MercedesBenz SLK 55 AMG (2005) and AMG S65 (2005)…

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Mercedes-Benz SLK 55 AMG Base

Mercedes-Benz SLK 55 AMG (2005-) and AMG S65 (2005-) 2005)

First Drive: SLK 55 AMG and S65 AMG

Model tested: SLK 55 AMG


Price as tested: see text

tester: Mike Sinclair

tested: March 2005

covered: see text

BOTTOM No replacement for displacement.

The flagship of the SLK the SLK 55 AMG boasts some impressive Built to bury BMW’s Z4 and Porsche’s all-conquering Boxster S the roadster is the sole V8-engined car in its and delivers cutting edge in the form of composite brakes and impressive seven-speed automatic

Launched in 3.5-litre V6 form in the SLK is strictly a two-seater convertible. equipped with the all the 350’s and then some, its folding roof is (like the lesser a work of art. Not only it fold away in seconds, it to ensure the car looks good, up or down.

The SLK 55 shares its 5439cc V8 C 55 and CLK 55 models. Naturally aspirated, the records a healthy 265kW at rpm, with peak of 510Nm registered at 4000 That’s enough mumbo to it from 0-100km/h in a claimed AMG further claims the 200km/h in just 17.5sec away standstill.

What those figures show is the in-gear abilities of the SLK 55. with the seven-speed autobox, the car hard seemingly at will anything approaching sane No need to worry about the manual shifts, just the right foot and let the adaptive box do its

CarPoint sampled the SLK during annual media drive on one of the roads in SE Australia. Winding its way the top of Australia, the bitumen in question Australia’s highest town not Nimbin) with the sleepy fishing village of Khancoban, a stepping stone to the all-tar Way. This is a road of descents, equally challenging and plenty of corners that little in the way of margin for error.

On sort of going the SLK 55 shone. The of the engine/gearbox combination lets the concentrate on positioning the car just so – no given the car’s precise and neutral handling characteristics.

revised suspension settings and anti-roll bars the SLK seems the worse balance-wise for the installation of the engine. Indeed, though the car have the tactile steering of, say, Porsche’s Boxster, in turn-in seems as eager as the SLK 350 and a up on anything the Z4 can deliver. And while big are transmitted, the ride was surprisingly — even on its l-o-w 225/40 (front) and 245/35 rubber. Just how it compares to the Boxster S will probably back-to-back driving to decode.

And if ambitions get in the way of ability, there’s brakes! AMG terms its high-performance system as ‘composite’. Don’t this with ceramic however. In the case of the SLK, the diameter ventilated front are cast iron, but are mated to an centre via a sliding bearing allows for both axial and movement. According to AMG the combination of discs and the large pad surfaces of the front callipers ensure thermal resistance coupled optimum deceleration.

In practice, lesser Benzs and, the C 55, the SLK 55’s brake pedal high and yields immediate and bite — time time.

The SLK includes a full of driver aids. According to Electronic Stability Program traction control (ASR) and Assist, have been for sporting drivers. Indeed, we the ‘off’ button alone and the only time it intruded on fun was we were being deliberately out of some second-gear hairpins.

What we did do was drop the lid and enjoy the volume of the SLK’s sonorous note. Some reviews commented negatively on the volume of the 55 for our money the soundtrack’s just

As you’d expect from a car such sporting pretensions, it the Cabramurra-Thredbo thrash with At the end the only evidence was the ticking of brakes and a driver with a a mile wide. Exploring the of this AMG’s performance a racetrack or a driver with bigger cojones than truly.

Model tested: S 65 AMG

RRP: $435,900

Price as see text

Mercedes-Benz SLK 55 AMG Base

Road tester: Sinclair

Date tested: 2005

Distance covered: see

BOTTOM LINE: Absolute corrupts absolutely.

Menacing. That’s the word springs to mind when you spy the ultimate four-door AMG. I the impression is magnified when the car in is presented black on black – upholstery, dash, windows right the way down to the 19-inch and infeasibly low profile tyres.

The S 65 AMG is the choice of F1 drivers and Russian alike. Equipped with conceivable optional extra the rear seats are electronically and heated and cooled) it’s the expression of the German performance – at least until AMG gets its on a Maybach.

Rational evaluation of car is pointless. For a start, the numbers by the hand-built twin-turbo 6.0lt V12 are hard for us mere mortals to Producing 450kW and an astonishing of torque, the S 65 boasts close to times the power and torque of the model Mercedes S 350 – itself no Unfettled this car runs to a 192mph! That’s over Only Mercedes corporate keep the AMG car electronically-limited to 250km/h.

the traction control in place and the 2.6-tonne behemoth sprints to in less time than it to read this sentence – in fact. Turn the traction off and you’ll consign the rear ZR19 hoops to the recycler in the same length of time.

Floor the throttle at any speed 200km/h and you’ll experience the of acceleration most cars for traffic light grands If the engine (voted International Engine of the Year in 2004) to kick down the five-speed it’s barely noticeable – you’re concentration is firmly front and centre. Better sure there’s plenty of in front if you’re intending to let car stretch its legs.

The sheer of the S 65 AMG is intoxicating, but needs to be treated a double dose of respect. is the in-gear flexibility and effortlessness of the that it’s easy to at the next corner with 30, 40 or more in hand than is Fortunately the car’s underpinnings are to cope. The S 65 AMG (and sistership CL 65 is equipped with Active Control (ABC) and bespoke AMG with firmer damping and composite brakes – 390mm in at the pointy end and gripped by eight (!)

ABC utilises ‘smart’ suspension to limit body roll and Best to leave it switched on too if intending to use any welly. Indeed, to its own devices (literally) this is car is quick point to point. takes its toll, however, just one day of the recent AMG drive in the Mountains, the S 65’s front were all but shot.

We could write about the S 65 safety features, comfort, trick adaptive front even the comprehensive audio package, but what’s the point. power corrupts absolutely who do I have to kill to get one.

Tuesday, 1 March 2005

Mercedes-Benz SLK 55 AMG Base
Mercedes-Benz SLK 55 AMG Base
Mercedes-Benz SLK 55 AMG Base
Mercedes-Benz SLK 55 AMG Base


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