Frankfurt: Mercedes SLK55 AMG

This isn't the first time Mercedes has squeezed a massive engine into the tiny SLK - the last generation received the same treatment. Attempt number two has resulted in, naturally, more power. The last generation's 360hp has turned into 422hp and the 0-62mph time has fallen three tenths to 4.6 seconds.

Despite having a more powerful motor the new SLK55 AMG is (comparatively) better for the environment than a BMW Z4 sDrive35i. The Merc emits 195g/km CO2, while the BMW squirts out 219g/km... Combined fuel economy is up to 33.6mpg (if you drive like an NEDC test driver), the BMW manages a 30.1. And it's slower.

The engine is a de-turbo'd evolution of the same 5.5-litre V8 found in the E63 AMG, CLS63 AMG and others. It comes with a start/stop function for town driving, which is handy. The SLK55 AMG also benefits from a cylinder shut off system, which sees cylinder two, three, five and eight deactivated while the car is under partial load. It's technology Mercedes tried some years back on the CL coupe but is even more relevant now.

Who cares about partial load though. Give the SLK55 the beans and you'll be rewarded with a dose more noise as flaps in the exhaust open up to release more of that V8 goodness. Will this be the first truly PH-worthy SLK? Perhaps the fact AMG has fitted it with a traditional auto, albeit seven-speed, rather than the faster-shifting MCT transmission from the facelifted C63 doesn't bode especially well.

P.H. O'meter

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Comments (41) Join the discussion on the forum

  • Frimley111R 13 Sep 2011

    The front of it still has that hideous grille though.

  • E21_Ross 13 Sep 2011

    some pretty impressive figures there but i'm not so sure on the looks, looks like it's trying a little too hard and not well rounded in my personal opinion. that paint doesn't work either!

  • JohnG1 13 Sep 2011

    The MCT box in the SL63 AMG is agricultural when compared to the PDK box in the 911. So a full slush box will suck...

  • thewheelman 13 Sep 2011

    Pretty ugly, the played out white with black wheels doesn't help its cause. Maybe a deep blue or red & some gunmetal coloured wheels would do the styling more favours. I would p/shop if i knew how to do it....but i don't.

  • spiritof'76 13 Sep 2011

    Prefer the pointy nose of the previous shape rolleyes

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