1896: Gottlieb Daimler and Carl Benz develop the first motorized vehicle with a loading platform. The engine has an output of a proud 4 PS. However, this invention is the start of something big: Vans from Mercedes-Benz are born – and the way for the transporter is paved.
The van is such an integral part of the traffic on our roads that it has become almost invisible. Yet no matter how inconspicuous it may be, it is also essential. Because it helps us to handle one of the hardest challenges life has to offer: day-to-day life. For more than 120 years. It all began with the L 319. 60 years ago the former Daimler-Benz AG presented the first “fast transporter” at the IAA in Frankfurt, heralding the launch of a successful era.
The Mercedes-Benz L 319 was the first van developed independently by Mercedes-Benz and celebrated its premiere in the year 1955. It went on to become the predecessor of numerous, successful van generations from Mercedes-Benz.
The first facelift of the bestseller Sprinter 313 CDI takes place in February 2000, five years after its market launch. In particular, the appearance of the front section is modified. This includes the bumper, the radiator grille and the headlights.
At the beginning of 2000, the Sprinter underwent fundamental changes within the framework of model maintenance. The Mercedes star is now integrated into the bonnet, the headlights and indicators are more streamlined. The interior features a newly designed dashboard with integrated gear lever and new instrument cluster.
Johannes Reifenrath’s Mercedes-Benz James Cook from the year 1981 is a truly unique classic vehicle: The campervan is the 222,222nd vehicle from Westfalia and slumbered in Cinderella sleep for years.
Photos: Kai Knörzer, Matthias Just