S. Berliner, III's sbiii.com MERCEDES Continuation Page 2 keywords = Mercedes Benz Daimler Chrysler DaimlerChrysler Gottleib Otto Karl car auto history S SS K L 300 500 540 770 Grösser Grosser Boyer Frick

Updated:   21 Oct 2019, 13:50  ET
[Page created 14 Nov 2003; converted 12 Jul 2011;

    original AT&T Worldnet Website begun 30 May 1996.]
URL:  http://sbiii.com/merceds2.html
[was at "home.att.net/~Berliner-Ultrasonics/merceds2.html"]

S. Berliner, III
Consultant in Ultrasonic Processing
"changing materials with high-intensity sound"

[consultation is on a fee basis]

Technical and Historical Writer, Oral Historian
Popularizer of Science and Technology
Rail, Auto, Air, Ordnance, and Model Enthusiast
Light-weight Linguist, Lay Minister, and Putative Philosopher

note - The vast bulk of my massive Web presence (over 485 pages) had been hosted by AT&T's WorldNet service since 30 May 1996; they dropped WorldNet effective 31 Mar 2010 and I have been scrambling to transfer everything.  Everything's saved but all the links have to be changed, mostly by hand.  See my sbiii.com Transfer Page for any updates on this tedious process.

S. Berliner, III's


Mercedes-Benz Continuation Page 2


  On the Mercedes Main Page:
Mercedes miscellany (following index).
Didja Know Department.
    Differences between K, S, and SS Models.

  On Mercedes Continuation Page 1:

S and SS Survivors - with IDs (moved to this page 09 Jan 01).
Other M-B Survivors of Note (to me).
1924 Type 24/100/140 Photos
Mercedes Benz Bibliography (moved to this page 09 Jan 01).

  On this Continuation Page 2:

Ex-Peck/Brodie/MMA/Boyer 1928 SS Tourer
    [plus update on "recent" history of the car].   new (27 Jun 2013) and rev (21 Oct 2019)
Al Jolson's Mercedes K-S-SS Cars   added (21 Oct 2019)
"K" vs. "K".
540K at Bill Frick's.
SSK at Bill Frick's.
SS & SSK Color Brochure
24/100/140 Specifications

  On the Mercedes Continuation Page 3:

Works History of the Type 24-100/140 and K
Mercedes Model.
More In(en)quiries.

  On Mercedes Continuation Page 4:

Type 770K Grösser Mercedes (moved from page 3 on 05 Dec 05)
Hitler's Mercedes-Benzes

Mercedes and Chrysler inked their $3billion+ merger and DaimlerChrysler AG/Corporation began business on 17 Nov 98 and started trading combined shares on 18 Nov 98; two of my most favo(u)rite cars!

For DaimlerChrysler aquisitions, spinoffs, and other news, refer to the DaimlerChrysler page.

Adtranz, formed Jan 1996, merging rail transportation activities of ABB Ltd. and Daimler-Benz AG took DaimlerChrysler into the railroad business and the sale of the venture to Bombardier, announced 04 Aug 2000, apparently takes them right out again!

WORKS (factory) LINKS {added 05 Mar 2002} -

Daimler/Mercedes/Benz and

Mercedes-Benz History.

note-rt  I have restored this page and those that follow WITHOUT updating them; I hope to do that soon.   new (12 Jul 2011)

DISCLAIMER - my interest in Mercedes/Daimler-Benz, whil(e)(st) perhaps encompassing, is primarily in the S and SS series of the late 1920s and early 1930s; this is not intended to be a full-blown history or chronology of the Mercedes marque. - SB,III

I took many photos (including excruciatingly-detailed shots of engine compartments and dashboards) of S and SS cars (and some K, 380K, 500K, 540K, and 770 cars) back in the '50s.  Some of these include famed cartoonist and driver, Charles Addams, in his S tourer out at the Bridgehampton (Long Island) track.

[I am repeating some of the introductory material from the main and
previous continuation pages here for continuity.]

I located (30 Mar 01) my 1950s files and there are great surprises in store; the files were a bit damp but dried out and I am adding fantastic photos.

