Celebrating 125 Years of Cars in the US…Wait, Mercedes?

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While today about 2.2 billion people celebrate the 2013th birthday (or thereabouts) of their religion’s founder, this year, those who cover the manufacturing industry are celebrating a century and a quarter of the American automobile.

This is a story about Daimler, later Mercedes, of course. But did you know that there once was an American Mercedes company?

125 years ago, Gottlieb Daimler and William Steinway established the Daimler Motor Company in New York with the help of German-born William Steinway (of musical instrument fame) who had convinced Gottlieb Daimler to build Mercedes cars here in the USA.

american mercedes ad

With a top speed of around 14 mph, the first production models of American Mercedes hit the “roads” in 1905 – demanding a princely sum of $10,000 which, considering inflation since 1905, would cost around $263,000 in 2013.

That price tag is probably about the same that a fully optioned Designo edition of the V12-powered S65 AMG will fetch in 2015.

silver mercedes on road

The V8-powered 2013 S63 shown above starts at around a “mere” $150,000. Either car, if unrestricted, is capable of speeds over 200 mph.

If you have an original American Mercedes from 1905, you can probably trade it for a few of the new cars…which would make quite a sweet Christmas gift to yourself.

Read more here, and Merry Christmas from MetalMiner!

Thomas Kase, lead analyst for MetalMiner’s sister site Spend Matters, is also our resident auto buff.

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