At a glance
One of the greatest brand ambassadors for Mercedes-Benz, the iconic SL-Class combines the engaging driving qualities of a dynamic coupé with the sybaritic pleasures of roadster motoring. It features advanced lightweight aluminium-intensive construction, class-leading aerodynamics, a range of highly efficient forced-induction petrol engines and sophisticated driver-assist and safety technologies. The UK range comprises the SL 400 in AMG Line and Edition trim, and the SL 500, available only in AMG Line trim. A further two AMG models – the SL 63 AMG and the SL 65 AMG – are also available.
The SL 400 – key figures
The SL 400 is powered by a 2,996 cc, turbo-charged V6 petrol engine. Mated to a 9G-Tronic Plus 9-speed transmission, it develops 367 hp at 5,500-6,000 rpm and 500 Nm of torque at 2,000-4,000 rpm for a 4.9 second sprint to 62 mph and an electronically limited 155 mph top speed. Combined economy and CO2 emission figures are 36.7 mpg and an exceptionally low 175 g/km, helped by the standard fitment of ECO start/stop. It weighs 1,735 kg.
The SL 500 – key figures
The SL 500 is powered by a 4,663 cc, turbo-charged V8 petrol engine. Hooked up to a 9G-Tronic Plus 9-speed transmission, it develops 455 hp at 5,250 and 700 Nm of torque at 1,800-3,500 rpm for a 4.3 second sprint to 62 mph and an electronically limited 155 mph top speed. Combined economy and CO2 emission figures are 31.4 mpg and a low 205 g/km, helped by the standard fitment of ECO start/stop. It weighs 1,795 kg.
Lightweight aluminium construction
The body of the SL-Class is composed of 89 per cent aluminium – a construction layout similar to that of the Mercedes-AMG GT super sports car. The only exceptions are the cover behind the fuel tank, which is made from even lighter magnesium, and the high-strength steel tubing, which supports the A-pillars to ensure total occupant protection in the event of a roll-over accident. Compared with the preceding model, which featured a steel construction, this lightweight construction delivers a significant weight saving of around 110 kg, while also enhances rigidity, safety and comfort.
Generous equipment levels
In keeping with their flagship status, both SL 400 and SL 500 feature a raft of advanced driver-assistance, luxury and convenience features. Highlights include the following: 19-inch AMG five-spoke alloy wheels; AMG bodystyling; Panoramic glass vario-roof operable via infrared car key; Sports suspension; Torque Vectoring Brakes; a flat-bottomed AMG Performance four-spoke multi-function nappa leather steering wheel with alloy gear shift paddles; Chequered flag-design instrument cluster; Sports seats with perforated leather upholstery; Intelligent Light System; Adaptive Damping System with Sport and Comfort modes; Magic Vision Control adaptive windscreen wiper system; COMAND Online, and Parameter speed-sensitive power steering.
A roof for all weathers
The electrically-operated fully-automatic folding is available is three formats – the standard vario-roof, the option of the transparent Panoramic vario-roof, and the Panoramic vario-roof featuring the Mercedes-Benz Magic Sky Control system, which allows the light and heat intensity in the cabin to be varied at the touch of a button. The SL-Class also comes as standard with Frontbass®, a unique system of mounting the audio system’s bass speakers in the aluminium structures in front of the footwell. To further enhance the roadster’s roof-down appeal, drivers can opt for the innovative Airscarf neck-level heating feature and the electrically-operated wind-deflector.
Superb safety standards
Arguably the world’s safest roadster-coupé, the SL 400 and the SL 500 feature an ultra-stiff aluminium bodyshell with precisely defined deformation zones and a double-thickness plate floor. In the event of a roll-over, the reinforced steel and aluminium A-pillars and windscreen surround deliver outstanding protection, helped by a pair of pop-up rollover bars housed at the rear of the passenger compartment and Neck-Pro crash-responsive head restraints. Other standard safety features include: Active Bonnet; Adaptive Brake; Attention Assist; Intelligent Light System; Electronic Stability Programme (ESP®) with Acceleration Skid Control (ASR); Magic Vision Control heated adaptive wiper system; six airbags and Pre-Safe® anticipatory safety system.
The SL-Class has a length x width x height of 4,631 x 2,099 x 1,315 mm, and a wheelbase of 2,585 mm. Luggage capacity is 504 litres with the roof in place or 364 litres when it is stowed.