When it comes to cars, it either becomes a fad and almost forgotten years later or it becomes a classic. The Mercedes Benz 300 SL is such a car that would stuck in people’s head for years.
The Mercedes-Benz 300 SL aka Mercedes-Benz Gullwing by now should be considered a vintage and old fashion as it was introduced back in 1954 but it was innovative at that time as this was the first iteration of the SL-Class grand tourer and the fastest production car of its day.
Suggested by Max Hoffman, an importer of Mercedes Benz and other European cars to Daimler-Benz AG management in Stuttgart that a street version of the W194 Grand Prix racer would be a commercial success, especially in America.
Reluctant at first to produce such a car, Max promised Mercedes that he would buy them. When they finally made the car, Max bought 1,100 out of the 1400 made and brought them back to the U.S..
Even producing a car in Germany was a miracle in itself as the factory was destroyed after World War 2 and a few years later not only is Mercedes back in production but being innovative as well with the first ever gullwing.
Was the gullwing design just for show then to make it unique?
It was actually deem necessary as it was built around a welded aluminum tube space frame chassis to save weight while still providing a high level of strength in which it enveloped the passenger compartment making traditional doors impossible.
Did you know that Mercedes added a steering wheel with a tilt-away column in order to improve driver access since even with the upward opening doors, the 300 SL had an unusually high sill, making entry and exit from the car’s cockpit problematic.
Featuring an innovative diagonal aluminum head that allowed for larger intake and exhaust valves, it was canted to the right at forty-five-degrees to fit under the SL’s considerably lower hood line.
Let’s now switch gears and talk about the die cast model. This model is a 1/24 scale of the 1954 Mercedes 300SL made by Welly and features a very nice detail front.
The back looks quite nice as well. Previously I’ve shown that the hood and gullwing doors do open but the trunk does not. The emblems are not separate parts but painted on. The tail lights are chrome with tampo or paint to simulate the lights. The wheels do roll and has a working steering as well. For your information, I saw a video of an actual SL300 with the trunk opened and a spare tire occupies most of its space.
This may not be a MiniChamp or AutoArt brand but the realism displayed on this model gets my recommendation.