First, an answer to the question most asked of Mercedes-Benz AMG owners: What does the AMG mean? Literally, it symbolizes Aufrecht, Melcher and Großaspach. Aufrecht is for Hans Werner Aufrecht, Melcher is for Erhard Melcher. Both men were Daimler-Benz engineers in the 1960s. Großaspach is the name of Hans Werner Aufrecht’s birthplace and hometown.
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Back to Hans and Erhard; these two hard-working guys were toiling away (on a 300E racing engine) in the Development Department of Daimler-Benz when the automaker decided to discontinue all motorsports activity. You think that stopped these two? Not a chance. Aufrecht and Melcher relocated their research laboratory (shop) to Aufrecht’s house in Großaspach, Germany.
A co-worker of Aufrecht and Melcher started the German Touring Car Championship (DTM). Utilizing a version of the 300E racing engine developed by Aufrecht and Melcher, he won the DTM ten times. This great feat granted public credibility to Aufrecht and Melcher’s reputation for building sustainable, high-performance engines.
Hans and Ebhard took this reputation, along with their vision for producing a performance road car, and left Daimler-Benz to pursue their own firm.
Headquartered in a former mill, the Aufrecht Melcher Großaspach Ingenieurbüro, Konstruktion und Versuch zur Entwicklung von Rennmotoren (Aufrecht Melcher Großaspach engineering firm, design and testing for the development of racing engines) was developed in 1967. By then they had relocated to the town of Burgstall. The upgraded engines quickly became a necessity for private racing teams.
The AMG name gained global recognition when the AMG Mercedes-Benz 300 SEL 6.8 took the class championship (and second place overall) in the 24-Hours of Spa. Shocking teams with lighter race cars, the heavy, luxury sedan provided an outstanding level of competition. AMG also expanded into other Mercedes-Benz models. Consumers were afforded customized features that appeared to have no end. This customized platform allowed AMG to grow to a medium sized company and to secure a greater number of non-European clients.
With approximately twelve employees, AMG again relocated. This time to a workshop with office space in Affalterbach, Germany.
With the development of a new independent cylinder head, AMG became an official engine manufacturer for Daimler-Benz. The innovative cylinder head was outfitted with four valves per cylinder.
The Hammer, an E-Class coupe equipped with a 5.0-liter V8 AMG engine, received worldwide fame and achieved legendary status in the United States.
As partners in the world of motorsports, Daimler-Benz and AMG began working together. A sterling example of their success in this endeavor is the AMG 190 race car. Campaigned by AMG and supported by Daimler-Benz, the AMG 190 won fifty DTM victories between 1988 and 1993.
Marking a true milestone in AMG history, a contract was signed between Daimler-Benz and AMG. This gave AMG access to Mercedes-Benz dealerships, worldwide. Greater consumer awareness led to a company expansion with a third production plant. AMG now employed more than 400 people.
AMG was officially recognized as a trademark by the U.S. Patent Office. The Mercedes-Benz C 36 AMG was introduced as the first model to be jointly produced by Daimler-Benz and AMG.
Hans Aufrecht shifted a majority stake in the steadily expanding company to Daimler-Chrysler Auto Group on January 1. Aufrecht’s firm, H.W.A. Auto Group, assumed control of the company’s motorsport department. The 200 skilled employees of H.W.A. Auto Group work in close conjunction with Mercedes-Benz Motorsport to manage the two companies long-standing interest in the DTM.
Daimler-Chrysler acquired the remaining shares of AMG; allowing Mercedes-Benz AMG to enjoy an even greater degree of the auto group’s global resources.
Mercedes-Benz AMG currently employs more than 1,700 people in its Affalterback plant. The AMG reputation for building high-performance, luxury vehicles continues to grow. With more than fifty precision-built models currently in production, the AMG legend expands daily.
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