New Mercedes SL 2022 assessment
AMG’s involvement with this recent mannequin has elevated the SL to new heights. It’s nonetheless a terrific roadster, however one which now gives extra driving enjoyable than ever earlier than. Its engine is likely to be outdated in contrast with Mercedes’ trendy EVs, however whereas the SL boasts some excellent superior tech, even this may’t cowl the delightfully interesting old-school allure at its coronary heart.
The Mercedes SL has constantly reduce it visually, however dynamically it’s all the time been extra of a cruiser than a automobile to carve up corners in. In the event you needed a convertible automobile that dealt with sharply, that was the Porsche 911 Cabriolet’s job – till now.
For this new SL, Mercedes has enlisted the assistance of AMG to develop a brand new inflexible aluminium platform – known as Modular Sports activities Structure – which can even underpin the following AMG GT. It goals to place agility and driving enjoyment proper on the coronary heart of the expertise, and from our first style of the range-topping SL 63 4MATIC+ variant we’re driving right here, it has succeeded.
Regardless of the brand new SL’s still-significant weight of round two tonnes, its super-sharp steering offers it loads of agility for such an enormous automobile. Generally the steering feels a bit over-sensitive on the motorway, however on twisty roads it is smart, pointing the lengthy nostril into turns with millimetric precision, helped by its rear-wheel-steering set-up.
In lengthy, quick corners the SL feels beautifully steady and locked onto your chosen line, helped by lively roll stabilisation that retains the physique degree; solely out of a good hairpin on moist tarmac will the rear wheels break traction (an electronically managed limited-slip differential is customary) – however it’s solely a twitch and the four-wheel-drive tech steps in instantly to assist regulate the SL’s angle and deploy its appreciable firepower from below the bonnet.
With 577bhp and 800Nm of torque from a well-known 4.0-litre twin-turbo V8, the SL has straight-line efficiency lined, whereas all-wheel drive offers unimaginable traction for a 3.6-second 0-62mph dash. It thrusts you again in your seat, though generally there’s a really slight delay within the response from the powertrain whereas the nine-speed computerized gearbox kinds itself out.
The noise delivers the type of AMG thunder we count on, enhancing the SL’s sharp character, however within the extra relaxed driving modes refinement continues to be sturdy. That’s regardless of its predecessor’s folding hard-top being changed by a soft-top hood, which is definitely 21kg lighter than the earlier association.
It’s comfy and properly insulated with the hood up, and the set-up takes 15 seconds to decrease electronically at speeds of as much as 37 mph. There are myriad driving modes, so the SL might be tailor-made to your preferences, however even in Consolation there’s a greater connection to the highway than in any earlier version.
The brand new automobile is a 2+2, with two small rear seats. They’re compact and possibly finest suited to kids, however they add helpful further baggage house, as a result of the boot capability is barely 213 litres with the roof folded down.
Because of some huge modifications inside, there’s way more house within the entrance of this new SL than in previous fashions. A pair of sports activities seats with Mercedes’ trademark Airscarf air flow system that blows heat air onto your neck are fitted as customary.
The SL additionally encompasses a 12.3-inch digital sprint, whereas infotainment is taken care of by a centrally mounted 11.9-inch touchscreen, angled up in direction of turbine-like spherical metallic air vents. The angle at which it rests might be altered to swimsuit the lighting situations (useful when the roof is lowered), whereas the system is just like that within the model’s S-Class luxurious saloon, so its graphics are simply as crisp and it really works simply as properly; you possibly can management many features by the panel, together with the roof-folding mechanism.
Costs have nonetheless to be confirmed, however the SL 63 may begin from round £140,000 when it goes on sale. And also you’ll want an enormous price range to run one, with claimed effectivity of 23.9mpg and CO2 emissions of 268g/km.
|Mannequin:||Mercedes-AMG SL 63 4Matic+|
|Engine:||4.0-litre twin-turbo V8|
|Transmission:||9-speed dual-clutch computerized, four-wheel drive|