• The Mercedes-Benz Logo - A Complete History

Where you learn how the merger between two car companies and a businessman’s daughter gave birth to the three-pointed star logo

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Mercedes-Benz came into existence in 1926, when DMG (Daimler-Motoren-Gesellschaft) - founded by Gottlieb Daimler - merged with Benz & Cie, which was the company started by Carl Benz. That’s when the Mercedes-Benz logo as we know it was created.

The Mercedes-Benz Logo - A Complete History
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You see, Gottlieb Daimler passed away in 1900. That’s when his two sons – Paul and Adolf – took charge of the company. They brought a fresh vision for their father’s business, including a new logo which was born around 1909.

Its exact origins are, however, unclear. Some versions of the story say that the two brothers found a postcard sent by their dad to their mother and in that picture, a three-pointed star marked the location of their father’s house in the city of Deutz, together with the explanation that “one day the star would shine over his factory and bring prosperity.” Other sources claim that the first version of the Mercedes-Benz logo was a gold star inspired by a symbol Gottlieb Daimler used to include in his postcards.

The Mercedes-Benz Logo - A Complete History
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In any case, DMG trademarked the three-pointed star (along with a four-pointed version it never used). But that’s just half of the logo sorted out. The laurels that surround the three-pointed star come from Benz & Cie’s logo, which showed a laurel wreath that encapsulated the company’s name. When the two entities merged on June 28, 1926, the star and the laurels were kept, forming the Mercedes-Benz logo. The company was initially called Daimler-Benz AG.

The Mercedes-Benz Logo – What does it mean and where does Mercedes come from?

Ask Mercedes-Benz and they’ll say that while the logo was initially rooted in the concept of family (see the postcard use mentioned above), it has come to “represent the strength and prevalence of Daimler engines on the land, on the sea, and in the air.”

The Mercedes-Benz Logo - A Complete History
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As for the name Mercedes, it is inspired by Austrian businessman Emil Jellinek’s daughter.

In April 1900, he reached and agreement with DMG for the supply of cars and engines. Jellinek was running the largest DMG dealer and had contacts with the upper-class that would allow him to move a lot of cars to a lot of wealthy people. He was also a fan of racing, which he participated in under the Mercedes pseudonym, after his daughter.

DMG delivered the first Mercedes to Jellinek in December 1900. Jellinek raced it at the Nice Speed Week in France where it secured a couple of race wins, forcing General Secretary of the French Automobile Club to utter the famous phrase: Nous sommes entrés dans l’ère Mercédès (We have entered the Mercedes era).

Tudor Rus
Tudor Rus
Assistant Content Manager - Automotive Expert - tudor@topspeed.com
Tudor’s first encounter with cars took place when he was only a child. Back then, his father brought home a Trabant 601 Kombi and a few years later, a Wartburg 353. At that time, he was too young to know how they worked and way too young to drive them, but he could see one thing – each of them had a different ethos and their own unique personality. As time went on, he started seeing that in other cars as well, and his love for the automobile was born.  Read full bio
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