Author(s): Hartmut Lehbrink
In the galaxy of automobile makers, the star in Stuttgart shines brightly. Arising from the accumulation of technology, design, and sports, a firm was created in 1886 whose economic force has made it a player of international significance.The concise and compelling texts shed light on manifold aspects of Mercedes history, from engineering to the economic-political power exerted by this world-wide concern - richly illustrated with a variety of historical documents. Throughout the 600-page book, naturally, one thing stands out: the vehicle itself. Rainer Schlegelmilch's photographs veritably pay homage to the embodiment of the German dream car. The long series of models, complete with their technical specifications, the peaks of sporting successes, the story of the founders and the makers, the designers and the race car drivers - all this and more is gathered in this opulent volume.
There is a persistent rumour that Rainer Schlegelmilch's birth was initiated on the back seat of a Mercedes Benz 170V. Whether or not this is the source of his ongoing affinity to anything that has four wheels, his fascination with cras is vividly expressed in his photographs. How do you get from German and English phiology to automotive journalism? Chalk it up to car racing: the appearance of the Silver Arrows (Silberpfeile) in Spa, Zandvoort and at the Nurburgring, says the Germanist and Anglicist Hartmut Lehbrink. Numerous books on automobiles and racing penned by Lehbrink testify to the long-term impact of these early experiences.