S. Berliner, III's sbiii.com MERCEDES Continuation Page 3 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:   28 Jul 2013, 14:40  ET
[Page created 23 Apr 2004; converted 13 Jul 2011;

    original AT&T Worldnet Website begun 30 May 1996.]
URL:  http://sbiii.com/merceds3.html
[was at "home.att.net/~Berliner-Ultrasonics/merceds3.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 3


  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 Mercedes Continuation Page 2:

Ex-Peck/Brodie/MMA/Boyer 1928 SS Tourer.
"K" vs. "K".
540K at Bill Frick's.
SSK at Bill Frick's.
SS & SSK Color Brochure
24-100/140 Specifications

  On this Continuation Page 3:

Works History of the Type 24-100/140 and K
Mercedes Model.
More In(en)quiries,
    with Charles Addams' 1927 S Tourer.   new-link-add (28 Jul 2013)

  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 (EXCEPT for a new inquiry; 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 NOT repeating some of the introductory material from the main and
previous continuation pages; go there for continuity.]

[Material on the Type 770K which was here has been moved to a separate section on page 4.]

Works History of the Type 24-100/140 and K

My suspicion that the Smithsonian's model of a so-called 630K was never any such type was born out and greatly amplified in a response to a related question posed to DaimlerChrysler 's Mercedes-Benz Museum in Stuttgart (edited only very slightly):

My correspondent outlined the basic facts regarding the so-called "630 K" model; first of all, he confirmed that I was right that this was never an official model designation.

In the end of 1924, the Mercedes (NOT yet Mercedes-Benz) 24/100/140 hp model was introduced; after the merger between Daimler and Benz it was renamed Mercedes-Benz 24/100/140 hp.  As a more or less internal or at least rather informal designation "6-liter model" was also used, although the capacity was 6.3 liters right from the beginning.

A more powerful and sporty version was introduced in early 1926, still before the merger, as 24/100/140 hp Model K, "K" standing for "kurzer Radstand", i.e. short wheelbase.  After the merger, this model was of course also renamed as Mercedes-Benz....

This very sporty model which was the world's fastest touring car at the time not only had a wheelbase which was 350 mm shorter but also underslung springs on the rear axle instead of the cantilever springs of the regular-wheelbase version (which was changed to underslung springs in autumn 1927).  Moreover, it had a more powerful engine due to an increased compression ratio and dual ignition with a second set of spark plugs operated by battery ignition.  Although this more powerful engine was used in the Model K right from the beginning, the model designation based on the performance was the same as for the regular-wheelbase version and changed to 24/110/160 hp Model K no earlier than in early 1929.

The Model K seems to have been regularly equipped with outside exhaust down pipes, a feature that became usual for the regular-wheelbase version no earlier than in Autumn 1927 (but was available as an option before).

To come back to the question of model designations: In February 1928 (when the S Type already had succeeded the Model K - although the Model K remained in production until 1929, the designations of all Mercedes-Benz passenger car models were changed by introducing the three-digit capacity-based number thus turning the 24/100/140 hp into the 24/100/140 hp Type 630 or just Type 630; this does not apply to the Model K which was never called 630 K or 630 Model K.

The matter becomes even more complicated by the fact that from October 1928 the regular-wheelbase version of the 24/100/140 hp Type 630 was also offered with the more powerful Model K engine; this version which became dominant instead of the regular-engined version immediately, was called Type 630 with K-Engine and is today sometimes called 630 K informally - meaning 630 with K-engine.

Thus, the beautiful yellow-coloured model car clearly is a Model K, or to be more precise, a 24/100/140 hp Model K and NOT a 630 K; this last-called designation should be omitted and was never used officially for ANY of the versions described.

And, last but not least, regarding my photographs of the Sametz car, it seems to be that it is a regular-wheelbase 24/100/140 hp and NOT a Model K - please compare the wheelbase/tire diameter ratio with the one of your yellow model car.  Even the factory photo you show on your page above the Sametz car is obviously NOT a Model K with Saoutchik body but a regular-wheelbase 630 with K-engine instead.

