1894 Benz Velo
Saves the coachman, the expensive equipment, maintenance and entertainment of the horses.
An original headline of a 1894 advertisement by Benz & Co.
Registration : The Netherlands
Year of fabrication: 1894
Chassis number: 1887
Engine number: 2125
Get to know the car!
First production carThe little motorcar that Carl Benz built in 1885 and patented in January 1886 was the world’s first practical car that went into series production. By 1893 a total of 69 vehicles had been made at Mannheim, Germany, by Benz et Cie, all the early cars being three-wheelers. However, in 1893 the substantial four-wheeled Victoria, Vis- à -vis, and Phaeton models were introduced and a smaller ‘Velociped’ was soon added to the range, the first example of this type being sold to a customer in Dresden in April 1894, and the Velo (as it was generally known) soon came to account for about 60 per cent of production.
A substitute for the horseThe layout of Benz cars with their horizontal rear-mounted single-cylinder engines and primary drive by belts drew on established engineering workshop practice, but nevertheless from the very beginning the cars were designed as a complete entity and they owed, except in appearance, to carriage practices. So successful was the basic design that before the turn of the century it was only changed in detail and over 2,300 Benzes of all models had been sold by the end of 1900. Benz created his motorcars for a public that was familiar with horse-drawn road vehicles and the 1894 Sales Catalogue for the Patent-Motor-Wagon “Benz” enticed custom with the slogan: Ersatz für Pferde – a substitute for the horse.Whether such advertising influenced sales or not, there were customers for Benz cars right across the world, with cars being exported widely throughout Europe, including Russia, as well as to some unlikely destinations such as Argentina, India, Java, Mexico and Singapore.
American MarketThe strongest export market was France where the Benz agency was held by Emile Roger who had begun his association with Carl in the 1880s. Roger sold on average about 30-40% of Benz annual production and also contributed to the design of the cars. The water condenser that was fitted transversely behind the seat to all cars from late 1895 onwards was a Roger patented design. He also explored the American market, making a visit to New York in August 1895 and selling there the three large cars that he had taken with him. These were the first Benzes seen on the East Coast, although Hieronymus Mueller of Decatur, Illinois, had imported a Vis-à-vis direct from Mannheim in April 1895.
Veteran runsFor the popular veteran runs such as London to Brighton this is a capable, original and reliable tour car. The current owner finished the London to Brighton run in ’96.
The car is after 30 years ownership ready for its new custodian to add new memories and rallies to the cars history.
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