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10/27/03 BURNING DESIRE

This article is from our archives and has not been updated and integrated with our "new" site yet... Even so, it's still awesome - so keep reading!

Published on Mon, Nov 17, 2003

By: The LACar Editorial Staff

BURNING DESIRE

By JOHN GRAFMAN

The story of Nero fiddling as Rome burns comes vividly to mind. Downtown Los Angeles, at the Standard Hotel, Mercedes launches fashion week with an invitation-only champagne and caviar affair to unveil the remarkable SLR. All the while, Southern California is engulfed in flame and smoke.

The surroundings overly emphasized the white, hot glow from the new halo car from Benz. The dynamic styling needs to be seen first hand. Some photos tend to make the SLR look no more unique than a tarted up SL600. In the flesh, however, the SLR has its own individuality, and bears about as much resemblance to the SL as the SL does to the SLK.

Hot off the griddle, the new flagship, alas, was unavailable for a spin around town. To my understanding, the silver bullet was the only one on the West Coast. Even the employees of Mercedes-Benz, who have a far better in than us, have yet to even sit in this temptress, let alone actually get pebbles and road debris wedged between her tire treads.

The elusiveness of the SLR adds to the mystique. With roughly just a couple cars a week being made available to the United States, it's doubtful we will see too many on the mean streets of LA.

While the amazingly capable and stratospherically-priced Ferrari 360 has become all but commonplace in this town, we need a new lust. Those who don't mind the wait and have the means will capture the motorcar of their dreams. The rest of us will have to learn to live with the burning desire in our hearts.

More information on Mercedes Benz can be found at www.mbusa.com

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