In early 1956, I had the incredible fortune to drive the 1928 SS tourer that was featured in the Museum of Modern Art (along with the famed Movado watch) as a supreme example of pure functional beauty.  It was quite an adventure and I've written it up and will add lots more info for M-B enthusiasts as I get the time and inclination.  The car was all burgundy with crimson piping and spokes and an off-white head (top) [my memory on some of this was 'way off!] and I finally found my bureau-top photo (missing since the last move) 07 Jan 01, and it's again missing, as is the post I made of it; instead, I located the original negatives and had prints and scans made.  In the interest of full documentation of a famous and fantastic car [and it was "only" a Sindelfingen (factory) body], I am reproducing all the pictures here, in spite of some being really poor and one being double-exposed (I had a bad habit of winding the film past the last picture and stripping the sprocket holes).  Also, these photos were taken with an ancient Voightlander bellows camera that had only a rudimentary framing lens and a manual distance setting slide; in my excitement, I really messed up some of the shots rather badly indeed (I'm no Alexandre Georges or Jerry Cheseborough, famed M-B photographers).  Also, I cropped many of these photos to save memory and bandwidth, but was very careful not to remove any detail.


As far as I know, the car belonged to D. Cameron Peck when it was shown at the Museum of Modern Art in New York, where it was extensively photographed by Alexandre Georges, and was then bought by Sidney Brodie out on the West Coast, where it was again extensively photographed, that time by Jerry Cheseborough, and then passed to Allston Boyer on Long Island.

Boyer SS a w/ AB
[Photos ca. Feb 56 by and © 1956/2003 - S. Berliner, III - all rights reserved]
(Thumbnail image - click on photo for much larger image.)
Allston Boyer and his car in 1956.

(The missing Kodacolor print, marked that it was printed "Week Ending Mar. 3, 1956"
had changed sadly over the years; that body paint was a true, rich burgundy
and, if the crimson piping shows, I can't see it!)

{The negatives held up much better and prints made from them are fairly true to what I remember.}

Incidentally, that tubular factory front bumper is set wrong; the rearward sweep of the ends should be absolutely horizontal.

Here, just for reference, is Al Jolson with his then-new (or nearly so) S or SS (I'd guess the former - a 1927 S - note the embossed stars on the radiatr shell) tourer with the front bumper set correctly:   added (21 Oct 2019)

Al Jolson and his 1927 Mercedes-Benz S Tourer

[Little did Jolson know where Germany was headed!
See below for more Jolson Mercedes cars.]

Here's me with the Boyer car:

Boyer SS b w/ SB,III
1928 Mercedes-Benz SS and SB,III.
[Photos ca. Feb 56 by and © 1956/2003 - S. Berliner, III - all rights reserved]
(Thumbnail image - click on photo for much larger image.)

There are a dozen more color photos, plus a baker's dozen highly-detailed B&W shots of just this automobile.  Then, there follow two photos from the same era of a 540K at the curb and a dozen photos of a magnificent SSK roadster sitting alongside Bill Frick's speed shop in Freeport (Long Island), New York.  So, here we go:

Boyer SS c

Boyer SS d

Boyer SS e

Boyer SS f

Boyer SS & 49NYer g
'49 New Yorker and '28 SS.

Boyer SS & 49NYer h
'49 New Yorker and '28 SS (note that front bumpers are flush).

Boyer SS & 49NYer i
'49 New Yorker and '28 SS (note that rear bumpers are NOT flush).

Boyer SS j
Note support stick (to prop up hood so it didn't double back and get damaged)
and also note the lubricator on the cowl.

Boyer SS k
Note support stick (to prop up hood so it didn't double back and get damaged).

Boyer SS l
[Artificially lightened - nothing showed under the hood!]

Boyer SS m

Boyer SS n
Note carburetor intake manifold with cooling fins (compressor heats air).
[Photos ca. Feb 56 by and © 1956/2003 - S. Berliner, III - all rights reserved]
(Thumbnail images - click on photos for larger images.)


Boyer SS o
[Photos ca. Feb 56 by and © 1956/2003 - S. Berliner, III - all rights reserved]
(Thumbnail images - click on photos for larger images.)

