The new SL from Mercedes-Benz was conceived as a pure-bred roadster, i.e. without a fixed roll-over bar which would mar the looks of this open sports car and moreover emphasize the added risk of injury in the event of a roll-over accident. At the same time, the aim was to further enhance occupant safety in the event of such a roll-over. These aims led to the designing of a completely new kind of passive protection system which comes into operation automatically if a roll-over is imminent.Between the rear seats and the soft-top recess, a roll-over bar was therefore integrated; this is mounted on a pivot system and does not affect the apearance of the car when lowered.A sensor system, which is also new, registers driving situations which could result in a roll-over. As a consequence of this, the roll-over bar is raised via a spring/damper mechanism and locked into position.