Where Did the Name “Mercedes” Come From? Who is Emil Jellinek?
Where Did the Name “Mercedes” Come From?
The name Mercedes was a contribution of Emil Jellinek.
Who is Emil Jellinek?
Emil Jellinek was born into a wealthy family living in Leipzig, Germany in the year 1853. Shortly after birth his family moved to Vienna, Austria. Emil was considered a poor student and began working for a railway company at the age of 17. It was only two years before he fired for racing trains. Emil Jellinek then decided to become a diplomat as well as a businessman and made his living selling goods from North Africa to Europeans. He found great success in selling goods.
How did Emil Jellinek Become Interested in Automobiles?
Emil entered into a number of business ventures, one of which was selling French cars. This increased Jellinek’s interest and he became a automobile enthusiast. Emil managed to buy a handful of his own cars, one of which was a Benz Patent Motor Car. The Benz Patent Motor Car is often referred to as the world’s first practical automobile. In 1898 Jellinek bought two Daimler Phoenix cars. Jellinek began selling Daimler cars to wealthy individuals.
Emil Jellinek as an Automobile Racer
Jellinek began racing his Daimler Pheonix. His Phoenix was faster than the competition and enjoyed each victory. Even though he was doing well as a racer he desired an even faster car. Jellinek made a deal with Daimler for a line of automobiles to began being made to Jellinek’s own standards. Jellinek was adament that these cars needed to be designed by Wilhelm Maybach. Jellinek began selling and racing these cars with great success.
“Mercedes” was Born
Emil Jellinek chose to call these new cars designed by Wilhem Maybach and produced by Daimler, “Mercedes”. Mercedes was the name of Emil Jellinek’s daughter. She sadly died at the age of four. Emil Jellinek was a superstitious person and considered the name “Mercedes” good luck. He named just about everything he could Mercedes. He named his estate “Mercedes” and even used “Mercedes” as his pseudonym when he raced his cars. Jellinek titled these cars designed by Maybach quite informally. It was in 1900 that Jellinek began calling his cars “Mercedes”. In 1902 “Mercedes” was filed as a trademark and in 1903 Emil Jellinek legally changed his last name to Emil-Jellinek.