|Mercedes-Benz 350SL 2004|
The Mercedes-Benz R 129 models were produced from 1989 through to 2001 and sold under the SL-Class model names. The R129 replaced the R107 SL-Class in 1989 and was subsequently replaced by the R230 in 2001.The R129 was based on the shortened floorpan of the Mercedes-Benz W124 saloon and featured many innovative details for the time. The R129 came to public attention in 1991 when Diana, Princess of Wales, sold her Jaguar XJS to lease a J-registration, metallic-red 500 SL, becoming the first member of the Royal Family to use a foreign car. This controversy sparked a media storm as it was questioned whether a member of British Royalty should drive a foreign car. The fifth generation of the legendary SL series, made by Mercedes-Benz, was known as the R230. It featured a fully retractable hardtop that was marketed as the Vario Roof- a first for the SL class although it had been available on the smaller SLK model since 1997.