp)
  • Output with compressor 147 kW (200 hp)
  • Top speed: 170 km/h

Mercedes-Benz 300 SL “Gullwing” (W 198).

In February 1954, the 300 SL “Gullwing” celebrated its world premiere at the International Motor Sport Show in New York. The new high-speed sports car was based on the legendary 300 SL sports racing car (W 194) from the 1952 season. A lightweight, stiff space frame supported the engine, transmission and axles. But as with the racing version, it allowed no room for conventional doors, and the gullwings became a distinctive feature of the standard sports car. In any case, the “Gullwing” was a true cutting-edge vehicle: it was the world`s first production passenger car to be powered by a four-stroke engine with petrol injection. That improved not only the efficiency, but also the engine performance. An engine performance of 215 hp (158 kW) – 20 percent more than the carburettor-equipped sports racing version ‒ allowed for a top speed of up to 250 km/h, depending on the final gear ratio used, making the 300 SL the fastest production car of its time and the dream sports car of the 1950s.

At the Mille Miglia 1955, the Mercedes-Benz 300 SL “Gullwing” experienced its motorsport debut and raced to victory in the Mille Miglia, vehicle driven by the John Fitch/Kurt Gessl team in the Gran-Turismo class over 1600 cubic centimetres.

At the Mille Miglia 1955, the Mercedes-Benz 300 SL “Gullwing” experienced its motorsport debut and raced to victory in the Mille Miglia, vehicle driven by the John Fitch/Kurt Gessl team in the Gran-Turismo class over 1600 cubic centimetres.

Technical Data for the Mercedes-Benz 300 SL (W 198)
  • Production period: 1954–1957
  • Cylinders: 6/in-line
  • Engine capacity: 2996 cubic centimetres
  • Output: 158 kW (215 hp)
  • Top speed: 250 km/h

Mercedes-Benz 220 (W 180).

Introduced in early 1954, Type 220, also called 220 a (W 180) internally, was the first Mercedes-Benz six-cylinder model with a self-supporting design. Its modern, spacious “Pontoon” body, which Mercedes-Benz had presented six months earlier in the mid-series model, offered previously unknown spaciousness and comfort. A single-joint swing axle, which had been introduced into standard production with the Type 220, ensured safe handling. Several Mercedes-Benz 220 vehicles participated in the 1956 Mille Miglia in the class of standard special touring cars. In this class, the vehicle chassis and engine could be modified. The Erwin Bauer/Erwin Grupp driver team won its class with a special 220 model: in the racing division headed by Karl Kling, three vehicles were prepared specifically for use in the Mille Miglia. They already had the two-carburettor system of the successor Type 220 S, with which the engine developed approximately 115 hp (85 kW).

Shorter and harder springs as well as modified shock absorbers were fitted for sporty driving. In addition, the driver could change gears via a floor shift, as in the 190 SL – instead of the otherwise fitted column shift.

Technical Data for the Mercedes-Benz 220 (W 180, road version)
  • Production period: 1954–1956
  • Cylinders: 6/in-line
  • Engine capacity: 2196 cubic centimetres
  • Output: 63 kW (85 hp)
  • Top speed: 150 km/h

Mercedes-Benz 300 SL sports racing car (W 194).

When Mercedes-Benz was planning to re-enter motorsports following World War II, sports racing cars were initially the only consideration. This was due to the fact that a new rule was announced in 1954, and the limited resources prevented previous development of a Grand Prix car based on the old formula. The new 300 SL sports racing car (W 194) made use of a number of existing components: the axles, transmission and base engine came from the Mercedes-Benz 300 (W 186) representation saloon. A brand new innovation was the extremely light yet stiff space frame, enveloped by an elegantly arched, streamlined body made of aluminium-magnesium sheet metal. Because the space frame extended relatively high on the sides, the W 194 could not be fitted with conventional doors – and this was how the sports racing car got its characteristic gullwing doors, which were attached at the roof. The car was powered by a 125 kW (170 hp) M 194 inline six-cylinder engine with a displacement of 2996 cubic centimetres.

The new sports racing car achieved a second- and fourth-place ranking in its very first race, the Mille Miglia. After this, one victory followed another: a triple win in the Bern Grand Prix (Switzerland), a spectacular dual victory in the 24 Hours of Le Mans (France) and in the Carrera Panamericana in Mexico, as well as a quadruple victory in the Nürburgring Anniversary Grand Prix, in which an open version of the 300 SL was used.

Technical Data for the Mercedes-Benz 300 SL sports racing car (W 194)

  • In use: 1952
  • Cylinders: 6/in-line
  • Engine capacity: 2996 cubic centimetres
  • Output: 125 kW (170 hp)
  • Top speed: 240 km/h

Mercedes-Benz 180 D (W 120).

The first diesel engine version of the Mercedes-Benz 180 (W 120) had its debut in January 1954. The Stuttgart-based manufacturer thus offered its modern Pontoon saloon with a compression-ignition engine, which initially had 40 hp (29 kW). Until the model upgrading in the autumn of 1959, 114,046 Type 180 D saloons were built. These diesel saloons, which were capable of speeds up to 110 km/h, cannot be compared with the racing and sports cars that raced to overall victory in the Mille Miglia. But the 180 D was an ultra-modern vehicle in due course, with a self-supporting body in the actual “Ponton” form and a “subframe” on which the front wheels guided by double wishbone axles were suspended. And it proved both its strength and reliability in the arduous long-distance race across Italy:

Mercedes-Benz raced several Type 180 D vehicles, and the Helmut Retter / Wolfgang Larcher team handily won the diesel class. Second and third place were also won by 180 D vehicles, thus completing a triple victory in the diesel class.

Technical Data for the Mercedes-Benz 180 D (W 120, road version)
  • Production period: 1954–1959
  • Cylinders: 4/in-line
  • Engine capacity: 1767 cubic centimetres
  • Output: 54 kW (40 hp)
  • Top speed: 110 km/h

Mercedes-Benz 300 SLR sports racing car (W 196 S).

In 1955, Mercedes-Benz won the sports car World Championship with the 300 SLR (W 196 S). This car is essentially a W 196 R type Formula 1 racing car equipped with a two-seater sports car body. The main technical difference is in the engine: the sports racing car, which was not bound by the Formula 1 rule, was powered by a three-litre version of the in-line eight cylinder engine and had cylinder blocks made of light alloy rather than steel. In addition, the 300 SLR did not run on special methanol-based racing fuel, but rather on regular 4-star petrol. The 222 kW (302 hp) power rating, as well as its endurance and reliability made the 300 SLR far superior to its competitors in 1955, which it demonstrated with dual victories in the Mille Miglia, the Eifel race, the Swedish Grand Prix and the Targa Florio (Sicily).

In the 1955 Mille Miglia, Stirling Moss and co-driver Denis Jenkinson (starting number 722) won with a still unsurpassed average speed of 157.65 km/h. The results achieved by this sports racing car are unparalleled even today: the W 196 S won every race started and finished by a Mercedes-Benz 300 SLR.

Technical Data for the Mercedes-Benz 300 SLR sports racing car (W 196 S)
  • In use: 1955
  • Cylinders: 8/in-line
  • Engine capacity: 2982 cubic centimetres
  • Output: 222 kW (302 hp)
  • Top speed: over 300 km/h

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