Boyer SS p

Boyer SS q

Boyer SS r

Boyer SS s

Boyer SS t

Boyer SS u

Boyer SS v

Boyer SS w

Boyer SS x

Boyer SS y

Boyer SS z
There's that blower (standard, not elephant).

Boyer SS -
[Double Exposure]
[Photos ca. Feb 56 by and © 1956/2003 - S. Berliner, III - all rights reserved]
(Thumbnail images - click on photos for larger images.)

On 24/25 Jun 2013, I heard from Dan Lundblad of West Virginia that he had [slightly edited] "purchased this beauty from Ben Moser of Santa Barbara in 1973, and found it necessary to sell it about 6 months later".  He had "always regretted this and {is} curious about what happened to it.  Initially, in order to license it in West Virginia, {he} had to get the title transferred by the estate of Mr. A. Boyers, via his executor.  The car, as purchased, had the same droopy front tubular bumper and Marchal headlites as in the photos from your Internet documentary.  The burgundy paint was checqued, and one of the top bows was cracked.  Documents with the car indicated that sometime in the past, there were camshaft problems.  The engine was not running, and {he} did not attempt a start.  The chassis {number} is 36203, and the engine {number} is 72317" [emphases mine - SBIII].   new (27 Jun 2013)

"Ben Moser apparently had purchased the SS from the estate of Alston Boyer in early 1973.  The owners registration a{nd} a packet of historical data were provided to him by the executor,  Eugene D. Wadsworth, New York attorney.  {Lundblad} did not purchase the car until late 1975.  The title was not transferred to Ben Moser until {Lundblad} purchased the car - {they} had to negotiate some legal hurdles via Mr. Wadsworth, before {he} could get a West Virginia title.  Anyway, {he} found it necessary to sell the SS in 1977, to a Thomas Meade, D.D.S., of Albuquerque, New Mexico."  Dr. Meade got it running; that was the last Lundblad heard of the car and he has the feeling that the SS made its way back to the Fatherland.

Any help adding to this history or locating the car would be greatly appreciated both by Mr. Lundblad and (of course) by me [SBIII].

"K" vs. "K"

The suffix "K" has been used in two different ways by Daimler-Benz to describe Mercedes-Benz cars.  In these pages, especially in what follows, it matters.  In the '20s, "K" stood for "Kurz" (short chassis), as in the SSK and SSKL types.  However, almost immediately after, ca. 1930, while the SSK and SSKL were at the end of their run but still in production, the first-series 770K came out, one of the biggest cars, if not the very biggest, Mercedes ever built, in which the "K" stood for "Kompressor" (compressor).  Without delving deeply, I believe that the latter usage has been consistently applied ever since, most notably to the 380K, 500K, 540K, and later 770K series.


Not having the detailed notes that accompanied the original prints, I can only recall that these photos were taken ca. 1956 and that the 540K, bearing valid 1956 Connecticut plates, was merely parked (facing the wrong way - west) on east-bound Sunrise Highway (U.S. Route 24) in front of Bill Frick's famed speed shop; I must assume I spotted the 540K, screeched to a stop, and then saw the SSK out back.

Frick 540K
Just sitting there on Sunrise Highway (Lawn Guylunders note - Sunrise hadn't yet been widened,
nor divided, nor have the LIRR tracks beyond been raised for the grade elimination project ca. 1960).
[Photos ca. 56 by and © 1956/2003 - S. Berliner, III - all rights reserved]
(Thumbnail images - click on photos for larger images.)

Frick 540K a
That's quite a front end; compare it to the SS (picture C) above and SSK (picture 3) below.
[Photos ca. 56 by and © 1956/2003 - S. Berliner, III - all rights reserved]
(Thumbnail images - click on photos for larger images.)

The SSK was, as I recall, a 1930 model, also with a Sindelfingen (works) body;
it is NOT an SSKL (no lightening holes).

Frick SSK 1
[Photos ca. 56 by and © 1956/2003 - S. Berliner, III - all rights reserved]
(Thumbnail images - click on photos for larger images.)

