Sophisticated styling, high-end features, excellent performance, safety, and curb appeal
For 2012, the Mercedes-Benz SLK-Class has been completely redesigned. Now in its third generation, the new SLK-Class features a large AMG-style lower grille up front, as well as a long hood and short rear end, helping to maintain its sporty appearance. As always, a power retractable hardtop is part of the package, which this year is constructed of body-color polycarbonate, or can be upgraded to a clear Panorama Roof. A host of tech gadgets are available, including an optional 'Magic Sky Control' roof, which uses electromagnetics to change the tint of the roof to suit the passengers' tastes.
Two new engines are offered this year, starting with a 201-horsepower turbocharged 1.8L 4-cylinder in the base SLK250. The top-level SLK350 gets a revamped 3.5L V6 making 302 horsepower. Overall styling has been updated throughout, giving it a look similar to the SL-Class roadster, as well as the SLS AMG coupe.
The new Mercedes-Benz SLK-Class takes Mercedes-Benz' concept of a small two-seat roadster to a new level for 2012, offering high-level performance and a great selection of technological features. All this works together to give the car an excellent overall balance of comfort and performance, and for the end-user, it's arguably a better daily driver than the Chevrolet Corvette, Porsche Boxster or BMW Z4 roadster. Priced around $55k, it has many of the same styling cues and a similar look to the much more expensive SLS AMG coupe.
The Mercedes-Benz SLK-Class has been completely redesigned for 2012. The body is now longer and wider than the outgoing model, and features styling cues now familiar across the Mercedes-Benz line--this car looks much like the SLS AMG up front, which means it also looks much like the SL-Class models of Mercedes-Benz' past. Two versions are again offered for 2012: the base-level SLK250, and the higher-performance SLK350.
Both models get new engines for 2012. The SLK250 has an all-new direct-injected 201-horsepower turbocharged 1.8L 4-cylinder in place of last year's 228-horsepower 3.0L V6. The SLK350 has a completely redesigned 3.5L V6, also direct-injected, which makes 302 horsepower--up 2 horsepower over last year's model. The SLK250 can be had with either a 6-speed manual or a seven-speed automatic with paddle shifters, while the SLK350 can only be had in automatic form.
The 7-speed automatic transmission has been upgraded for 2012 as well. A more advanced torque converter has been added, which adds a more sophisticated lockup converter to achieve better fuel mileage, more responsive shifts, and increased strength.
Handling continues to be superb, but has been improved slightly over last year's model. Included with the SLK package is Mercedes-Benz' Direct Steer, which consists of a variable-ratio steering rack that gets tighter as the driver turns from center, as well as adds a bit of steering effort. Mercedes-Benz' Dynamic Handling Package is also available as a special-order item, which features adjustable suspension settings and uses torque vectoring brakes to help steer the car in tight corners.
Standard safety equipment includes Mercedes-Benz' Attention Assist, which monitors the driver and provides an alert if he or she is showing signs of falling asleep at the wheel. Anti-lock brakes, traction control, and anti-skid are also standard. An optional PRE-SAFE Brake system can apply the brakes automatically if the car detects an imminent front-end collision. New reinforced structures improve crash test performance, and a host of airbags, including a new headbag, help further protect both driver and passenger in the event of a collision.
Among the tech features available for 2012 is a new top option called 'Magic Sky,' which can be tinted by the driver at the touch of a button, using an electrical current and chemical film sandwiched between two layers of glass. Any of the available tops can be lowered automatically in about 20 seconds, but the vehicle must be at rest. Airscarf continues to be available, using a stream of warm air around the driver's and passenger's necks to help promote top-down driving, even when the weather isn't warm. An optional 'Airguide' wind deflector mounts to the SLK-Class' rollbars, which helps to limit wind buffeting. Each can be adjusted independently.
Vehicle Price: 43,375.00
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Equipment that may affect values (standard equipment is pre-selected):
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