Unveiled as a design study at the 1994 Turin Motor Show, the SLK will go into production in mid 1996 as the Mercedes R-class. But whatever the final specifications, this superb, unconventional roadster already brims with innovative interior features.
An exciting blend of classic design and futuristic flair, this compact wedge-shaped masterpiece pays tribute to the Fifties legend, the 300 SLR, with two streamlined "power domes" on the bonnet and integrated headrest fairings.
The interior, however, looks to the future and is a purist's dream. Only 20 per cent is lined, leaving vast expanses of gleaming metal. The carbon fibre instrument panel, faced with top-grade red leather, appears to hang miraculously in space and sports classic indicator dials framed in polished aluminium and an integrated radio. Two practical stowage nets hang below.
Safety features abound with integrated roll-over protection augmented by extremely rigid bodywork, full-size driver and passenger airbags and automatic seat-belt tensioners. But the real joy of the SLK is its seductive design - a sports car for the future that retains all that is best of the past.
Without doubt, when the SLK hits the market it will be one of the most coveted convertibles ever - and you could be one of its privileged owners.
To be in with a chance of winning an SLK you must collect 10 differently numbered tokens from the 16 we will be publishing in the Independent and the Independent On Sunday. Today we are publishing Token 7.
The SLK is the shape of things to come and a guarantee of truly independent motoring.