It’s no secret that OEM’s build amazing cars. Engineers spend literally thousands of man hours optimizing every aspect of a vehicle’s design. They sure don’t make ’em like they used to and for good reason.
However, with these advances have come the unfortunate side effect of relative homogenity. Fresh, exciting designs that truly break the mold are few and far between. This trend is likely to continue as aerodynamics and safety dictate design more and more. Cars are also getting heavier all the time thanks to both the aforementioned regulations, increasing sizes and added content.
This progression has made many feel that the car they really want combines the best of both worlds. From the classic side of the table we need an iconic design that has successfully weathered the test of time, relative mechanical simplicity. To that we would ideally add the best mechanicals the modern industry has to offer with their superior performance, efficiency and reliability. We’ve seen examples of cars built to this design brief from Top Secret, Rocky Auto and other JDM powerhouses.
One of the finest examples of this idea without a doubt is the 300SL 6.0 AMG. The car was made in Germany but has proven very popular in Japan with numerous examples appearing on magazine covers and the garages of Japan’s elite despite the fact that only 11 were ever produced. It’s no wonder as this car embodies everything that is right about the resto-mod concept.
You and I may not be able to replicate such a build but there are many lessons to learn. Look at the mirrors. They’re not original but they blend in with the design perfectly and do wonders for everyday driveability. Besides the wheels they are one of very few alterations to the magnificent original design. Speaking of the wheels, despite the fact that they are certainly modern, the design is conservative and complements the rest of the car rather nicely. All visibly identifiable parts are clearly Mercedes originals and sticking to a given manufacturer’s parts bin is usually a very good idea. I might personally consider SLR wheels but wheels designed specifically for Mercedes are a must since Mercedes has done an excellent job maintaining a consistent design language even up to today.
More pics here.