Angel's Wings: Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG by Norev
As we've established many times in the past, the brand with the most representation in my collection has to be Mercedes-Benz. They've been a staple of my family for generations, and I've kinda been groomed to love them since childhood. While I have no issues collecting cars from one of my favorite brands, I've had some issues with trying to make sure every generation of Mercedes is represented, from the early 20th century to even today.
"But how could it be so difficult," you may ask, and it's true, every decade has had its fair share of legendary three-pointed star models. But the issue is the fact that some decades have been lesser than others in terms of design, reliability, and other major factors that I take into consideration, even on a diecast level. Due to this, the 2000s have been a major issue when it comes to Mercedes collection for me.
But one model from the late 2000s has always stuck out to me, it's one that I've loved regardless of the time from which it came: the SLS AMG. From the beginning of my collection days I knew I needed an SLS, but finding the right one was an issue. Maisto provided a decent bargain but featured the wrong wheel choice, likewise with Minichamps. Motormax had the wheels I preferred, but with pitiful quality. But then, recently, I finally found one from a good old friend of mine in the diecast world, Norev, that seemed to tick all the boxes I desired. Or, well...most of them.
So, let's get down to basics. This is a 2010 SLS AMG Coupe finished in Alubeam Silver over Black, with the AMG twin-five spoke wheels. Basically, it's my ideal SLS, right down to the choice of color and model (coupes over roadsters anyday), and the price was about $80 from Minineopet on eBay. At first I thought this price was too good to be true, for some reason I had never seen a coupe version from Norev before recently, so I figured they were rather rare, but a quick search around showed me the price was right...and too tempting to refuse.
The model itself is typical fare from Norev's Mercedes line, it's built with high quality diecast and given brilliant detailing to a T. There's a definite heft, as is standard for these, something I appreciate compared to the much lighter AutoArt models these days.
But to keep prices down, Norev does provide some tricky habits. This model has neither an opening trunk nor an opening rear spoiler, which is something the Maisto does provide. Oh well, you give some, you take some, you know?
EDIT: Thanks to Scott, I discovered the trunk does indeed open!
Alas, those gullwing doors are the real piece-de-resistance, providing us an inviting look into the beautifully sculpted and detailed cockpit, something that no Maisto SLS could ever provide.
The M159 V8 is nicely replicated, with the intricate engine block detailing and logos adding to the reality of the subject. The "One man, One engine" badge is, of course, present, as it was on that Maisto Exclusive AMG GT, though I expected that from Norev.
I'm definitely pleased that Norev managed to come through with this SLS, providing the perfect specimen in my eyes. However, I am slightly disappointed by the lack of such features as an opening trunk or lifting spoiler, as mentioned before, but I'll gladly accept their absence in turn for the quality of the model we've gotten. Norev still manages to hold the title of the best Mercedes-Benz modelmaker out there for the price, despite this being a slightly older model from the line. In fact, I think the only thing to make this thing better is a vintage 300SL Gullwing to display it with...maybe next time.