1937 Mercedes-Benz W25 Avus Stromlinie

In 1937 the organizers of the Avus Race decided to drop the requirement of compliance with the 750 kg formula in force at the time, but to allow a free formula without any weight limit. Mercedes-Benz used this opportunity to fit the DAB V 12, 5.6 litre engine that was originally designed for speed record attempts – with over 730 hp, but too heavy for the 750 kg formula – into a W 25 chassis.

In addition to the V 12 engine, an aerodynamic body similar to that used for record cars was added to help cope with the high-speed Avus track in Berlin, which in 1937, for the first time had a steep bend. Manfred von Brauchitsch was nominated to drive the Avus W 25, and he finished the second qualifying round in first place. He had to drop out of the race, however, due to a gear lever defect. On the straights he reached speeds of up to 380 kmh.

In Detail

tagssilver arrow, golden era
submitted byRichard Owen
typeRecord Car
built atStuttgart, Germany
engineMD 25 DAB, 60 Degree V12
positionFront Longitudnal
aspirationTwin Supercharged
valvetrainDOHC 4 Valves per Cyl
displacement5577 cc / 340.3 in³
bore82 mm / 3.23 in
stroke88 mm / 3.46 in
power563.8 kw / 756 bhp @ 5800 rpm
specific output135.56 bhp per litre
bhp/weight621.71 bhp per tonne
body / frameAluminum over U-Section Pressed Steel Frame
driven wheelsRWD
front tires6.25×22
rear tires7.00×24
front brakesLight -Alloy Drums w/Hydrualic Assist
rear brakesLight -Alloy Drums w/Hydrualic Assist
steeringWorm & Nut
f suspensionDouble Wishbones w/Coil Springs, Hydrualic Shock Abosrbers
r suspensionDe Dion Axle w/Torsion Bar Springs, Hydrualic Shock Absorbers
curb weight1216 kg / 2681 lbs
wheelbase2725 mm / 107.3 in
front track1473 mm / 58.0 in
rear track1412 mm / 55.6 in
length6300 mm / 248.0 in
width1850 mm / 72.8 in
height1200 mm / 47.2 in
transmission4-Speed Manual
top speed~362 kph / 224.9 mph