So, there you have it from the source!  Let me thank the Museum staff here for their splendid cooperation.

A gentleman wrote me from Spain on 21 Nov 2005 that he has a 630 with a K engine that had been acquired (by his uncle?) in the '30s and which been shot at by anarchists during the first days of the Spanish Civil War (1936) and is completely original, even to a bullet hole in its left front door:

Span 630 w/ K
(cropped and lightened from photo from Spain - all rights reserved to owner)

This picture was not terribly clear; I had hoped the owner hablo inglés enough (mi no comprende espagñol) to send a better shot (pun).  He does; no sooner said than done (what a car!); he replaced the above image and added this one:

Span 630 w/ K 2
(cropped and lightened from photo from Spain - all rights reserved to owner)

This car is actually grey-green, not blue, with black wings (fenders) and light shells, a black border, and a fine white accent line (barely visible under the belt line).  You can see the bullet hole in the door in the white circle and there appears to be another just under the door, above the kick plate (it doesn't look like an entry lamp) and perhaps yet another just above that one.  As it happens, the gun used in the attack was a shotgun, not a rifle, loaded with both buckshot and finer pellets in the same cartridge, so one single shot created havoc.

That same Spanish family picked up a used 1919 Mercedes-Knight 16/45 in 1924 and still have that one, also!  Although my interest really is primarily focused on the 1926-1938 period, this one is so beautiful I show it here (there's the 630 in the background in the garage - more like a showroom!):

Span 19 M-K 16/45 in Span 19 M-K 16/45 out
(cropped from photos from Spain - all rights reserved to owner)

The Mercedes-Knight used an engine built under the patents of the American, Charles J. Knight, licensed by Daimler Motoren Ges. in 1909, which had a sleeve valve, in which the entire cylinder liner moved up and down and rotated to uncover intake and exhaust ports, doing away with poppet valves.  The D-B Museum in Stuttgart has a gorgeous 1921 Mercedes-Knight 16/45 tourer on display.

Can you imagine driving a luxury car in inclement weather with controls OUTSIDE the driver's compartment?  Oh, well; he's only a hired hand (a very wet, cold one)!

[Material on the Type 770K which was here has been moved to a separate section on page 4.]

Mercedes Model

Now, here's an incredible model, 22" (56cm) long, of what we thought was an unidentified straight eight Mercedes coupé of ca. 1926-30 or so, built by Rivarossi and bearing the Sindelfingen-Karosserie nameplate (but read on):

RivMBModel1 RivMBModel2

RivMBModel4 RivMBModel3
[photos (some cropped) courtesy of owner - all rights reserved;
thumbnailed images - click on picture for larger image]

The owner is undecided whether to try to restore it or put it up on Ebay (!); I suggested that the model would be far more valuable as is.  It appears to be a mid-30's 380K, 500K, or even a 770K; my references aren't handy but it has the later independent front and rear suspensions, with the chassis-mounted differential (in place) with floating half-shaft axles (missing) and I recall the 540K having an "X" frame.  Can anyone identify it accurately?  And how!  It is, in fact a 1936 500K!

The level of detail is nothing short of amazing; the steering and the brakes are operable and the tires have the makers name and all data molded in (Englebert)#.  The rear axle assembly, doors, front wings and lights and such, radiator shell, running boards, spare(s), and interior detail are missing.

It was suggested that it was a dealer's showroom model; I tend to doubt that.  With that kind of detailing, it was more likely a presentation piece for a head of state or for Daimler-Benz's General Manager upon the introduction of a new model.