Frick SSK 2
Might that be a Pinin Farina creation over the windscreen?

Frick SSK 3

Frick SSK 4
Note Studie Hawk in background; the car on the right is shown because, as I remember
the missing notes, it is the very first Cisitalia imported into the U.S.

Frick SSK 5

Frick SSK 6

Frick SSK 7
Note that the bumper is dead-level.

Frick SSK 8
Note MG TD (or TC?) and Woodie in background.

Frick SSK 9

Frick SSK a

Frick SSK b
Note Studie Hawk in background.

It is interesting how small the SSK looks without a frame of reference; it is NOT at all small!

Frick SSK x
[Double Exposure]
[Photos ca. 56 by and © 1956/2003 - S. Berliner, III - all rights reserved]
(Thumbnail images - click on photos for larger images.)

That about does it for the nonce; let's see what else turns up.

Wonder where these cars are now.

As noted above, Al Jolson, the famed singer-actor, had at least three big Mercedes cars of the K-S-SS era:   added (21 Oct 2019)

JolsonK JolsonS JolsonSS
(Two left are thumbnail images - click on those photos for larger images.)
Al Jolson and his 1926{?} Mercedes K or 630, 1927 Mercedes S, and 1928{?} Mercedes-Benz SS

The K or 630 offers several possibilities; it could be a convertible sedan, it could be a convertible limousine, or it could be a cloth-covered, hard-topped (fixed-head) version of either.  I'm inclined to the limo by the reflections in, or through, the right front window.  It also appears to have been fitted or retro-fitted with a Pilot-Ray steerable auxiliary headlamp.  Further, it's rather remarkable that all three cars have basically the same chassis; the K/630 is longer, while the S and SS share a common chassis, the SS has a slightly taller engine (about 1"/25mm - and thus a slightly higher hood/cowl) than the S, and the S and SS share the same basic works tourer body, even though it sure doesn't look like it.  As to that last, closer inspection reveals that the SS actually sports a convertible Victoria body, NOT a tourer.

SS & SSK Color Brochure

[Source:  Daimler Benz Classic Archiv.]

I noticed that my 1975 full-size, full-color reproduction of the undated Mercedes color brochure for the SS and SSK models does not carry any copyright notice - fair game!  Unfortunately, the brochure is huge - 33mm x 24mm (12frac12;" x 9½") and the car images fit the pages bumper-to-bumper so the pages won't quite fit on the platen of my nominally 12" x 9" scanner.  I'm not too keen on piecing, so, for the nonce, here are some teasers until I find another way - the front cover in Mercedes racing silver, page 1 (the title page), page 7 with the SS Offener Tourenwagen (open touring car - my favorite), page 12 with the Technical Oversight (the text ist auf Deutsch) and a chassis view, page 14 cropped to views of the left and right sides of the engine and of the rear axle, page 15 with Technical Data, and page 16 with Results of Proof Trials (racing results):

SS/SSK Broch Cover SS/SSK Broch Pg 1

SS/SSK Broch Pg 7 SS/SSK Broch Pg 12

{scroll away!}
SS/SSK Broch Pg 14

SS/SSK Broch Pg 15 SS/SSK Broch Pg 16

What you're missing is a lot of German text and page 5 with the Cabriolet A, page 9 with the Roadster (so-gennant), page 11 with the SSK (cycle fendered but full weight - no lightening holes for the SSKL, such as shown in the tiny photo on page 16).  The main car pictures are renderings, not photos.  From the bumpers on all but the SSK, I'd guess this was a 1932-33 brochure and the last races noted on page 16 are from 1932; thus this is the last (or one of the last) for this model.  This ended up at Kinkos for a full color scan (it didn't pick up the silver of the front cover, however); here is the entire brochure (the inside front cover, page 2, and both sides of the back cover are blank):

SS/SSK Broch Cover

SS/SSK Broch Pg 1 SS/SSK Broch Pg 3
[Page 2 is blank.]

