When Gottlieb Daimler and Karl Benz invented the high-speed engine and the automobile independently of each other in the 1880s, they laid the foundations for motorised private transport. With the help of financial backers and partners, both engineers carried out private development work at their own companies. Benz founded Benz & Co. Rheinische Gasmotoren-Fabrik in Mannheim in October 1883; the Daimler-Motoren-Gesellschaft (DMG) was founded in Cannstatt in November 1890.
Both companies wanted to come up with a memorable trademark to make their products both distinctive and familiar. Initially they opted for their own names – Benz and Daimler – to represent the origins and quality of their engines and vehicles. The Benz & Cie. trademark did not change (though the gearwheel used in 1903 was replaced by a laurel wreath encircling the Benz name from 1909). However, the products of DMG appeared under the new brand name Mercedes at the turn of the century.