Photo of the day: Mercedes SL meets fighter jet

Gorgeous 300 SL and fighter jet need no real explanation. But the pilots' behaviour does

 Later this month, Mercedes-Benz will showcase two rather exceptional cars from its back catalogue at the Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance.

One is a 1903 Mercedes-Simplex, arguably the start of Mercedes as we know it today. It’s a 40PS version, owned by Mercedes, and highly important.

But the second car is the one we’re more excited about, and today’s picture of the day. It is a 300 SL Roadster, originally built in 1957 and fully restored by the factory. It’s got a 3.0-litre straight-six and 212hp. When new, a top speed of 240km/h was possible.

OK, so it did without the gullwing doors from the 300 SL Gullwing it partnered, but normal doors are just fine. The suspension was altered for the Roadster too: a single-joint swing-axle with a lowered pivot point replaced the… oh wait, you don’t care about that.

You care about how it looks. Alongside the 300 SL Gullwing, it remains one of the prettiest Benzes ever built. Merc actually used the Roadster to develop the 300 SLS racer too. Which is fitting, when you remember – if you remember – that the 300 SL Gullwing was itself a road-going version of the 300 SL racer used back in 1952.

Anyway, enough history. Mercedes hasn’t released a picture of the actual SL Roadster it will display at Pebble (it’s blue-grey with a blue leather interior), instead giving us this intriguing shot of a red SL next to a fighter plane.

What on earth are those pilots pointing at? Explain to us: just how pretty is the SL?

Author: TopGear
Top Gear is a British television series about motor vehicles, primarily cars, and is the most widely watched factual television programme in the world.