The History of AMG®

 

 

—– The AMG® story is one of passion and perseverance of two engineers that started as underdogs who would later go on to dominate the road and the track. This same passion is in the DNA of every Mercedes-AMG®—–

Two Men, Three Letters


AMG® Founder - Hans Werner Aufrecht
AMG® Founder - Erhard Melcher

 

The story began in the mid-1960s: through the hearts of two passionate Mercedes engineers, Hans Werner Aufrecht (pictured left) and Erhard Melcher (pictured right). They started working on a racing engine that would be placed in the Mercedes 300 SE sedan in the Development Department at Daimler-Benz. Before Aufrecht and Melcher had a chance to showcase their new engine, Daimler-Benz decided to discontinue all motorsport activities. Yet that didn’t stop them from working on the engine in their spare time at Aufrecht’s house in Grossaspach.

In 1965, they entered the 300 SE engine in the German Touring Car Championship and went on to win ten races! They saw an opportunity to push the limit of what daily driving is and discover the true limits of automotive performance.

In 1967, Aufrecht and Melcher left Daimler-Benz to venture into a business together forming AMG®, using the first letter of their last names, A for Aufrecht, M for Melcher, and the first letter of Aufrecht’s birthplace, GroBaspach. Their goal was to use what they learned at the track to make road cars faster.

 

The story began in the mid-1960s: through the hearts of two passionate Mercedes engineers, Hans Werner Aufrecht (pictured top) and Erhard Melcher (pictured bottom). They started working on a racing engine that would be placed in the Mercedes 300 SE sedan in the Development Department at Daimler-Benz. Before Aufrecht and Melcher had a chance to showcase their new engine, Daimler-Benz decided to discontinue all motorsport activities. Yet that didn’t stop them from working on the engine in their spare time at Aufrecht’s house in Grossaspach.

In 1965, they entered the 300 SE engine in the German Touring Car Championship and went on to win ten races! They saw an opportunity to push the limit of what daily driving is and discover the true limits of automotive performance.

In 1967, Aufrecht and Melcher left Daimler-Benz to venture into a business together forming AMG®, using the first letter of their last names, A for Aufrecht, M for Melcher, and the first letter of Aufrecht’s birthplace, GroBaspach. Their goal was to use what they learned at the track to make road cars faster.

AMG 300 SEL 6.8 in the the 1971 24-hour Spa-Francorchamps.

Their next project was turning another 300 SE Sedan into a race car. They replaced the engine in the 300 SEL with a new 6.8 L. Known as the Red Pig, it made its debut at the 1971 24 Hours of Spa-Francorchamps in Belgium. It won first place in its class, and finished second overall. This victory laid the foundation of AMG® and its place in motorsports where enthusiasts go to modify and tune their Mercedes vehicles.

One Man, One Engine - placard with AMG®'s engine builder signature

Nine years later, in 1976, AMG® relocated from a garage in Burgstall to Affalterbach, where its headquarters is still located to this day. It’s inside this facility where the philosophy “One Man, One Engine” was born. For their entire history, every single one of AMG®’s V8 engines has been hand-built. Each craftsman has their own set of tools and builds one engine at a time, from start to finish. After each engine is built, an individualized placard is placed on the engine cover with the engine builder’s signature. One of AMG®‘s most well-known builders is Michael Kübler, who has built over 4,000 engines, including the Pagani V12 engines, the AMG® GT3 racing engines, and the V8 biturbo engines. Take a look at his Instagram for a glimpse of his journey at Affalterbach!

 

AMG® 300 SEL 6.8 together with other high-performance vehicles from Mercedes-AMG history.

In 1986, AMG® placed a 5.6-liter V8 engine in an E-class to create the AMG® 300 E 5.6. Called the Hammer, it achieved legendary status across the world, as it did zero to sixty in five seconds and had a top speed of 178 miles per hour, making it the fastest German production vehicle at that time.

After the success of the Hammer, Daimler-Benz worked out an agreement with Aufrecht and Melcher in 1990, so AMG® cars could be sold and serviced at Mercedes Benz dealerships around the world.

In 1993, the first car jointly developed in the new Mercedes-AMG® partnership was the C 36 AMG®, with a straight-inline 6 engine. It exceeded all expectations and surpassed sales targets. In 2005, Mercedes-AMG® eventually became a 100% subsidiary of Daimler AG, and serves as the high-performance brand for Mercedes-Benz.

AMG® achieving success in DTM, Formula 1 with the SLS AMG® GT3

AMG® continued to have major successes in touring car championships, DTM, FIA GT and customer motorsport with the SLS AMG® GT3, Mercedes-AMG® GT3, and Mercedes-AMG® GT4 dominating the track. AMG®’s entry as Petronas into Formula 1 in 2012 solidified the motorsport gene into AMG®’s DNA, utilizing F1 to develop technology that would eventually transfer to road vehicles.

AMG® 6.0-liter biturbo V12 engine won Best Performance Engine in 2004.

Not only is AMG® having success on the race track, it has won numerous awards and recognition for the design and performance of its vehicles. Notable achievements such as the AMG® 6.0-liter biturbo V12 engine winning the 2004 International Engine of the Year Award for “Best Performance Engine” and the SLS AMG® winning the “iF Product Design Award” in 2010, showcase how AMG® only delivers the best of performance.

 

Mercedes-AMG® has since continued to enhance and expand its portfolio to include a broad and diverse range of sedans, coupes, SUV, roadsters, and supercars.

With over 30 models, Mercedes-AMG® has the perfect vehicle for every customer.

 

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