Carrera Panamericana Winner – Mercedes-Benz W194 Photo Gallery

Hans Klenk (left) and Karl Kling with their Mercedes-Benz 300 SL W 194.The original winning car from the 3rd Carrera Panamericana Mexico in November 1952 is to return to the scene of its great triumph. The 300 SL racing sport car (W 194) was temporarily removed from the “Races and Records” display at the Mercedes-Benz Museum in Stuttgart, in order to join the Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG and set off once again along a part of the original route through Mexico.

The 3rd annual Carrera Panamericana was one of the top international races of the 1952 season. The double victory achieved by Mercedes-Benz there ranks as one of the brand’s most spectacular successes. Karl Kling and co-driver Hans Klenk won the race, a long-distance event covering 3111 kilometres, against strong international competition at an average speed of 165.011 km/h. Second to cross the finishing line, also driving a Mercedes-Benz 300 SL, were Hermann Lang and co-driver Erwin Grupp.

Kling’s collision with a vulture at 250 km/h, which left his car with a smashed windscreen and Hans Klenk with head injuries, went into the annals of racing history. In addition to replacing the screen, the mechanics also immediately fitted eight thin vertical metal bars to protect vehicle and driver in the event of a similar collision – still the vehicle’s most distinguishing feature.

1952 Mercedes-Benz 300SL W194 – Photo Gallery

The 1952 Carrera Panamericana-winning team Karl Kling and Hans Klenk.
The 1952 Carrera Panamericana-winning team Karl Kling and Hans Klenk.
1952 Carrera Panamericana Mexico: Mercedes-Benz racing team
1952 Carrera Panamericana Mexico: Mercedes-Benz racing team (from left): Hermann Lang, Erwin Grupp, Karl Klink und Hans Klenk with a Mercedes-Benz 300 SL racing coupe (W 194), John Fitch and Eugen Geiger with a Mercedes-Benz 300 SL Roadster (W 194).
After the unpleasant encounter with a vulture at the third Carrera Panamericana Mexico, 1952
After the unpleasant encounter with a vulture at the third Carrera Panamericana Mexico, 1952: the winning team of Hans Klenk (left) and Karl Kling in a Mercedes-Benz 300 SL (W 194 series).
Mercedes-Benz 300SL W194
Mercedes-Benz 300SL W194
Winners Karl Kling and Hans Klenk with their Mercedes-Benz 300 SL after the legendary encounter with a vulture.
Winners Karl Kling and Hans Klenk with their Mercedes-Benz 300 SL after the legendary encounter with a vulture.
Winners: Karl Kling and Hans Klenk (hidden) won the third Carrera Panamericana Mexico in 1952 driving a Mercedes-Benz 300 SL (W 194).
Winners: Karl Kling and Hans Klenk (hidden) won the third Carrera Panamericana Mexico in 1952 driving a Mercedes-Benz 300 SL (W 194).
Karl Kling and Hans Klenk - Mercedes-Benz 300 SL W 194
Enthusiastic welcome for the winning team of Karl Kling and Hans Klenk in their Mercedes-Benz 300 SL (W 194).
The Mercedes-Benz 300 SL winner of the 1952 Carrera Panamericana back on the track.
The Mercedes-Benz 300 SL winner of the 1952 Carrera Panamericana back on the track.
Front view of the Mercedes-Benz 300 SL W194, winner of the 1952 Carrera Panamericana.
Front view of the Mercedes-Benz 300 SL W194, winner of the 1952 Carrera Panamericana.
Another view of the Mercedes-Benz 300 SL W194, winner of the 1952 Carrera Panamericana.
Another view of the Mercedes-Benz 300 SL W194, winner of the 1952 Carrera Panamericana.
Mercedes-Benz 300 SL W194 with the modern Mercedes-Benz SLS
Mercedes-Benz 300 SL W194 with the modern Mercedes-Benz SLS.

[Source: Mercedes-Benz]