In 1901, when Mercedes Jellinek was just 11 years old, her demanding father Emil Jellinek insisted that her name be given to an order of 36 cars he intended to buy from Daimler-Motoren-Gesellschaft.
Daimler-Motoren-Gesellschaft used the Mercedes name for most of its cars and registered it as a trademark in 1902. The three-pointed star came later, in 1909. Jellinek had his own name legally changed to Emil Jellinek-Mercedes.
On 28 June 1926, when Benz and Cie formally merged with Daimler Motoren Gesellschaft — becoming Daimler-Benz AG (Aktiengesellschaft) — it was agreed that thereafter, all of the individual factories would use the Mercedes-Benz brand name on their automobiles.
The design consists of a simple depiction of a three-pointed star that represents its domination of the land, sea, and air.
Silver is typical of the brand, and dates back to its involvement in the first Grand Prix at the Nürburgring in 1934.
When one of the cars exceeded the eligible weight of 750 kilograms in the pre-race checks, officials spent the night polishing off the white paint so the car was back to its raw silver colour. (So the legend goes.) The car was named the “silver arrow.”