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AMG celebrates its 50th birthday in 2017

2017-01-19 13:34

50TH YEAR: Mercedes-AMG will be celebrating its half century of existence in 2017. Image: QuickPic

Affalterbach, Germany - In 2017 AMG, the company founded by Hans-Werner Aufrecht and Erhard Melcher, is celebrating its 50th anniversary.

Today, as a wholly owned subsidiary of Daimler AG, the Affalterbach-based company represents the sporting spearhead of the group. In this anniversary year, with an eye to the future, Mercedes-AMG will carry on the success story of what began as a two-man company.

With almost 100 000 units delivered in 2016, AMG heads into this milestone year with record figures under its belt.

Expanding the family

The strategic broadening of the portfolio in recent years has also led to the development of new groups of customers, says Merc. Hence, the company's global success is not solely based on the popular eight-cylinder models of the 63 series.

READ: Monstrous Mercedes-AMG E63 S now available in SA

The compact 45 series models, along with the wide range of 43 series models, are finding favour with many customers, says the automaker, while placing AMG's modern product portfolio on a broad, solid basis. 

Hypercar with F1 technology

Alongside its continuing strategic product initiative, Mercedes-AMG is setting a further landmark in 2017 by giving a fascinating peek into the future performance in the form of a street-legal hypercar. Offering unadulterated Formula 1 technology for the road, Mercedes-AMG says its hypercar is thus the first commercially available vehicle with F1 hybrid powertrain and road approval.

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With a system output of over 750kW and four-wheel drive with all-electric front axle, it marks the pinnacle of what is currently technologically feasible. In terms of output and efficiency, this hypercar points the way to "AMG Future Performance", says Mercedes-Benz.

This is the only indication of what AMG's new hypercar might look like. Image: QuickPic

Milestones in AMG's history

  • 1967: AMG was founded in Burgstall in 1967 by Hans-Werner Aufrecht and Erhard Melcher as an "engineering office, design and testing for the development of racing engines". The letters stood for Aufrecht, Melcher and Großaspach - the birthplace of Aufrecht.

  • 1971: AMG became famous overnight, with the red-painted AMG 300 SEL 6.8 winning its class in supreme style at the Spa Francorchamps 24 hour race while finishing second in the overall classification.

  • 1976: The plant in Affalterbach was founded. In a newly constructed building, the racing engine workshop evolved into a manufacturer of sports saloons and coupés.

  • 1984: Melcher completely independently developed a cylinder head with modern four-valve technology, the innovative engine being used as a 5.0-litre V8 in the Mercedes-Benz 500 SEC. The principle of "one man, one engine" was valid from the outset.

  • 1986: the new cylinder head was used not only in the AMG version of the S-Class, but primarily in the saloon and, from 1987, in the coupé of the mid-size class (W124). Rated at 265kW, the car was christened "The Hammer" by the specialist media in the USA.

  • 1988: AMG not only constructed Mercedes-Benz 190 E racing cars, but was also responsible for their deployment in the German Touring Car Championship (DTM).

  • 1990: Collaboration with Mercedes-Benz began. In 1991, AMG embarked on the development and production of sports versions of Mercedes-Benz vehicles.

  • 1993: The C36 AMG, launched in 1993, was the first vehicle on the market to result from the collaboration agreement with Daimler-Benz. With sales of 5000 units up to 1997, it became the first best-seller.

  • 1996: The C36 AMG was the first official F1 safety car.

  • 1999: DaimlerChrysler owned 51% of AMG.

  • 2001: The newly developed five-speed automatic transmission in the C32 AMG was paired with the 3.2-litre supercharged V6 engine.

  • 2005: Mercedes-AMG became a wholly owned subsidiary of Daimler AG.

  • 2009: The Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG was the first vehicle to be developed entirely in-house by the sports car and performance brand.

  • 2011: AMG branched into motor racing with the SLS AMG GT3. At the same time, this vehicle marked the entry of Mercedes-Benz into exclusive customer racing sport.

READ: Coulthard tames Merc's beastly AMG GT3 at Kyalami

  • 2014: The Mercedes-AMG GT was the second sports car to be developed entirely in-house by Mercedes-AMG. 

With its entry into the compact segment and its 43 series vehicles, AMG widened its portfolio while winning new groups of customers.

  • 2015: With almost 70 000 units, Mercedes-AMG set a new sales record.

  • Since 2016: At the ADAC Zurich 24h race at the Nürburgring, the first four places went to teams competing in the Mercedes-AMG GT3.

With almost 100 000 units delivered, Mercedes-AMG in 2017 heads into the year of its 50th anniversary on the back of a new sales record.

With the AMG GT C, Mercedes-AMG is expanding its sports car portfolio to six models plus the customer sports AMG GT3 racing car. In under three years, the second vehicle to be developed entirely in-house has spawned a family of sports cars.

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