Right from the start, the Mercedes-Benz name was synonymous with excellence. One of the car maker's earliest vehicles, the 1931 Mercedes-Benz 170, distinguished itself as the world's first production car to offer a technology that was nothing short of extraordinary for the day including four-wheel independent suspension.
The 1950s witnessed the introduction of the Mercedes-Benz 300 SL "Gullwing," a sports car that has been described as being the world's first supercar. With its dramatic styling and race-bred technology, the 300 SL reigns today as a classic coveted by collectors worldwide. The decade also saw Daimler-Benz making strides in the area of safety technology. The company's Mercedes-Benz 220's were the first vehicles to incorporate its patented "crumple zone" body design, created to absorb impact in the event of a crash.
In 1963, the company cemented its reputation as the home of automotive luxury with the launch of the Mercedes-Benz 600. The elegant, luxurious car was also available as a limousine and featured an ahead-of-its-time air suspension system and a V8 engine that boasted 300 horsepower. The decade also saw the launch of the Mercedes-Benz 350/450SE/SEL 6.3. This full-size sedan went from zero to 60 in under seven seconds, distinguishing itself as the quickest luxury car is its day.
The 1970s saw the birth of the brand's storied S-Class line of vehicles, opulent salons and coupes that coddled passengers with powerful engines and a long list of luxury features. The decade also saw Mercedes continuing on the cutting edge of safety technology, by being the first to offer antilock brakes in its vehicles.
Daimler-Benz's safety advancements continued in the 1980s. Its cars were the first to offer airbags and traction control. The manufacturer also raised the bar in terms of ride comfort and handling when it introduced multilink rear suspension. The technology debuted on the compact Mercedes-Benz 190 E, and it remains a vital component of the company's chassis engineering to this day
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