Sir Stirling Moss and the Mercedes-Benz 300 SLR (W 196 S) return to the Mille Miglia
Italy, 1955, one scorching hot day, 1,600 kilometres of winding public road, over 20 of the top racing cars, drivers and teams from across the world excitedly await the start of the Mille Miglia. The scene is set for what is about to become the “most epic drive, ever” – Motor Trend.
Waiting for this infamous race to start are 25 year old Sir Stirling Moss and his co-driver Dennis Jenkinson, competing in what Sir Stirling Moss declares as the “greatest sports car ever made” – the Mercedes-Benz 300 SLR (W 196 S).
The 300 SLR was the worlds most advanced race car of its time, boasting a direct fuel-injected straight-8 engine with a top speed of over 300 km/h and 302 horsepower and let’s not forget to mention the stunning looks of this sports car. This beautiful and ground breaking 300 SLR proved to be the perfect machine for Sir Stirling Moss and partner to roar through the public streets of Brescia, Italy. With an eye wateringly fast average speed of 98.53 miles per hour, the 300 SLR enabled the duo to complete (and win) the race in just 10 hours, 7 minutes and 48 seconds, a record that has never been beaten and perhaps one of the greatest race performances of all time.
Fast forward some 60 years to May 2015 and Sir Stirling Moss, Hans Hermann and Ralf Schumacher are proudly lining up on the Mille Miglia route to drive the Mercedes-Benz 300 SLR, the very same original car (with the infamous starting number 722) that Stirling Moss and Dennis Jenkinson won the race in, back in 1955.
“The 722 is a really strong car…” said Moss. “The fact the car’s really old doesn’t matter—that car, the way it is now, I reckon we’d beat any other cars, anyway!”
Today the Mille Milglia provides a stunning stage every year in May to around 400 of the worlds most beautiful and classic cars. Find out more about the Mille Miglia here: