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How Did North Korea Obtain Luxurious Maybach Limousines?

How Did North Korea Obtain Luxurious Maybach Limousines?

Daimler Claims No Knowledge on North Korea’s Auto Fleet

In recent auto news, spectators have pointed out that Kim Jong-un cruises about on his summits in Mercedes luxury vehicles. As everyone knows, Maybach is basically an even more luxurious Mercedes, at a much steeper price. Daimler AG, the Stuttgart-based company, states that the company has no knowledge on how North Korea obtained these vehicles. Currently, the UN has sanctions in place to prevent North Korea from the sale of luxury goods. This rule includes all luxury automobiles, such as Mercedes-Benz. So, how did North Korea obtain these vehicles? Probably from another country that doesn’t care for the UN sanctions.

Honestly, these vehicles aren’t brand new – so it seems like Kim is riding around in someone else’s leftovers. It could be China, it could be Russia, but honestly, nobody truly knows – except the people involved in the trade. So, let’s not point fingers… yet!

Mercedes Maybach S600 Pullman Guard & S62 Models

Mercedes Maybach S600 Pullman Guard - North Korea's Kim Jong-un Waving from Limo - Side Window View - REUTERS - EuroDrift

Mercedes Maybach S600 Pullman Guard – North Korea’s Kim Jong-un Waving from Limo – Side Window View – REUTERS – EuroDrift

The news surrounding North Korea’s use of Daimler vehicles points towards two specific models. Not surprisingly, both of these models are the crème of the crop – Maybach. Kim Jong-un may not have the newest vehicles, but he has a sense of style. The Mercedes Maybach S600 Pullman Guard and Mercedes Maybach S62 are quite phenomenal vehicles. The brand new S600 Pullman Guard starts at a MSRP of $1,600,000. Yes, 1.6 million USD.

But, what about a used model? Honestly, trying to figure out depreciation or collectible value on a vehicle like this is like cavemen developing a rocket ship. It could be possible, but good luck figuring it out.

Traveling Abroad in Maybach Luxurious Vehicles

North Korea’s Kim Jong-un accompanied by running bodyguards on his way to Hanoi – euronews (in English) – YouTube

So, now the world knows – Kim Jong-un travels abroad in luxurious Maybach vehicles. These vehicles were seen in use during meetings with U.S. President Donald Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin. At the same time, North Korea’s “Secret Service” runs alongside the limo, protecting it from any threats. Honestly, that may be one of the most entertaining portions of his arrival. Watching those men sprint alongside the limo while being vigilantly alert is quite amusing. What happens if someone trips? Do they leave that man behind? Hopefully, that doesn’t happen.

Mercedes Maybach S600 Pullman Guard - North Korea's Kim Jong-un's Limo Leaving Summit - Rear in Motion - REUTERS - EuroDrift

Mercedes Maybach S600 Pullman Guard – North Korea’s Kim Jong-un’s Limo Leaving Summit – Rear in Motion – REUTERS – EuroDrift

Overall, nobody is currently willing to confirm the seller of these fine Maybach vehicles to a sanctioned nation.

Note: All pictures are the property of REUTERS.

Audi Considers Reviving Horch to Battle Bentley & Rolls

Audi Considers Reviving Horch to Battle Bentley & Rolls

Horch Might Be Making a Comeback!

Audi has said that they plan to revive the Horch name for their A8 sedan. The most powerful version of the A8 will rival both Bentley and Rolls in terms of luxury and performance.

The Audi A8 W12 Powertrain

Audi A8 - Front Corner - M 93 - Wikipedia - EuroDrift
Audi A8 – Front Corner – M 93 – Wikipedia – EuroDrift

Automotive News reports that the new Audi A8 will come with options for either the V8 or the W12 that is currently only used by Bentley. Specs for the A8 Horch W12 include a 585 bhp, 6.0-litre engine which is more powerful than Audi’s previous generation A8 W12.

In the Bentley Continental, the W12 puts out about 582 horsepower and uses a 6.0-liter engine. The Rolls-Royce Phantom boasts 563 bhp. The modifications planned for the new Horch A8 will now make it competitive with the other W12 cars.

The History of the W12 Engine

Napier Lion Engine - Overview on Display - Peter Grecian - Wikimedia Commons - EuroDrift
Napier Lion Engine – Overview on Display – Peter Grecian – Wikimedia Commons – EuroDrift

The W12 engine was originally used in aircraft engine designs during the 1920’s and Formula One racing cars in the 1980’s. The modern version of the W12 is part of the Volkswagen Group W12 engines and used on several concept and production vehicles.

