Mercedes-Benz SLR McLaren range – Click above for high-res image gallery
When the end of one's life approaches, individuals are prone to reflect and wonder how they'll be remembered. A car, on the other hand, can't think for itself, so we'll have to take up the task in its stead.
A joint effort between Mercedes-Benz and its erstwhile Formula One racing partner McLaren, the SLR spawned five variants: the original coupe and roadster, the 722 coupe and roadster and the Stirling Moss edition... not to mention a racing version or two. Over the course of its five-year production run, more than 2,000 examples were built, making the SLR one of the most prolific supercars in automotive history. As the final examples of the Stirling Moss roll out of the McLaren factory in Woking, its parents are going their separate ways: Mercedes has sold its stake back to McLaren, acquired its own F1 team, and each has produced its own successor: the SLS AMG and the MP4-12C.
So with its production run drawing to a close, we can't help but wonder how will history remember the Mercedes-Benz SLR McLaren. As the purest embodiment of the Gran Turismo? A fitting tribute to the original 300 SLR that dominated racing in the Fifties? The flawed result of a conflict of interests? Or perhaps as the roadgoing product of one of the most intriguing partnerships in automotive history? Read through the history lesson in the press release after the jump and peruse the gallery of high-resolution images below and you'll get Daimler's perspective. We invite you to share yours in the comments section below.