SS/SSK Broch Pg 4 SS/SSK Broch Pg 5

SS/SSK Broch Pg 6 SS/SSK Broch Pg 7

SS/SSK Broch Pg 8 SS/SSK Broch Pg 9

SS/SSK Broch Pg 10 SS/SSK Broch Pg 11

SS/SSK Broch Pg 12 SS/SSK Broch Pg 13

SS/SSK Broch Pg 14 SS/SSK Broch Pg 15

SS/SSK Broch Pg 16

That's a lot of scanning and posting but it should give you a better flavor of the whole brochure.

I suppose the next step will be to attempt a translation with my sehr schwer und rostig Deutsch (but see below for K model specs.)!


This car is NOT a K model; see Works History of the Type 24-100/140 and K on the succeeding page.

(from Ashley Sametz, 20 Sep 1971 - edited for form, only)
    [Photos on preceding page.])
Engine:	6 cylinder
		bore - 94mm (3.76")
		stroke - 150mm (6.20")
		normal RPM - 2800
		displacement - 6.24 liters (367 cu. in.)
		brake HP - 100 metric (110 American)
			with blower - 140 metric (150 American)
		gas mileage - about 25 liters per 100 kilometers
					(approx. 10-13 mpg)
		oil usage - about 0.8 liters per 100 kilometers
					(approx. 1 qt. per 100 miles)

Crankcase and cylinders - pan made of light metal, upper part of crankcase and
	cylinders cast in 1 block out of light metal.   Cylinder walls made of cast iron.

Cylinder head - made of cast iron, removable.

Crankshaft - chrome nickel steel with 4 bearings.

Camshaft - overhead camshaft driven by a combination driveshaft and worm gear

Valves - overhead valves.

Compressor (blower, supercharger) - activated by pressing down on the accelerator.

Spark - Bosch high voltage magneto ignition.  Spark advance and retard adjustable
	by a lever on steering column.   Firing order 1, 5, 3, 6, 2, 4
	numbering from front to rear of engine.

Carburetor - Mercedes Benz special carburetor for supercharged engines.
	Temperature of air induction pipe can be regulated.
	Settings for jets:  normal - main jet  additional jet  idle
			             140       95              100/28

Cooling - Honeycomb type radiator with water pump and fan.

Oil - pressure oil system supplied by gear pump with distributor.  Additional fresh oil
	pump, visible oil level indicator.

Gas tank - contents 110 liters (about 30 U.S. gallons) with gas gauge and vacuum
	fuel pump.

Chassis and undercarriage:

Transmission - made of light metal, fatsened to engine.  Mechanical gear changing,
	four speeds forward, one reverse.   Mechanical tire pump.

Clutch - multiple disc clutch.

Drive shaft and rear end - universal jointed driveshaft with bevel geared differential.
	Enclosed rear axle.  Rear axle ratios - 1:4 or 1:4.36 with reinforced axle.

Springs - half elliptical, lever shock absorbers in rear.

Brakes - drum brakes, four wheel foot brakes.  Hand brakes on rear wheels only.

Dashboard - speedometer with kilometer counter, switchbox, oil control lamp, 8 day
	clock, pullout hand lamp.

Electrical assembly - generator, starter, battery, 2 headlights, 2 side lamps, tail light.

Weight - 1550 kilograms (about 3,400 lbs) chassis
		        (about 2,600 lbs) body
			   6,000 lbs  total approx.

Top speed - 115 kilometers per hour (68/70 mph with 1:4 rear axle ratio).

Wheelbase - 3750 millimeters (approx. 150").

Width of track - 1430mm (approx. 57.2").

Ground clearance - 220mm (approx. 8.8").

Overall length - 5085mm (approx. 203.4" {17'}).

Maximum width - 1760mm (approx 70.4").

Maximum height - 1900mm (approx. 76" {6' 4"}).

Tire size - 33 x 5.00 inches.

Stay tuned!

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[For those interested in the Chrysler side as well,
see my Chrysler page, et seq.
(with the Walter P. Chrysler story).]

Cyclops fans; see Cyclops on my Automotive pages!


  What happens to all this when I DIE or (heaven forfend!) lose interest?  See LEGACY.


See Copyright Notice on primary home page.

Please visit the main Automotive Page, et seq.

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