Mercedes-Benz' AMG performance arm developed the SLR in conjunction with F1 luminary McLaren, and the result is one of the finest cars in the world. For 2008 it carries revised bodywork, with a retractable fabric soft top that can be lowered in less than ten seconds. The engine is a hand-built 5.5L supercharged V8 engine with twin intercoolers that produces 617 horsepower and 575 ft-lbs of torque. All of that power is directed to the rear wheels through a five-speed automatic transmission that features three manual modes.
The SLR boasts technology and design that is typically seen only on the race track, including a dry-sump lubrication system for a low center of gravity, a carbon-fiber reinforced plastic body, and underbody panels to enhance aerodynamics. This package ends up running to 60 mph in fewer than four seconds.
The SLR McLaren has large Brembo ceramic disc brakes fitted underneath 19-inch forged aluminum wheels, and rides on a stiff suspension setup. Its aluminum chassis is connected to forged aluminum double wishbones in the front and rear.
The relatively long wheelbase and wide track give the SLR the feeling of a true touring convertible, while the sound and power produced by the V8 elevate it to supercar status.
Inside, the seats are trimmed with leather and Alcantara. Aluminum shift levers are mounted behind the handsome suede-wrapped steering wheel, and aluminum pedals and carbon fiber appliques give the car a purposeful tone. The center stack is an impeccable piece of design. The usual luxury features, such as dual-zone automatic climate control and Bluetooth, are standard. Gullwing doors echo the famed Mercedes-Benz 300SL coupe of the 1950s.
The Mercedes-Benz McLaren SLR roadster is one of the most exclusive models being produced for the 2008 model year by any manufacturer. And while its sticker price may stop just short of a half million dollars, it offers performance that only a handful of production cars on the planet can match.
Mercedes-Benz has changed the well regarded SLR McLaren from a coupe to a roadster for the 2008 model year. The engine ratings match the 2006 numbers of 617 horsepower and 575 ft-lbs of torque. Though Mercedes-Benz has neither confirmed nor denied future plans for the SLR, 2008 is rumored to be the last year for the Teutonic supercar.
World-beating performance now in top-down guise; exclusivity; unmistakable looks.
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