• Sean Campbell

Mercedes-Benz SSK Model by CMC Model Cars: A New Level of Attention to Detail and Truth

By now you know full well that our team here at SpeedHolics commits a great deal of time to searching for and honoring the great makers and doers who keep motoring’s golden eras alive today. On our most recent foray, we came across the Germany based CMC (Classic Model Cars). Rarely have we come across such a stringent attention to detail in a model car.


Photos courtesy of CMC - Classic Model Cars



While browsing their CMC website, it was their range of the unforgettable Mercedes-Benz SSK models that really stopped us in our tracks.

Considered the sportiest and most exclusive rendition of the of the super-charged six-cylinder racing sports cars from Mercedes-Benz’ S series, SSK is short for “Super-Sport Kurz” (meaning Short-wheelbase Super Sport). It debuted on race tracks in 1928, only four weeks after the SS (Super-Sport) model was introduced. Among its major modifications was a wheelbase curtailed by 450 millimeters to highlight its uncompromising characteristics. This made the SSK an ideal choice for hill climb racing. After Rudolf Caracciola won several important hillclimb races in the 1928 season, the factory decided to produce a small series of the SSK, initially meant to be a factory racing car only. However from October 1928 it was included in the official sales program.


So, part of the legend of the SSK is that it was both a factory racing car and a customer vehicle.

Some racing specifications, such as a more powerful compressor or a racing camshaft, were also available to private customers, while others were reserved for factory racing cars. It was common for private owners of an SSK to take part in races at weekends and use their two-seaters on weekdays as an everyday means of transport. in everyday life. With little doubt, the SSK was the ultimate supercar of its time.


And so it fits that CMC has sought to authentically recreate a series of the most impactful SSK models.

Among them are Carlos Zatuszek’s red model as well as “The Black Prince” -- the SSK Trossi. Zatuscek’s 1929 version, finished in a deep wine red, took home victory in a series of long distance races in Argentia in the early 30s. A household name in South America today, Carlos Zatuszak, was actually born in 1897 as Karol Zatuszek in what is now Ukraine. He attempted his first car race in 1927. Two years later, his brother-in-law Julio Berndt acquired the SSK, with which Zatuszek scored victory after victory in the following years.


With starting number 14, he competed at the Autumn Prize of Argentina 1931 and won the 400-kilometer race, setting a new track record in the process. After Berndt and Zatuszek sold the car in 1935, it continued to be raced by others until the 1950s. Then, it fell into oblivion for many years, but its remains were eventually rediscovered. They were shipped to Germany where the car was restored. CMC had the opportunity to scan the car before it was repainted in the original red. And what a job they did. This is a hell of a lot more than a run of the mill recreation in model form.


Made out of 1,700 individual metal parts including a true to life steel frame, the model is perfectly scaled and reproduced.

The grille and rock guards are rendered from fine metals, while the rear bonnet includes a metal lock. It features a mid-hinged front bonnet complete with leather belt and buckle. The six cylinders are a faithful replica with all ancillaries, piping and cabling, and the characteristic exhaust pipes are in a metal snake conduit casing. The wheels get the same attention to detail -- alloy rims and stainless steel spokes wired by hand. The central knock-off spinners are removable, as are the two handle-fasted spare wheels. Both front and rear axles are constructed with hand-made metal leaf springs, amd even the stainless steel fuel cap can be opened. Mounted by the steering wheel you’ll find the throttle / ignition lever, and all gauges on the dashboard are authentically recreated. As for the seats inside? Real leather. That’s right. Even the wind screens are adjustable on both the driver and passenger / co-driver sides, and the brake drums come in the original copper design complete with cooling fins.



When we talk about keeping the best days of motor racing alive and kicking, or at the very worst, alive and kicking on our memories and our souls, it’s the kind of work done by CMC that we’re talking about. That attention to detail, that good faith, and that sheer love and passion. See it for yourself here.


Full Disclosure: SpeedHolics has not been paid to write about this product or brand. We simply choose to write about things we discover and fall for -- things that appeal to our passions, and hopefully to yours too.

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