American firm creates fibreglass replica of original 300SL, but with modern mechanicals

We're just months away from from the Merc SLS Gullwing's official unveiling, but the fifties original on which it's based is still going strong! A US firm has created a fibreglass-bodied replica called the 300SL Panamerica, but brought it bang-up-to date with modern underpinnings.

The retro-inspired body panels might mimic the original car perfectly, but under the long hood is a 5.5-litre Mercedes V8 - the same unit used on the SLR hypercar, excpet detuned to 'just' 370bhp. A powder-coated steel chassis and independent suspension help to ensure that while it looks like an old car, it certainly won't drive like one.

Inside the cabin modern luxuries such as air-con and power steering are included, while the seats are upholstered in scarlett-red leather in a nod towards the car that spawned it. Deep-dish 17-inch alloys help to define the Panamericana as a modern classic, while a choice of three colour schemes are available.

There's no word on prices just yet, but the company behind the car, Gullwing America, has encouraged interested parties to come forward - it needs their investment to get the ambitious project off the ground.
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