It’s easy to be sniffy. In the 1990s, a wealthy Middle Eastern fella asked AMG to knock him up a few Mercedes-Benz 300SL Gullwing sports cars, with some personal embellishments.
It was a pretty discreet, radar-dodging operation. Six cars were apparently shipped to Brunei; another five exported to customers elsewhere.
These were some serious embellishments, too. Out went the in-line six and its 1000-mile oil changes; gone was the manual ’box and, apparently, most of the swing-arm rear suspension. In came a 6.0-litre V8, coupled to an automatic gearbox from a modern SL, disc brakes and power steering. The suspension looked lower, was supposedly multi-link at the rear and was finished with AMG wheels in low-profile rubber. Tasty? Umm.
One surfaced recently, owned by the guv’nor of Japanese design brand A Bathing Ape. He has opened his apartment/studio to the public for a while, and in it is a 300SL AMG with camouflage finish.
And here’s where the sniffiness begins. I’ve seen a picture of this car on classic car-oriented social meeja outlets. Tea was spat. Beards were stroked. Someone called it an insult to Mercedes.
I wonder if it’s better not to mention that the AMGs were made from original shells? They weren’t recreations. Real Gullwings were harmed in the making of this picture.