Saturday, January 31, 2015

The Singular Daytona Gullwing

Pictured in GT3 spec in strategically blinding chrome.
I need some Gullwing in my life. I'm on about the SLS (Sport Light Super) AMG. And if we'd like to get specific, I'd like the impossibly rare combo of a Daytona Blue exterior with a Designo light brown natural woven interior and carbon fibre trim. A bonus would be the optional 10-spoke wheels and an alcantara steering wheel. I say extraordinary rare because everyone and their dog bought their 563 horsepower SLS in a dull shade. Some went with black, or sometimes white, but most of them are grey / silver. And there's actually nothing wrong with that. The SLS was launched at a time when you didn't dare spec a flashy colour. Plus its a German car, so by law it should be a non-colour. And I assume the "Silver Arrows" motorsport connection didn't help sway people towards red and blue either. But for those brave souls who went against the grain and ordered their Gullwing in Daytona Blue were rewarded with a masterpiece. I call a lot of cars a piece of art, but a Daytona SLS may just be the actual one. A true piece of art. A modern interpretation of the E-Type, with its long hood and short rear overhang. It also looks, sounds, and goes like a Gentlemen's Racer for the streets. The fact that its quite a competent car with a ZF gearbox that forces you to drive it like a low slung muscle car of yesteryear but then has all of the Mercedes creature comforts inside is just layer after layer of icing on top of the already irresistible 6.3 later 8-cylinder cake that is the SLS. The car's only flaw is that only tall people could elegantly close the Gullwing door when seated. So for yours truly, a non-issue then.

I'd have a 2010-2011 SLS AMG, or a 2012 SLS AMG GT (bit of contrast red stitching, 20 extra horses and re-programmed more responsive gearbox) or the back breaking yellow SLS Black Series because more aero and Black Series. I'm not picky. So SLS AMG, who's with me? Here's a little known video taken by a well known fellow who was lucky enough to have a Daytona Blue SLS on loan from Mercedes for a few months. Lovely little YouTube gem, this. And after doing a quick search online,... my case in point - in all of North America, there's exactly 1 SLS for sale in Daytona Blue. For those in the market for an SLS, don't expect values to drop much more as the AMG boss let on that no SLS AMG replacement is due anytime soon as they focused on the launch of the AMG GT (911 competitor) and respect the customers who bought an SLS new, who were led to believe it was a once in a blue moon special car, similar to the 300SL Gullwing. A very special experiment indeed.