The Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG, is one of our favorite cars here at Boldride. Though some in the autmotive journalist aristocracy were quick to dismiss the SLS as too fat-bottomed to be a proper super car, and too expensive to be a sports car; we welcomed the change in Mercedes and AMG’s direction. When the SLS AMG Roadster was revealed, however, we joined hands with fellow journalists and sung cumbaya in praise of what is to become yet another collectible modern Mercedes-Benz.
The evidence is clear. The SLS simply oozes luxury, performance and history. In Roadster form it’s impossible not to draw comparisons to the famous Mercedes sports racing cars of the 1950′s. In particular the 300 SLR, which is exactly what Motor Trend‘s Angus Mckenzie does on this most recent episode of “Epic Drives.” The SLS AMG Roadster, with its 583 horsepower V8, long hood, exposure to the elements and appetite for oversteer is the perfect car to drive the route of the Mille Miglia. Where for 40 years, from 1927 through 1957, manufacturers and race car drivers tested their machinery and iron will against the treacheries of public roads at speeds reaching 180 mph.
For most of the Mille Migllila’s history only three non-Italian drivers ever won the race. The last of whom was Sir Stirling Moss in his Mercedes-Benz 300 SLR. So it only seemed fitting that with exclusive access to the SLS AMG Roadster that Mckenzie would bring Sir Stirling Moss into the mix. The result is part car review, and part history lesson as told by the legendary racer as he gently glides the German roadster across the Raticosa Pass.
It’s an amazing bit of film if only for Moss’s typical British gentlemanly candor…oh, and anecdotes of passing BMW Isetta’s at 180+ mph. All of which speaks to a time when automotive racing, and the personalities involved were the stuff of legend. Mark Zuckerberg and Steve Jobs be damned; sliding a magnesium bodied 310 horsepower rocket with drum brakes around a corner on bias ply tires is heroic- far more so than leveraging your net worth on a fickle IPO. Watch this video, take notes and bask in the glory of one of the greatest stories of man and machine never to be turned into a Hollywood box office hit.