  • Audi 
    • Avus Quattro (concept version only)
    • A8L W12
  • Bentley
  • Spyker
    • C12 La Turbie
    • C12 Zagato
    • D12 Peking-to-Paris (prototype version only)
  • Volkswagen
    • GTI W12-650 (prototype only)
    • Phaeton W12
    • Touareg W12
    • W12 (concept car)

(source)

The Revival of the Horch Name

A journey through the Audi history – The Horch Museum Zwickau – Audi Germany – YouTube

The revival of the Horch name pays tribute to one of Audi’s original founders, just as Mercedes’ revival of Maybach did.

Right now, Audi has no plans for a stand-alone model under the Horch name. Audi has said that they don’t plan to use the moniker on any other vehicle but the Audi A8. It seems fitting that their top-of-the-line vehicle would carry the name of their founder.

Despite the fact that the plans for the Horch A8 W12 are complete, no production date has yet been set.

Note: The 1939 Horch 930V Phaeton picture for the featured image was taken by Ramgeis of Wikimedia Commons.

Who Invented the First Automobile?

Who Invented the First Automobile?

There is No Straightforward Answer

Nowadays, automobiles are a part of daily life every day for many people worldwide. This can lead a person to wonder, who invented the first automobile? Well, there is no true straightforward answer. According to the Library of Congress, Karl (Carl) Benz is the inventor of the automobile. The history of building automobiles dates back to Leonardo da Vinci’s designs in the 15th century. On top of this, there are many different types of auto designs including electric, gas, and steam engines. Furthermore, there are numerous styles that differentiate vehicle types.

Before Karl Benz (1769 to 1839)

Le Fardier de Cugnot à Rétromobile – Johann Marmier – YouTube

From 1769 to 1839, the debate of who invented the first automobile begins. Starting with Nicholas-Joseph Cugnot from France. In 1769, Cugnot built the first steam self-propelled road vehicle. This was a military tractor for the French army with three wheels and a top speed of 2.5 mph. As it was a self-propelling vehicle, many debate if this was the first official vehicle. Next, from 1832 to 1839, Robert Anderson from Scotland worked on an electric carriage design. This electric carriage was the next tip of the debate, but not much else is available on this setup.

Karl Friedrich Benz (1885-1886)

The First car ever running live! The Benz Motorwagen (1885) – SquirrelAndRope – YouTube

Karl Friedrich Benz is the Library of Congress’ answer to “who invented the first automobile?”. From 1885-1886, Benz built the first “true” automobile. This vehicle uses gasoline as the power source. Furthermore, the vehicle features an internal combustion engine. This engine has a three wheel and four-cycle setup. The engine and chassis form a single unit. Lastly, this invention has a patent in Germany. For further information, look into Germany Patent DRP No. 37435.

After Karl Benz (1876-1893)

Gottlieb Daimler | automobile inventor – Daimler AG – YouTube

After Benz, there are three further people who some say are responsible for the automobile. So, Karl Benz is the Library of Congress’ answer to “who invented the first automobile?”, but others may digress. In 1886, Gottlieb Wilhelm Daimler and Wilhelm Maybach from Germany built the 1st four wheel, four-stroke engine setup. This gasoline vehicle is known as “Cannstatt-Daimler”. Next, there is George Baldwin Seldon in 1876 and 1895 from the United States. Selden’s design is a carriage with a internal combustion engine. This gasoline automobile was never manufactured but has a patent (patent no: 549,160 from 1895). Selden did however collect royalties for this design.

Lastly, there is Charles Edgar Duryea and his brother Frank. Located in the United States, the Duryea brothers design the first successful gas-powered car. This vehicle has a 4 horsepower two-stroke motor. Furthermore, the Duryea brothers also setup the first American car company. So, if someone wonders, “who set up the first American car manufacturing company?”, here’s your answer. Regardless, each of these designers have some type of contribution to the modern-day evolution of cars. For now, let’s skip the debate of who invented the first SUV or sports car.

Special Thanks to Karl Friedrich Benz

World’s First Car! – Veritasium – YouTube

Overall, the answer to “who invented the first automobile?” stands for Karl Friedrich Benz. At least, according to the Library of Congress. Obviously, this decision wasn’t the easiest and should be respected as one of the top possibilities. Regardless, anyone who owns a vehicle owes a special thanks to Benz. This man’s invention made possible what human life is today. Without automobiles, the world would drastically change back in time. Every single day, millions of people drive cars to get to work, go shopping, or hang with friends. In conclusion, thank you Karl Benz, for providing the path for modern transportation.

Reference: Library of Congress – https://www.loc.gov/rr/scitech/mysteries/auto.html

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