Rolf Hartge makes his motor industry comeback with the Smart Luxury concept

Smart personalisation for Mercedes-Benz and Maybach models.

Überherrn/Saarland – Rolf Hartge is back! Following the success Rolf and his brother Andreas enjoyed with Carlsson in the 1980s and ‘90s, the native Saarlander is making his comeback, this time using his own name as both entrepreneur and brand.

Leading a team of specialist engineers and craftsmen, the industry legend is an officially contracted partner of Daimler AG, dedicated to the personalisation of Mercedes-Benz and Maybach models.

A new label for “Smart Luxury”

“With petrol running in my veins, and 40 years of experience in a field that is as much my hobby as my work, early retirement proved untenable for me,” says Rolf Hartge. “So after an 11-year break, my journey is recommencing, this time with my son Hendrik by my side.”

To support his new venture Rolf Hartge has assembled a team of experienced engineers and craftsmen, each totally committed to this family-run business whose ethos is the passion and vision of its founder.

Recognised by the German Federal Motor Transport Service (KBA) as a car manufacturer, Rolfhartge GmbH has a clear mission statement. “Simply offering what the competition does was never an option for me,” explains Hartge. “This is why our approach reinterprets the concept of vehicle personalisation at the highest level.”

“With a focus on innovations in design, health, comfort and a feel-good ambience, qualities we call “Smart Luxury“, we aim to deliver added value to the ownership experience,” explains Rolf Hartge.

Meanwhile, ultra-light 21-inch alloy wheels that lower unsprung weight are fitted with special tyres. These wheels and subtle aerodynamic components give a Rolfhartge car its discreet but distinguished appearance. Performance upgrades will follow in due course, but at debut the Rolfhartge brand is focused on the refinement of vehicle interiors.

“Only the best of the best …”

Following the approach illustrated by a 1930’s Maybach brochure, Rolfhartge not only stages a vehicle interior with the highest-quality materials and exquisitely designed decorative elements, but also enhances the feel-good factor with innovative features like air purification and liquid glass coating.

“We stand for stylish and visually distinctive cars with state-of-the-art technology, and comfort, wellness, and health as genuine value-added features,” says Hartge. “We are thus the only supplier to comprehensively meet and exceed customer expectations in our target markets.”

Hartge envisages an international customer base in the markets where Mercedes-Benz and Maybach models are officially sold, with customer contact exclusively through official dealers and locally appointed partners.

The Chinese market plays a very important role here. “The car is increasingly becoming the third living space alongside home and work in the Middle Kingdom, with partial and fully autonomous driving in the offing. This is why we are focused on the health and well-being of our clients in this market.”

State of the art – innovation though tradition

At the end of the 80s, Rolf Hartge and his brother, Andreas founded Carlsson to tune Mercedes-Benz cars.

In addition to improving the performance of Mercedes-Benz cars,

Rolf Hartge also devised the latent heat storage system. With an eye on fuel economy and driveability he also developed the “C-TRONIC ECO-Box” to enhance engine torque over the usual horsepower. This was years before competitors developed so-called “Eco-Tuning”.

Looking beyond the mechanical aspects of a car, Hartge also entered into co-operation with the well-known fashion label “Etienne Aigner” to literally create haute couture on wheels.

By the time Rolf Hartge sold Carlsson and retired in 2007 he had built the company into a leader in the personalisation industry. Now Rolf Hartge is back with a brand that symbolises the confidence his clients have in his reputation.


Rolfhartge GmbH is headquartered in the Saarland, Germany. This export-oriented business is focused on the smart individualisation of Mercedes-Benz and Maybach cars, with an innovative approach to alloy wheels, ride comfort, and personalised interiors. More information and photos can be found at