In the late sixties at Daimler-Benz, the world is still in order. Neither oil shortage nor pollutant debate prevent the concern to develop. Racing has been abandoned in 1964. Actually, the in-house technology is not the right e.g. no lightweight construction and no advanced suspension. That's just starting with the '/8', just the smaller series, the rather weaker engines.
For two years already two Daimler engineers, Hans Werner Aufrecht and Erhard Melcher try to satisfy the ambitious private clients with customised versions. 1967 for both the double workload is too great and they start their own as 'AMG', the initials of their surnames and the place Großaspach.
Erhard Melcher mentioned in an interview just the direct injection of the 300 SE as an approach for tuning. However, this is reappeared only in recent times. Racing is, after establishment of their business the passion of both and indeed one appears with one for that time quite heavy car of more than 1600 kg (series more than 1800 kg) in 1971 at the 24 Hours of Spa Francorchamps. The most powerful Daimler V8 originates with 6.8 liter the Mercedes 600 and does provide 'only' 309 kW (420 HP), but already nearly more than 600 Nm.
Legendary are stories, with which difficulties the engine were procured from a car accident-damaged and the rest of the vehicle. Not everything can be explained without some factory support. Also the engine tuning and testing belongs under the rubric 'adventurous'. Likewise the fact that the car is fairly smashed a week before the race at the Hockenheimring.
There is talk of overtaking prestige on the long straights and comfort for the drivers thanks to power steering and air suspension. But also mentions that next to the brake system the tyres represent probably the weakest link of a chain. The long distance race ends for the hitherto completely unknown company with the class win and the undoubtedly spectacular second place in the overall standings.
And when the car itself not exactly excels as series winner this season, but it gets a few good starting positions. The next year it needs to switch to the manufacturers' world championship because of changes in the rules of the European Touring Car Cup, but do not get the basic problems under control: for the vehicle weight not always appropriate technology.
The car ends at Matra, an aviation group with racing affinity and vehicle construction as an experimental subject for enormous accelerations. The company AMG prospers because henceforth it sell owners of the alreadyimmensely powerful 300 SEL 6.3 tuningkits with up to almost 30 per cent more performance. Of course, the two company owners remain faithful to racing.
From today's perspective, one might think that only eight or also later twelve cylinders were of interest for AMG. Two developments suggest otherwise. Firstly, tuner always rather prefer the lighter basic variant and secondly, only these is to get shortly after the beginnings of the company AMG with the already mentioned above, progressive rear axle construction.
So much development work goes into the initially smallest stroke-8 model and from 1988 in the 190 (W 102). It is therefore in each case the 'small' Mercedes for the the upgraded offered (not as tuning designated) packages sell well. Interesting for Mercedes-driver is perhaps also in those days that they are not bound to spectacular changes of the body and gear sets.
You may already have guessed, which hopes arise in the crew, emigrated to Affalterbach in 1978, as Daimler-Benz, with the help of the company Cosworth, certain 190 helps to an absolutely modern engine control. Additional rear wings mean a nearly complete reversal of previous group principles. One wants regain more younger people for a Mercedes.
This allows Hans-Werner Aufrecht, meantime principal owner further plans. His credo is anyway to satisfy customer desires. Meanwhile, also Mercedes-customers demand more visual adaptation to the increased engine power.
From 1988 AMG undertakes racing participations on behalf of Mercedes. In the German Touring Championship (1992, 1994 and 1995er) and International Touring Champignonship (1995), the C-Class comes to great honors with more than 60 victories. 1997 follows the completely by AMG redesigned CLK GTR with winning the FIA GT Championship. 1998, all 10 races of the series will be won.
Also since 1988, the company is beginning to enforce the change towards a even the quality criteria of Mercedes satisfying company. The reward is the cooperation agreement of 1990 which leads 1999 about the majority to the full acquisition by the parent company in 2005. 10/12