Supercar heritage doesn't just belong in Italy. Mercedes-Benz has plenty of it too and drew on much of it when in late 2011, it brought us one of the fastest and most desirable designs the German maker has ever unleashed upon us: the SLS AMG Roadster.
At Mercedes-Benz, there's a streak of competition pedigree hardwired into the corporate DNA. From the Silver Arrows of the 1930s and the exploits of Moss and Fangio in the Fifties to the way that in latter years, Mercedes has provided engines for some of the greatest names in Formula One: Hakkinen, Schumacher, Raikkonen, Hamilton - all have been powered by the Three-Pointed Star.
Celebrities too have found the Stuttgart brand's appeal irresistible ever since the achingly beautiful 300SL Gullwing first made its appearance at the 1954 New York International Motor Sports Show and became first choice for the famous, everyone from Grace Kelly to Sophia Loren. The version most wanted was the Roadster model that arrived in 1957, one of the most desirable convertibles ever made - and one of the rarest, particularly in race-prepared SLS form, built to challenge the might of Maserati and Ferrari in the prestigious American Sports Car Championship.
In November 2011, these classic models got a successor, this car, the SLS AMG. It turned out to be just as rare - and will be just as desired by future generations.