The cockpit is a real eye-catcher, and not just because of its refined, round dials. “The frame of the instruments was manufactured from artificial mother-of-pearl,” Michael Plag says, as he drives the brown cabriolet down the beautiful 17 Mile Drive. “Back then that was a real innovation – more exclusive than real mother-of-pearl.” Alongside the two perfectly stitched leather seats behind the wheel, just in case, there was also a folding “mother-in-law seat”, allowing the Mercedes-Benz 500 K Special Roadster to be converted into a 2+2 seater. Mostly, however, the two seats were not used by what was presumably an unpopular family member, but they instead held the lady’s luggage. The passengers in the second row would also have been exposed to any precipitation. As, if it is raining heavily, only the front row of the Special Roadster can be protected with a close-cut soft top and side windows.