/2012 NAIAS: Mercedes Benz SL-Class

2012 NAIAS: Mercedes Benz SL-Class

mercedes sl detroit 3 at 2012 NAIAS: Mercedes Benz SL Class

The sixth generation of one of the world’s most iconic cars celebrates its world premiere today at Detroit Motor Show 2012.

As it’s the case with all Merc SLs the new generation shares little with the one it replaces in terms of aesthetics. We didn’t like the new SL when we first laid eyes on it — to be brutally honest we hated it a bit – but it’s the kind of design that’ll grow on you much quicker than you’d expect. It’s certainly grown on us.

We’re starting to see some sort of strange beauty in those big eyes of the SL, which frankly make the car look like a startled bambi.

mercedes sl detroit 1 at 2012 NAIAS: Mercedes Benz SL Class

The new generation Mercedes SL is made almost entirely out of aluminum, and that means it’s about 140kg lighter than the previous model, which was always mocked for its chubbiness. This Sl though is light on its feet, and with a range of upgraded engines it’s sure to offer a much nicer driving experience.

mercedes sl detroit 2 at 2012 NAIAS: Mercedes Benz SL Class

The new V8 engine in the SL500 (Sl550 in America) makes 435 hp and 700 Nm of torque, which is astonishing for a naturally aspirated engine, especially as it is 22 percent more fuel efficient. The good old 3.5 liter V6 is tweaked too, and offers 306 hp and 370 Nm of torque. Both engine variants come with a standard-fit ECO start/stop function. The 7G-TRONIC PLUS automatic transmission, which has been optimised in relation to fuel consumption and comfort, also contributes to the exemplary, low fuel consumption.

mercedes sl detroit 4 at 2012 NAIAS: Mercedes Benz SL Class

2013 Mercedes SL comes with some new clever tech as well, chief among which are the Magic View Control, which is basically a new type pf windscreen wiper with washer nozzles located on the blade, so the passengers won’t get showered when the top is down, and the front bass system which puts subwoofers of the audio system in the footwells. Apparently that makes a big difference in the overall sound experience.

mercedes sl detroit 6 at 2012 NAIAS: Mercedes Benz SL Class

We are impatiently waiting for the AMG versions of this car, not just to see how they look, but also to find out what kind of weapons-grade engine AMG has come up with this time.

Orders for the new SL commenced on 15 December 2011. The prices including 19% VAT are as follows:

  • SL 350 BlueEFFICIENCY: 93,534.00 euros
  • SL 500 BlueEFFICIENCY: 117,096.00 euros

mercedes sl detroit 5 at 2012 NAIAS: Mercedes Benz SL Class

Dr Dieter Zetsche, Chairman of the Board of Management of Daimler AG and Head of Mercedes-Benz Cars: “There are around 900 million cars in the world and thousands of models. But there are only a handful of automotive icons. Our SL is one of them: it has class, it has style, it is the ultimate in comfort and luxury. But it combines all that with incredible sportiness and dynamism. You would struggle to find a car that embodies Gottlieb Daimler’s aspiration more perfectly than our new SL: the best or nothing.”

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(Founder / Chief Editor / Journalist) – Arman is the original founder of Motorward.com, which he kept until August 2009. Currently Arman is our chief editor and is held responsible for a large part of the news we publish.