Name Critic rates Mercedes

Our Rating
Background:Recently some students asked me about the Latin roots and origin of the name Mercedes, as in Mercedes-Benz, the elite German car model from Daimler-Chrysler. Coincidentally, we were reviewing their famous star logo at about the same time, and of course, we have to give this name and logo both full points.

One of the first big dealers of Daimler cars was Emil Jellinek. In particular, he was the first to put in large orders to the factory, and to push Wilhem Mabach (another nameplate we are seeing recently) to engineer even lighter and faster cars. This was in 1900, quiet a while before people like Henry Ford were in business in the USA. To race these new models, Emil named his racing team “Mercedes racing”, after his lovely daughter with the Spanish name meaning “mercy” and he soon became known as “Monsieur Mercédès” in racing circles.

When the cars were fitted with bigger engines, Daimler-Mercedes was born in 1902 and the Mercedes trademark was born. Emil even officially changed his name to Emil Jellinek-Mercedes, perhaps the first time in history a man was named after his daughter! Emil went on to be an Austrian diplomat but always loved cars and racing. For more details on this story please visit the Mercedes Benz website.

Does your name have to be reflected in your logo? Definitely not in this case. The Mercedes/Daimler Benz logo is one of the most powerful and recognizable symbols in the world. And yet it’s origins are very simple. Look closely. It is a propeller inside a wheel. The company wanted to imply they make engines that drive propellers (for planes and ships) as well as wheels. And a great, simple and elegant logo came into being that has survived the test of time.
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