Vijay Pattni22 March 2012

Merc destroys 300SL gullwing replica

Think you can get away with building a copycat ‘gullwing’? Think again…

Mercedes 300SL gullwing

You can't make the Mercedes-Benz 300SL gullwing, because you're not Mercedes. And if you do Mercedes will find your ability to make a gullwing replica insignificant next to the power of its force.

In short, Mercedes will crush you. Or it.

Benz has revealed that a replica of its 300SL gullwing was recently seized by German customs officials and destroyed, with Daimler AG taking a "firm line" on vehicle copies.

A German company had apparently produced the replica - seen in the picture above and gallery below - which was found to be in breach of Benz's rights: Mercedes has had copyright protection on the shape of the gullwing for "a number of decades", recently confirmed by a Stuttgart regional court. As such, Mercedes took the vehicle and became very displeased with its lack of faith.

Gallery: Mercedes destroys illegal 300SL replica

But the story doesn't end there. No, Mercedes has outlined how it destroyed the 300SL, perhaps as a warning for future generations. The Merc used parts centre, which is also responsible for destroying Benz prototypes, first separated the chassis from the body. It then used two presses - each applying over 30 tonnes of pressure - to smash the 148kg fibreglass body "into small pieces" which, in Merc's own words, was "a dramatic end".

As a footnote, it was signed and stamped with a "confirmation of scrappage" document.

In true CrimeStoppers style, if you have spotted any other Mercedes-Benz 300SL gullwing replicas not officially sanctioned by the company, call your local Merc dealer. Or else feel the full power of the force...

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