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.