Mercedes celebrates centennial of maiden win

First Mercedes Grand Prix win 100 years ago: Lewis Hamilton and Heikki Kovalainen with th Original 1908 Benz Race Car in the Drivers' Parade The French Grand Prix in Magny-Cours this coming weekend marks the 100th anniversary of the first ...

First Mercedes Grand Prix win 100 years ago:

Lewis Hamilton and Heikki Kovalainen with th Original 1908 Benz Race Car in the Drivers' Parade

The French Grand Prix in Magny-Cours this coming weekend marks the 100th anniversary of the first Mercedes Grand Prix win. On the 7th July 1908, Christian Lautenschlager drove his Mercedes Grand Prix race car to victory in the French Grand Prix in Dieppe. On the occasion of this special anniversary, Vodafone McLaren Mercedes drivers Lewis Hamilton and Heikki Kovalainen will drive an original 1908 Grand Prix car in the drivers` parade the Benz which in 1908 finished second.

Facts and Figures

The 1906 French was Grand Prix the first ever car race named Grand Prix.

In 1908, the race was held over 10 laps of almost 77 kilometres each; total race distance 769.889 kilometres, 48 participants, 23 finishers.

Lautenschlager won after 6hrs55min43.8sec with an average speed of 111.117 km/h.

For comparison: The average speed in the 2007 French Grand Prix in Magny-Cours was 203.679 km/h.

Technical specifications of the 1908 Mercedes Grand Prix race car: Four-cylinder in-line engine, displacement 12,824 cc, twin camshaft below.

Output: 135 hp at 1,400 rpm, top speed 160 km/h.

The Daimler engine company (DMG) with the brand Mercedes and Benz & Cie. have been competing companies at that time; they merged in 1926.

Lautenschlager's win was the first out of 104 Mercedes-Benz Grand Prix wins. 40 out of these victories have been achieved until 1939.

Following the victorious Formula 1 debut on 4th July 1954 in Reims, France, Mercedes-Benz won a total of nine World Championship races until the end of 1955, in addition to this also the 1954 Berlin Grand Prix which was not part of the F1 World Championship.

Since the Silver Arrow comeback of the new era with the Grand Prix win in Melbourne, Australia on 9th March 1997, the partnership McLaren and Mercedes-Benz has won 54 out of 195 Formula 1 races.

Lewis Hamilton took the most recent Mercedes-Benz Grand Prix win in Monaco on 25th May 2008.

-credit: daimler.com

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About this article
Series Formula 1
Drivers Lewis Hamilton , Heikki Kovalainen
Teams Mercedes , McLaren