Four more photos came in; here are the requested detail of a wheel and hubcap, and three ¾ views of the chassis with the body mounted:

RivMBModel1 RivMBModel2

RivMBModel4 RivMBModel3
[photos (some cropped) courtesy of owner - all rights reserved;
thumbnailed images - click on picture for larger image]

# - the tires have the following information molded on:

Renforcé Made in Belgium Fabriqué en Belgique 6.50/17 Ambassador Englebert 6944102

In addition to all that, the owner reports that there is a SIX (6) pointed star within a star with a circle in the center - that makes me wonder if this is an unauthorized model, NOT associated with Daimler-Benz (especially not with a SIX-pointed star!).

Well, now!  On 14 Jan 2006, I got an e-mail from C. Mak in Hong Kong with the information that it is, in fact, not only a 500K, ca. 1935, but a Rivarossi-Pocher model and possibly one of only a few built (hardly, as it turns out).  He is well along restoring his and sent these photos:

RivPocher500K1 RivPocher500K2
[photos courtesy of C. Mak - all rights reserved;
thumbnailed images - click on picture for larger image]

Until recently, Pocher was in business making exquisite 1/8 scale models of this caliber that are still available in most top-line hobby shops.  There is a kit, identified as K85, on Ebay now (16 Jan 05) as Item #6029571203, at over 400BP or US$700 and still under reserve.  Mr. Mak and others identify the model shown as a "500K/AK"; there never was a model 500K/AK or 500AK - it is properly a "500K Cabriolet A", the "A" meaning it has no rear quarter windows, only door windows.  However, a Montréal hobby shop, Hobby World of Montreal advises that "The Pocher company has been sold.  They are at present in the process of being restructured." and shows a Pocher "540K" model at 640mm length (25" across bumpers) with 1,516 parts.  Brady Ward - Scale Autoworks shows many versions of the Pocher 500K.  The Smithsonian's 1/18 model is of yet an even different version, with a rumble seat and both a rear-mounted spare AND two side mounts.

More In(en)quiries

Here are more in(en)quiries about Mercedes cars:

An original SSK (in Europe) is being restored and the owner is in desperate need of parts (28 Apr 05):

1.	front axle (damaged in an accident)
2.	all dashboard instruments
3.	Bosch ZR6 magneto
4.	windscreen (SSK)
5.	brake parts
6.	head (top) frame
7.	tail lights
8.	sparewheel support
9.	toolboxes (all three)
10.	vacuum system on firewall
Can anyone help?  Please let me know.

Here's a new inquiry; can anyone trace the interim history of this 1927 S Model Tourer ("Sportwagen" - supposedly a works "Rennwagen") once available through Gooding & Company at their 20-21 Aug 2011 Pebble Beach Auction:

Gooding 27 S
(photo courtesy of Gooding & Co. - all rights reserved)

Here is what is supposedly known about this car:
It was apparently delivered new to a Mr. Payne in upstate New York (Payne was supposedly a big client of Mercedes, reputedly ordering a new car every year).

According to Warren Kraft of Cold Spring Harbor, NY, Allston Boyer owned the car during the late 1940s and early 1950s@.

At the time it was dark red, as it is today.

Restored by Zumbachs in NYC.

The car next appeared with Austin Smithers of Greenwich, CT (he may have also had a home in NYC).

Smithers subsequently posted an ad in 1961 with the AACA; this ad, from a 1961 "Gazette", may be that one:

(image courtesy of Gooding & Co. - all rights reserved)
[thumbnailed image - click on picture for larger image]

The next known owner is David Tunick, also of Greenwich, CT.

Roughly 40 years ago, Henry Petronis bought the car.

Too weird!  I worked with Henry Petronis at Pall Corporation (and subsidiary Aircraft Porous Media) in Glen Cove, LI, NY, at that time (ca. 1970), including the day his entire collection was driven piecemeal to Pall's then new APM facility in Pinellas Park, Florida, by Pall shop workers.  I never knew he had any such car. 

