The Mercedes-Benz Museum is the only museum in the world that can document in a single continuous timeline over 125 years of automobile history from its very beginnings to the present day. On nine levels and covering a floor space of 16,500 square metres, the museum presents 160 vehicles and over 1,500 exhibits. As a place of innovation, it also demonstrates that history can point the way ahead.
The exhibition not only presents the fascinating history of the Mercedes-Benz brand, it also affords illuminating insights into the future. This dual function is also reflected in the architecture of the Mercedes-Benz Museum, designed by the UNStudio of Dutch architects van Berkel and Bos, Amsterdam. The building’s interior is inspired by the double helix structure of the DNA spiral that carries the human genome. This in turn illustrates the Mercedes-Benz brand’s philosophy – to continuously create radically new products to advance the cause of human mobility.
During a two-hour tour of the exhibition, visitors experience a unique journey through automotive history. Transported by lift to the uppermost level of the museum, the visitor arrives back in the year 1886, where two museum tours gradually spiral their way down through the extensive collection and back to the museum exit.
The first of the tours consists of seven Legend rooms which narrate the chronological history of the brand. The second tour groups the wealth of vehicles on display into five separate Collection rooms, which thematically document the breadth and diversity of the brand portfolio and collection. The visitor can switch from one tour to the other at any time. Both tours finish at the banked curve entitled Silver Arrows – Races & Records. The exhibition is rounded off by the Fascination of Technology display, which offers a glimpse into day-to-day work at Mercedes-Benz and also presents topics concerning the future of the automobile.
World-class architecture meets unparalleled automotive history – filmed with a drone.
The entire Mercedes Legend comes to life in seven chronologically ordered arrangements of exhibits. Here, visitors meet the vehicles representative for special eras of automotive development, from the beginning of automotive history and the birth of the Mercedes brand to fascinating models from recent past and present. Each vehicle shown is embedded in its contemporary context presented by additional exhibits, documents, photos, or pictures from its days. The level of “Races & Records” ends the tour through the Legend area and impressively shows the fascination of motorsport. Here, the exhibits are presented on an awe-inspiring steep-bank curve which runs through all of this floor.
Parallel to the Legend rooms in which exhibits are arranged scenically under artificial light, the bright Collection rooms show their exhibits in daylight. Here, the exhibits are not arranged in their chronological context but in a topical one. Thus, the Gallery of Voyagers shows vehicles from all epochs which made voyages both big and small safe and convenient.
Fascination of Technology.
With a history dating back to 1886, Mercedes-Benz is the world’s oldest motor manufacturer. The brand’s ongoing success story right through to the present day demonstrates, more than anything else, that vehicles from the Mercedes-Benz brand prevail at all times, despite the greatest turbulences caused by technical revolutions, ever-changing customer demands and new legal requirements. The foundation for this success in the past and in the future was – and will continue to be –laid, above all, by the people in the company. Mercedes-Benz employees develop new vehicle generations with the highest precision, ensuring automotive manufacture at the highest quality level. They also adopt new, unusual approaches in research and present the results in vehicles which, more often than not, cause quite a stir. The exhibition section named “The Fascination of Technology” grants an insight into the complex processes of vehicle development, giving visitors access to the fascinating world “behind the star”.
Facts and Figures.
|Architect||UNStudio van Berkel & Bos, Amsterdam|
|Display conception||Prof. HG Merz, Stuttgart|
|Height of construction||47.5 meter|
|Ground area||4,800 square meters|
|Gross weight||110,000 tons|
|Number of triangular panes of glass||1,800 (none being identical)|
|Length of the wire system laid in the concrete||630 kilometre|
|Length of the heating pipes laid in the concrete||100 kilometre|
|Number of lamps in the museum||12,000|
|Exhibition space||16,500 square meter|
|Legend Rooms surface||9,100 square meter|
|Collection Rooms surface||5,300 square meter|
|Total number of exhibits||1,500|
|Total number of vehicles||160|