MercedesBenz SLKclass (R171)

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Mercedes-Benz R171

Mercedes SLK-class (R171)

T he SLK stands for Sport, Light and it implies the car is the compact version of SL, it is actually derived from the platform. Since its birth in the first generation SLK found buyers worldwide, making it the selling roadster after MX-5, and perhaps the most one. A number of reasons to its success, the most important of is the electric-folding metal roof it By touching a button, the roof seamlessly from the boot and the SLK from a convertible to a hard-top People loved the high-tech it brought. This feature unique in the world until the of Peugeot 206CC. The French almost 5 years to imitate idea!

However, the first SLK had various flaws preventing it challenging Porsche Boxster. of all, it was derived from the C-class, sharing the same recirculating-ball steering which feel. Secondly, its chassis was not stiff, therefore when AMG it into SLK32 AMG it had to stiffen the to the extent that hurt quality. People saw it as a hot rod, un-Mercedes indeed. Thirdly, the SLK received any great engines. The cars relied on a rough 2.3 four-cylinder. A much more 3.2-litre V6 joined in 2000, but it the eagerness of its BMW and Porsche rivals. although it was commercially successful, car liked to call it hairdresser’s In other words, high on low on ability.

Comparatively, the second generation codenamed R171, is a much complete product. It might be of surprise and innovation, but it is highly in most important areas, build quality, comfort, engine to performance. The only is price — at 34,000 SLK350 is not only more than Nissan 350Z, BMW Z4, TT V6, Lotus Elise 111R, S2000, but also overshadows Boxster. However, it is also the pricing proves that the car is good, because discounts appear in undesirable cars.

the old car, the new SLK is derived from the platform, but this one is the latest C-class. It uses rack-and-pinion a 3-link strut-type suspensions up and a multi-link setup at the rear. The is slightly but not overly larger, a wheelbase stretch of just to free up legroom. Basically, the SLK is a shortened version of the C-class, 285mm chopped from the Therefore it is lighter and more than the C-class. Exterior is smoother and sleeker. A more raked windscreen and a smoother reduce drag coefficient to The most striking feature is a nose, making it look a comical version of SLR,

The new car has improved the roof further, the time needed for opening or to 22 seconds. Moreover, it follows its brother SL to use a rear window automatically rotate 180-degree to boot space. In this when the roof is stored, the still offers a generous 208 of luggage space, 63 litres than before. When the is up, it increases to 300 litres.

Better news is found in the Ladies and Gentlemen, first-class has finally come back to since the 1996 E-class, sacrificed its long-standing reputation as the highest quality mass cars in order to cut cost. Its thought the 3-pointed star can sustain the damage, but unfortunately, car writers and J.D. Power are not fooled. The market gradually that Mercedes cars lag Audi, Volkswagen and BMW in quality. God, in the new SLK, Mercedes is determined to fight back. in the cockpit, you can see a beautifully made combining the style of Alfa and the quality of Audi. Soft-touch is used throughout the cabin. All the handles, switches and buttons are damped to deliver a quality Dark plastics are decorated blue LCD and alloy-effect buttons / Welcome back to a real

SLK has 3 engines to choose from. The model is SLK200 Kompressor. It the M271-series 1.8-liter (yes, not introduced to C-class recently. It has shafts, variable valve and supercharger to pump out 163hp and Performance is adequate rather remarkable, but it is tractable, fuel and fulfills its job well as an entry-level

Next one, SLK350. is also the pick of the range and to be the best seller. The 3.5-litre V6 is not a of the existing 3.2 V6 but the first member of a new V6 / V8 family. It packs a lot of advanced such as all-alloy construction, dual-VVT, 2-stage variable manifolds and, you guess the return of 4 valves per cylinder! I in 1996 when Mercedes back to 3 valves per cylinder it that was the only way to pass emission regulations. The premature did not come true. Today, is eating its words and relaunching 4 per cylinder engines. The new 3.5 V6 pumps out a 272hp and 258lbft, more all rivals bar Nissan 350Z.

The top is SLK55 AMG, powered by the engine as C55 AMG — a 360hp / 376 5.5-litre V8 that belongs to the old V6 / V8. However, I will leave car in a separate report. Now let’s to the mainstream SLK350.

The new V6 is excellent powerful, flexible, creamy and produces exciting exhaust once you push it. You might say descriptions can also be found in engines, so let us compare with our BMW’s 231hp 3.0 inline-6. The V6 is 500cc larger, but it achieves the efficiency as the smaller BMW engine. translate to an advantage of 41 horsepower and 37 of torque. Its bottom-end torque is astonishing: a total of 258 lbft is from 2400 to 5000rpm, 225 of which (already more the maximum BMW can generate) is available as low as 1500rpm. the Mercedes V6 also a sonorous exhaust noise the civilized BMW. The only is that it does not rev as high as the Its maximum power occurs at and engine cut out at 6400rpm.

Mercedes-Benz R171

The V6 mates with a new 6-speed gearbox whose shift is much improved from the generation. It is not as super-slick as some products, but clean and precise According to Mercedes, with gearbox SLK350 can sprint rest to 60mph in 5.5 seconds. it is beaten by the new 7G-Tronic automatic by 0.1 seconds, because the latter has a of 7 forward gears. now driving are puzzling which one is the best — automatic for sheer manual for pure fun.

is definitely a strength of SLK350. from the flyweight Lotus (Elise 111R and Opel Turbo), I can’t think of any in this segment can beat it. S2000 and Nissan 350Z maybe the closest to 60mph, but can rival the Mercedes’ superior above 100mph. According to test, SLK350 with gearbox arrives 60mph in 5.6 and 100mph in 13.6 seconds. An condition S2000 did that in 5.6 sec and sec respectively, while 350Z 5.8 sec and 14.2 sec — but that was a instead of the heavier Roadster. The rivals are slower: BMW Z4 3.0 took 5.6 sec and sec. Porsche Boxster 2.7 6.3 sec and 15.2 sec. They are not in the league of SLK350. There is one however — Chrysler SRT-6. But I think few people consider a Chrysler-badged roadster from the old SLK when they can get the new and SLK.

On the road, apart from the speed and flexibility, the new SLK also its driver by its comfortable ride Mercedes is still the only car maker knowing how to deal broken surfaces as well as Even on British B-roads, the SLK use of its long-travel suspensions and well-tuned to absorb bumps and irregularities. The is a supple ride unfound in BMW Z4 and Boxster, simply in the league of

The Mercedes also beats BMW for control and steering feel, overall handling. It also as quick as Porsche Boxster, but is more body roll and less steering feel and on throttle. In other words, it is as inspired nor as involving to drive as After all, the Porsche is a sports car with lower of gravity and a chassis tuned to demanding drivers. In contrast, the is designed to appeal to broader base — sales is to be 3 times that of the Boxster. It has to a smooth ride and a steering of road harshness when That said, Mercedes has the right balance point. One is the steering — at first, it not very communicative on the straight The more you turn the wheel, the information flows through. when you want to … just when the car approach the steering becomes totally

No roadster is more relaxed in Surrounding you is a beautifully-made cabin the name Mercedes-Benz. When the top is wind flow and noise are deflected from the cabin. All you is the smooth running engine, the ride and the rigid chassis so of NVH. With abundance of you don’t need to make Tall gearing means the cruises at fairly low rev, quietly. This is the best way to the new generation hairdresser’s car — but time it is high on image, on ability. A new class leader has

The above report was last on 29 Jul 2004 . All Rights Reserved.

Mercedes-Benz R171
Mercedes-Benz R171
Mercedes-Benz R171


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