The R107 was always going to be a hard act to follow, so Mercedes-Benz didn’t rush into it. In fact, the R129’s eight-year gestation period was longer than many cars’ production runs. It took five years alone to develop the roll-over bar that pops up in 0.03sec if the car titls to 26º. As ae result it arrived as a very well-resolved machine, built the old-school Mercedes way and without the cost-cutting and corrosion issues that plagued other Nineties Mercs. It was also, in the manner of the R107, quite a lump – best viewed as a fast convertible rather than an out-and-out sports car. But that’s what SL buyers had become attuned to and wanted. They still do; the car played to the established market. In that way it is a true successor to the R107, a little larger and heavier but finally making a break and moving the SL’s appearance on into a new era from the recognisable style set by Bruno Sacco with the first Pagoda more than 25 years earlier.