The Mercedes-Benz SLR McLaren may not be as well remembered as its contemporaries – world-beating supercars like the Ferrari Enzo or Porsche Carrera GT. But with over two thousand produced, it was one of the most prolific.
So to cater to the owners of those 2,157 British-built, German-badged exotics, Mercedes has launched the SLR Club. The club held its first gathering at the recent Chantilly Arts & Elegance concours, where a dozen such supercars gathered – along with the original Vision SLR concept that previewed the series at the 1999 Detroit Auto Show.
The road-going embodiment of the longstanding partnership between Mercedes and McLaren, the SLR was a front-engined supercar with a 5.4-liter supercharged V8 mated (unfortunately) to a five-speed automatic transmission. Both coupe and convertible versions were offered, including limited editions like the 722 and Stirling Moss speedster.
The vehicle was manufactured on Mercedes’ behalf at the McLaren Technology Centre in Woking, England, after the McLaren F1 but before McLaren Automotive launched with the MP4-12C. With the SLS AMG and AMG GT moving gradually down-market, the SLR remained the most expensive and exotic Mercedes supercar until the arrival of the new Project One hypercar.
The new club is one of 80 such Mercedes-Benz owners’ groups officially recognized by the factory, with some 100,000 members around the world. If you’re keen on joining this one and are looking for the right set of wheels, the All Time Stars showroom at the Mercedes-Benz Museum in Stuttgart has a rare 722 S Roadster with 25,800 kilometers on the clock available for sale.