@ - Further, Warren Kraft notwithstanding (and I knew him then and respect him immensely), I was in Allston Boyer's multi-car garage in Upper Brookville sometime ca. Feb 1956 and the only old Mercedes he had was the famed ex-Cameron Peck/Steve Brodie/Museum of Modern Art 1928 SS Tourer (with full doors!) detailed on this website.  At that time, it was painted a deep burgundy with crimson wheels, brake drums, and piping.  If I recall correctly, the SS later went to Harrah's.  In full sunlight, it photographed as red (as in Alexandre Georges's and Jerry Cheseborough's iconic portrait shots).   rev (24 Jul 2012)

The car pictured appears to be identical to the rather-well-known S car owned, and driven around in the parking area of the old Bridgehampton race track ca. 1950-60, by famed macabre cartoonist Charles Addams.  My rather certain recollection is that it was painted a very dark green, much darker than BRG, more like Pennsylvania RR Dark Green Locomotive Enamel (Brunswick Green), possibly with black fenders. I took at least one B&W picture, full left as I recall, of Addams manoevering downwards to the left in the hilly lot under a canopy of trees but have been unable to locate the print or negative so far (I have not exhausted my files however).

I am still in touch with a few of the surviving "Pall Dinosaurs", some of whom might have been the drivers for Henry Petronis's legendary caravan.

Does this car have the mini-rear-tonneau doors of the white factory 27 S "Rennwagen"?

MBTypS MBSModell
(pictures courtesy of Daimler-Benz - all rights reserved)
[thumbnailed images - click on pictures for larger images]

No; it supposedly has a front door - in the vernacular, this I gotta see!

Also, thanks to Goodings, here is a photo of the Addams car:

(unprovenanced Web image)
[thumbnailed image - click on picture for larger image]

Not at all the same car - note the full front fenders with side mounts and the Castagna-style guard strips on the rear fender.  Note also, however, the deep green color of the body and fenders/wings, just as I remembered it (and I definitely DO remember a bare metal hood/bonnet).  Also, would Addams, a bit of a purist, have painted his brake drums (which should be bare cast iron, to maximize heat dissipation)?   rev (15 Dec 2012)

That's Chas. and either his beautiful first wife, Barbara Jean Day, or, his second wife, Barbara Barb, both of whom resembled his cartoon character Morticia Addams, or posssibly even his third wife, Marilyn "Tee" Matthews Miller (depending on when the picture was taken), in the car.   added (28 Jul 2013)

Can anyone identify the date and location of the Addams photo?  In one of several Net postings, this Bill Giltzow photo is identified as being at Bridgehampton in 1951, titled "Addams in the 1927 Mercedes enjoys a moment with his wife Barbara".  That ties it to Barbara Jean Day.   rev (28 Jul 2013)

In a VanderbiltCupRaces.com exclusive, Howard Kroplick reproduces a three-minute film documenting the Third Annual Bridgehampton Races held on 09 Jun 1951, a rare 16-mm film provided by Walter McCarthy and the Long Island Old Car Club which, as of Jul 2009, had not been shown in over 25 years.  "The Vintage Exhibition Run" starts at 0:23 and runs through to 1:13, when coverage of the actual race itself begins.  From 0:54 to 0:55, an S Mercedes runs past:   added (28 Jul 2013)

(still picture montage by SB,III from W. McCarthy/H. Kroplick film - all rights reserved)

Look at that big, totally-inappropriate, American (or American-style) bumper!  That's gotta be Chas. Addams' '27 S!

Further, it ties down when I was out at the Bridge and snapped my missing picture!  Now, to find it!

I found this old (ca. 1960) Mercedes-Benz Club of America membership pin:

03 Feb 2005 photo by and © 2005 S. Berliner, III - all rights reserved)

I'd forgotten I even WAS a member once. let alone that I still had this pin; the photo didn't come out well and, in trying to reshoot it, I managed to drop the pin such that it skittered away and flew into the output end of my printer!  That, in turn, is a dry-toner jobbie, not exactly what I would prefer to turn upside down and shake!  One of these days - - - .

[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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