DMG now had a successful brand name, but still lacked a characteristic trademark. Then Paul and Adolf Daimler – the company founder’s two sons, and now senior executives at DMG – remembered that their father, who had died in March 1900 shortly before his 66th birthday, had once used a star as a symbol.
Gottlieb Daimler had been technical director of the Deutz gas engine factory from 1872 until 1881. At the beginning of his employment there, he had marked a star above his own house on a picture postcard of Cologne and Deutz, and had written to his wife that this star would one day shine over his own factory to symbolize prosperity.
The DMG board immediately accepted the proposal and in June 1909, both a three-pointed and a four-pointed star were registered as trademarks. Although both designs were legally protected, only the three-pointed star was used. From 1910 onward, a three-dimensional star adorned the radiator at the front of the car.
The three-pointed star was supposed to symbolize Daimler’s ambition of universal motorization – “on land, on water and in the air”. Over the years, various small additions were made. In 1916, the tips were surrounded by a circle, in which four small stars and the word Mercedes were integrated, or alternatively the names of the DMG plants at Untertürkheim or Berlin-Marienfelde.