Resounding success after 100,000 miles in 30 days

The vehicles were driven by three teams of six drivers, including the former DTM contestant and current FIA Formula 1 Safety car driver Bernd Mayländer, with each driver taking the wheel for about 2 hours, 10 minutes between refuelling stops. In total, the record drivers had to stop 966 times in the temporary pits set up alongside the track; refuelling and the obligatory visual check of the vehicle took around 2 minutes on average. Servicing, including the replacement of operating fluids and wear parts, was performed using the customary service interval indicator in the cockpit. Each vehicle required servicing 10 times in the course of the entire run. The 26-strong team of mechanics changed the engine oil, air and diesel filters during each service stop. Project manager Jochen Haab: "Our vehicles ran like clockwork. Our mechanics likewise completed the routine servicing and maintenance in a record-breaking time, contributing in no small part to this magnificent achievement."

In addition to the world records over 100,000 km plus 50,000 and 100,000 miles, the three international driver teams set other records***:

*** All records subject to confirmation by the FIA

Praise from the independent FIA

The world-record run took place under the supervision of the FIA, which sets strict rules for tests of this kind. The participating vehicles were selected at random, sealed and shipped to the USA by the FIA officials at DaimlerChrysler’s Sindelfingen plant. Before, during and after the record run, the test vehicles were monitored continuously by the FIA until the world record was recognised officially. In accordance with the globally recognised regulations, the extent of any repairs which may be performed is limited and the replacement of entire assemblies such as the engine, transmission or exhaust system is not allowed. The three Mercedes E 320 CDI models had no difficulty in meeting these requirements as no major faults occurred during the record run. After the finish, USAC1 president Rollie Helmling who was assigned by FIA to monitor the attempt on the speed record expressed his pleasure as well. "Of all attempts to break speed records carried out under our supervision, the record run by Mercedes certainly belongs to the most impressing ones," he enthused. "I am especially satisfied by the open and helpful way of the staff at Mercedes. At any time and place, we had access to all areas."

Part and parcel of the model range in Europe

Advanced diesel vehicles which are equipped with diesel particulate filters and comply with the EU4 exhaust emissions standard make excellent sense, both economically and ecologically, and are ideally suited to all vehicle categories, as a glance at the current European range of Mercedes Benz diesel models confirms. In terms of both performance and comfort, diesel engines are firmly established as the equals of petrol powerplants. No less than 20 models on sale in Germany, Austria, the Netherlands and Switzerland already feature a diesel particulate filter as standard, while summer 2005 will see 40 Mercedes Benz models equipped with this technology. This means that, worldwide, the Stuttgart-based company will be offering more vehicles with diesel particulate filters than any other manufacturer. Mercedes Benz introduced the particulate filter in autumn 2003 and to date has delivered around 140,000 vehicles with this exhaust technology.

1 United States Auto Club

The success story of Mercedes diesel passenger cars began 70 years ago

Mercedes Benz is regarded as the pioneer of diesel technology. As early as 1935, the company officially presented the world’s first standard-production diesel passenger car in the form of the 260 D. Other milestones on the way to today's advanced, agile diesel powerplants include the introduction of turbo technology in the seventies, the first particulate filter system in 1985 and the premiere of the common-rail diesel in 1997. The consistent effort which Mercedes Benz has put into the evolution of diesel technology over the last 70 years has helped it attain the high regard which it enjoys around the world today. Future developments by the Stuttgart-based company will make the diesel even more attractive, powerful and environmentally compatible. This commitment is acknowledged by customers: Mercedes Benz has already delivered more than seven million diesel-engined passenger cars; the market share of diesel models is set to rise further in future reflecting the growth seen over the past few decades.

Published : 13/05/05 Author : Melanie Carter

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