At the ADAC Eifel Rally Festival, which is set to be held from July 25 through 27, Mercedes-Benz Classic is set to field a 500 SL rally version. At the helm of the vehicle will be Björn Waldegård, a former winner of the Bandama Rally in 1980 while driving a Mercedes-Benz 500 SLC.
The classic vehicle is actually one that was prepared for competition in 1981. It is based on the Roadster and was meant to succeed the coupe units Mercedes-Benz used for international rally competitions back then. Sadly, the brand halted rally activities before the 1981 season started. Now, it gets to see some action in a rally event.
With the motto of “Rallying up close,” the focus is going to be providing fun for both participants and spectators of the event.
The Mercedes-Benz 500 SL Rally (R 107) was one of four vehicles prepared for the 1981 rally season. The car sports an uprated 320 hp V8 engine and a drive axle that had a differential lock with 80 percent locking effect that allows for some nifty drift angles.
Weight reduction also featured heavily in the car’s design. It went down to 1350 from 1586, and still managed to fit in a tubular-aluminum safety cage, more headlamps, and other rally fixtures.