The Mercedes-Benz 300SL Will Make You Go Outside and Start Your Own Car

Every other car can stop. Just stop. Go home, pack it in, and get underneath your slipcovers because you can’t touch what you’re about to hear.

The Mercedes-Benz 300SL is the original gullwing car. Clark Gable owned one. Jay Leno owns one. Jerry Seinfeld is probably building one. This is the car that was literally the first in the world to use fuel-injection in a commercial model. That advantage made it—for a brief moment in time—the fastest car in the world with a top speed of 161 mph.

But the reason we’re writing about it today is that you need to start listening to it. An enthusiast of this—I have to call it a “relic” not because it’s old, but because it’s practically hallowed at this point—relic has made a video designed to focus on one particular aspect of the 300SL: its sound.

The 300SL entered production in 1954 having spent the previous two years enjoying itself purely as a racing model. It had won the 24 Hours of Le Mans competition in 1952, as well as the Eifelrennen in Nürburgring, and the Carrera Panamericana in Mexico, all in that same year (thank you, Wikipedia).

That was enough to convince the rest of the world that it wanted one, particularly the U.S. where more than 80% of the models have been sold.

All of this means little compared to the sound of that straight six-cylinder engine block utilizing fuel injected directly into the cylinders in a way that no other vehicle had done. It makes sense that an engine doing something completely new would sound unlike anything else ever made. Simply put, there was nothing for it to imitate at the time.

Engines have changed a lot since then, and you can probably pick up an iPhone these days that uses fuel-injection somehow. But the 300SL has something that only car lovers can understand, and we’re glad to see it preserved in glorious high-definition for the rest of us.

The Mercedes-Benz 300SL Will Make You Go Outside and Start Your Own Car was last modified: April 20th, 2021 by Mercedes-Benz Raleigh


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