300SL Gullwing for 2009

The iconic 300SL Gullwing is an inspiration to many – both collectors and designers. Just as Mercedes is working on its SLS AMG ‘gullwing’, Arturo Alonso and his company, Gullwing-America, have produced their own take on the legendary model – the 2009 300 SL Panamericana.

Alonso, who has raced the Carrera many times himself in a Mercedes 300SE, says the concept is intended to combine the Carrera Panamericana cars of the 1950s with new technology – including air-conditioning and power steering.

The car’s body uses composite technology from the aircraft industry, with a 0.5mm-thick layer of aluminum sprayed into a mould, over which an epoxy adhesive is laid, followed by several layers of woven glass cloth. The chassis has independent suspension with adjustable coil-overs, disc brakes all round, and a 365bhp 5.5-litre Mercedes engine mated to a six-speed transmission.

The wheels are ‘old-school’ 17 X 8 AMG alloys with red AMG calipers, while the stripes on the livery mimic the works cars from La Carrera.

300SL Gullwing for 2009 300SL Gullwing for 2009

Text: Charis Whitcombe
Photos: Gullwing-America

ClassicInside - The Classic Driver Newsletter
Free Subscription!