Mercedes-Benz SL

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Mercedes-Benz SL

Most historians agree that Karl Benz's first prototype of 1885 was the worlds first petrol-powered car. Benz was to start out working as a carriage builder and at a stationary engine manufacturer, where he quickly thought it a good idea to combine the two to make a better mode of transport. It would take him 5 years, and a couple of partners (allowing him to concentrate on his engineering) to see the first Benz tricycle reach limited production. This three-wheeler morphed into the four-wheel Viktoria in 1891, forming the basis for van and bus versions. The four-wheel version became very popular, and by the turn of the century Benz was the largest automobile manufacturer.

Fierce competition from other manufacturers would see Benz leave the company bearing his name, in favour of Hans Nibel, who soon embarked on a motor racing effort that would once again raise the companies profile. Most noteable was the "Blitzen-Benz", powered by a 21.5 liter airship engine! Designed to hold the land speed record, it not only achieved it but would hold the record for another decade. Economic hardship following World War I forced Benz to merge with another German manufacturer, Daimler.

Also see: Mercedes SL Heritage


Mercedes 300SL Gullwing  

Mercedes-Benz 300SL Gullwing

1954 - 1957
For the Mercedes enthusiast, the 300SL represents the "Holy Grail". It is beautiful, old and extremely rare, but probably the biggest appeal (apart from the blistering performance) comes from the unique "gullwing doors" and the spaceframe chassis. More >>
Mercedes 190SL  

Mercedes-Benz 190SL

1955 - 1963
The only 4 cylinder SL built (modern SLK's excluded), this was a far simpler (and far less expensive) alternative to the 300SL. More >>
Mercedes 300SL Roadster  

Mercedes-Benz 300SL Roadster

1957 - 1963
Almost identical to the Mercedes "Gullwing" Coupe, the roadster had a lower door line that made entering and exiting the vehicle much easier, something that the rich and famous females that had fallen for the Coupe had ultimately decreed as 'ungainly'. More >>
Mercedes 230SL  

Mercedes-Benz 230SL

1963 - 1967
The 230, 250 and 280 SL model Mercedes are still regarded today as the pinnacle of German styling, quality and engineering. Always popular with women, these fabulous cars boasted fine handling, road holding and a surprisingly sporty auto transmission. More >>
Mercedes 250SL  

Mercedes-Benz 250SL

1966 - 1968
The 250SL was only in production for one year, and was soon replaced by the larger engined 280SL. This has lead to some debate amounst Mercedes fans as to which model is the more collectable, the superior performing 280SL or the low volume 250SL. Certainly from a rarity point of view, the honours must go to the 250SL. More >>
Mercedes 280SL  

Mercedes-Benz 280SL

1967 - 1971
In November 1967 Mercedes released the last SL to use the M129 body, the 280 SL - a car which most collectors regard as the best of the trio. More >>
Mercedes 350SL  

Mercedes-Benz 350SL

1970 - 1980
Introduced early in 1971, this impressive two-seater sports car replaced the 280SL. The body and chassis of the 3rd generation SL was considerably heavier and longer than its predecessor, but still showed a slight resemblence to them. More >>
Mercedes 350SLC  

Mercedes-Benz 350SLC

1971 - 1980
Some 360mm longer than its SL twin, and weighing approximately 50 kilo's more, the SLC featured a "useable" rear passenger seat, and an even larger boot. But even though it was larger than the 107 convertible, it was substantially shorter and lower to the ground that the outgoing 280SE model. More >>
Mercedes 450SL  

Mercedes-Benz 450SL

1973 - 1980
The main reason for the release of the 450SL was to enable Mercedes engineers to cope with more stringent US anti pollution legislation. In fact, the increase in engine size was necessitated out of the engines loss of power after the anti-pollution gear was attached. More >>
Mercedes 280SL  

Mercedes-Benz 280SL

1974 - 1981
The smaller motor made the 280SL lighter, indeed 85 kilos lighter than the 350SL!, and with the weight advantage came a better handling motor car - many believing the 6 cylinder variants were indeed sweeter and sportier. We wont enter into the debate, the desirability of a R107 280SL today speaks for itself! More >>
Mercedes 280SLC  

Mercedes-Benz 280SLC

1974 - 1981
The delightful 280SLC was released at the same time as the 280SL, and in coupe form featuring the highly efficient smaller capacity DOHC six cylinder engine gives this model the honours for the most fuel efficient 107 model ever released. More >>
Mercedes 380SL  

Mercedes-Benz 380SL

1980 - 1985
By the time the 380SL was introduced to the market, some 85,000 R107 body shape roadsters had been produced since the introduction of the 350SL in 1970/71. More >>
Mercedes 380SLC  

Mercedes-Benz 380SLC

1980 - 1981
By the time the 380SLC was introduced to the market, some 54,000 R107 coupes had been produced since the introduction of the 350SLC in 1972. Although 85,000 SL's had been produced by the same time, no one could question the popularity of the SLC model! More >>
Mercedes 500SL  

Mercedes-Benz 500SL

1980 - 1989
For the first time you could option your SL to have ABS, but most importantly for a car with sporting aspirations the new model featured much better acceleration times, 0 - 100 km/h now taking just 7.8 seconds. More >>
 
Mercedes 500SLC  

Mercedes-Benz 500SLC

1980 - 1989
Interestingly, the new model 500SL and SLC's engine developed the same horespower rating as the legendary 300SL from almost 30 years prior. Even acceleration times were near identical, the new model SL and SLC beating the older model by only .6 of a second, attaining 0 - 100 km/h in 8.1 seconds. More >>
Mercedes 500SL

Mercedes-Benz 500SL

1988 - 1992
Fitted with an electro-hydraulically operated top as well as a hard top, the vehicle also had an automatically operated roll bar - activating within 0.3 seconds when a critical situation registered. More >>
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