The German automotive industry has long been known for producing some of the finest cars in the world. From luxury models such as Mercedes Benz to affordable family vehicles like Volkswagen, BMW, Audi, and Porsche, Germany has produced some of the most iconic automobiles ever created.
With over 100 years of history behind them, these German car companies have become household names around the globe. Today, they continue to innovate and produce top-quality vehicles at competitive prices.
Mercedes Benz is a German luxury automobile brand. The history of Mercedes-Benz traces back to 1883 when Karl Benz designed a four-wheeled carriage powered by a gasoline engine. He called it the “Motorwagen”. This invention sparked interest among many people, including Gottlieb Daimler, who modified the design and built the first practical motorcycle in 1886.
In 1899, Daimler founded the Daimler Motoren Gesellschaft mbH (“German Automobile Company”) (DMG), later renamed Daimler Motoren Gesellschaft AG (“DMG”). At the same time, Karl Benz joined DMG as technical director. After the First World War, DMG became part of the German General Motors Corporation (GMDeutsche).
In 1926, GMDeutsche and Daimler-Benz agreed to merge their automotive operations, forming the Daimler- Benz Aktiengesellschaft (DBAG). The merger resulted in the creation of what we know today as Mercedes-Benz.
BMW is one of those companies that you either love or hate, and there are few people out there that don’t know about the brand. It has always been known for producing some fantastic cars over the decades, but it’s also become synonymous with reliability problems and being a difficult car to work on.
The company was formed by Karl Rapp in 1913, and originally produced aircraft engines and aero engines. When he left four years later the company became known as the Bayerische Motoren Werke or Bavarian Motor Works. In 1933, BMW acquired the Opel marque, renaming it Auto Union AG. This lasted until 1945 when the Nazis took control of Germany and forced the merger of Auto Union with Daimler-Benz. After World War II, Daimler-Benz split off the Mercedes division and merged it with BMW to form the present-day company.
Today, BMW produces luxury cars, SUVs, sports cars, motorcycles, trucks, buses, commercial vehicles, and even trains. It’s also got a strong presence in motorsport, including Formula One, touring car racing, rally driving, and motorcycle racing.
Porsche is one of the best-known brands in the automotive industry. Founded in 1931 by Ferdinand Porsche, the brand is headquartered in Zuffenhausen near Stuttgart in Baden-Württemberg, Germany. In addition to automobiles, Porsche produces motorcycles, commercial vehicles, marine propulsion systems, power tools, and industrial equipment.
The name “Porsche” is derived from the initials FP or Ferdinand Porsche. He had been working since 1925 as a mechanic for Daimler-Motoren Gesellschaft, where he developed his first vehicle. This was a four-stroke internal combustion engine named Type 356. After World War II, he founded his own automobile construction firm.
In 1951, he began building the first true sports car, the 901/2, which was powered by a rear mid-engine layout. Over the next few decades, Porsche built some of the most successful racing cars ever, including the 911 GT1, Turbo, Turbo S, Carrera 4, Carrera RS4, Cayenne Turbo, Panamera, Boxster, Macan, Cayman, and many others.
Today, Porsche is still based around three core popular models: the 911, the 718 Boxster, and the 718 Cayman. These are joined by the Mission E electric crossover concept and the Taycan sedan, along with several plug-in hybrids like the e-Tron and the Mission E Cross Turismo. The company also offers a range of hybrid and fully electric vehicles, such as the ID.3 and the upcoming Mission E.
The German auto manufacturer Audi was founded in 1909. Its motto is “Vorsprung Durch Technik,” meaning “Advancement Through Technology.” This slogan reflects the company’s focus on technology and innovation. Audi is one of the largest automakers worldwide. In addition to automobiles, it manufactures motorcycles, commercial trucks, buses, coaches, construction equipment, and industrial engines.
Audi is a member of the Volkswagen Group. As part of the group, Audi participates in numerous cooperative ventures including research and development projects, joint marketing activities, and product development. Audi is headquartered in Ingolstadt, Germany.
Volkswagen is the flagship brand for Volkswagen Group and is considered one of the most reliable automotive brands on the global market today.
The company was originally founded in 1937 by the German Government and was created with the goal of providing the German populace with a reliable car that is affordable for the average driver. This led to the creation of the original “Beetle”, which was so successful it continued to remain in production for over 50 years.
Later, in 1959 the company introduced the modern Golf model, which became the best-selling vehicle worldwide within just six months of launch. In fact, there are now more than 400 million vehicles produced every year, making it the world’s largest automaker.
Today, the Volkswagen Group consists of eight different companies including Audi, Bentley, Bugatti, Lamborghini, Skoda, SEAT, Škoda Auto, and Volkswagen Passenger Cars.
Adam Opel AG boasts 11 manufacturing sites in seven countries. This makes it one of the world’s largest automotive companies. The German carmaker produces passenger cars and light commercial vans. But Opel isn’t just about making cars—it also sells components to third parties around the globe. And there are even some people in Germany who think that Opel should make tractors.
The original name of the company was “Adam Opel GmbH.” Founded in 1862, the company began as a sewing machine manufacturer. By 1866, however, the company had branched out into the manufacture of bicycles. Then came the automobile industry.
In 1899, Adam Opel became the first to build his own car. He called it the “Alfa,” and he produced it alongside the “Goliath.” These early cars were very successful. They could reach speeds up to 15 miles per hour.
After World War II, Opel developed into a major player in the global auto market. Today, Opel continues to grow and develop. It now offers over 150 models across five brands: Vauxhall, Holden, Mokka, Corsa, and Astra.
A German car brand based in Bavaria, Alpina produces some of the most exclusive vehicles in the world. But you probably don’t know much about them. You haven’t heard of Alpina because there aren’t many of them being produced; the company doesn’t make enough money off them to justify the effort. In fact, Alpina makes fewer than 2,000 cars per year—and even those are highly customized versions of BMW and Mini models.
But Alpina is known for producing some of the best-looking vehicles on the road today, including the BMW M2 Competition Coupe. Each Alpina car leaves BMW’s production line with a unique serial code that distinguishes it from its Bimmer equivalent.
In 2004, Roland Gumpert founded his eponymous automotive design firm. His goal was simple: To bring the next generation of high-performance sports cars to market. The company began work on the Apollo, a street legal version of Gumpert’s famed racing prototype. The Apollo promised a level of performance that no one else could match.
Unfortunately, Gumpert never managed to build enough of the Apollo to make it into production. In fact, he only built five units, which sold out within hours of launch. But Gumpert wasn’t done building cars. A few years later, he launched the Nathalie, a hydrogen-powered supercar that used a methanol fuel cell to generate electricity.
And now, Gumpert is back again with another high-performance vehicle called the Hydrogen1.
The story of German car manufacturer Isdera begins with a man named Eberhard Schulz, who founded the company in 1969. He wanted to make his own car; something he could call his own. And so, out came the Isdera Commendatore 111i.
This little number had an interesting history. It was designed by former Porsche engineer Hans Mezger, who took over the project in 1971. In 1972, it was presented to the public at the Frankfurt Motor Show, where it won the prize for the best concept car.
In 1973, the Commendator 111i went into production, and it became one of the most successful cars in the world. With a price tag of $36,500, it sold out within three months. By 1975, there were already 2,000 Commendatore on the road.
Today, Isdera is still making Commendatore, but now they are called Commendatore GT. They are powered by electric motors and range from 200 km (124 miles) to 300 km (186 miles). There are even plans to produce a hybrid version.