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RSA (Pre-1994): Mercedes-Benz "Seventy Years' Motorisation in South Africa"

RSA (Pre-1994): Mercedes-Benz "Seventy Years' Motorisation in South Africa"RSA (Pre-1994): Mercedes-Benz "Seventy Years' Motorisation in South Africa"
RSA (Pre-1994): Mercedes-Benz "Seventy Years' Motorisation in South Africa"RSA (Pre-1994): Mercedes-Benz "Seventy Years' Motorisation in South Africa"
RSA (Pre-1994): Mercedes-Benz "Seventy Years' Motorisation in South Africa"RSA (Pre-1994): Mercedes-Benz "Seventy Years' Motorisation in South Africa"
Form: Circular
By: ?
Date: 1966
Ref:  AM2: 371; Laidlaw: 1064;
Variations:
SizeMetalMassValue
51.0 mmGold 18ct97.3 gm$3,700
51 mmSilver$200

Edge: Plain. Gold medal stamped: "18CT" and the issue number. This medal: "NO. 1". Silver medal stamped for silver.

Obverse: Side view of a Benz Velo, left. Below across: "Benz «Comfortable» (in script) / 1899.1896". Legend above between stars: "BENZ (emblem of Mercedes-Benz) VELO" and below: "SOUTH AFRICA 1896 SUID-AFRIKA".

Reverse: Above, facade of Paul Kruger's house in Pretoria and below, facade of the State President's house also in Pretoria. Legend: "1899 (top) GELUKWENSBOODSKAP (downwards, left) .27.V.1966 (bottom) MESSAGE OF GOODWILL (upwards, right)".

Notes: Comes in a blue, square, fitted case lined with white silk and blue velvet.

The Benz "Velo" was introduced by Karl Benz in 1894 and remained in production until 1902. In 1898 a better equipped variation, the Benz "Comfortable", was introduced. In total 1,200 vehicles were produced, most of them for export.

This medal commemorate three separate events. (1) The sale of the first Benz Velo to South Africa in 1896. (2) A trip in a Benz Comfortable bringing a message of goodwill to President Kruger at his home in 1899. (3) A similar trip by a Benz Comfortable on 27 May 1966 bringing congratulations to the State President at his official residence on the fifth anniversary of the Republic.

It is recorded that 14 medals were produced in gold and 180 in sterling silver.

The medal depicted here is a museum piece. It is medal: "No 1" presented to State President C.R. Swart by United Car and Diesel Distributors (Pty.) Ltd. of Pretoria, generally representatives of Daimler-Benz AG, on behalf of Mercedes-Benz of South Africa.