Mercedes-Benz SL R230 fifth generation
|Production||2001 - 2012|
|Assembly||Bremen, Germany Santiago Tianguistenco, Mexico|
|Engine||3.0L 228 hp (170 kW) V6 3.5L 268 hp (200 kW) V6 5.5L 383 hp (286 kW) V8 5.4L 510 hp (380 kW) V8 5.5L 510 hp (380 kW) V12 6.2L 518 hp (386 kW) V8 6.0L 604 hp (450 kW) V12|
|Transmission||5-speed automatic 7-speed automatic|
|Wheelbase||100.8 in (2,560 mm)|
|Length||178.5 in (4,534 mm)|
|Width||2005-present: 71.5 in (1,816 mm) 2003-04: 72.0 in (1,829 mm)|
|Height||51.0 in (1,295 mm)|
280,350,500,550,63 AMG,55 AMG,600,65 AMG,BLACK
The Mercedes-Benz R230 automobile was introduced in 2001. It was sold as the SL-Class convertible, replacing the R129.
In early 1996, over 6 years into the life of R129, development work on a successor began. On January 27, 1996 design work commenced and draft designs were submitted from ten designers in Germany, California, and Japan. Hundreds of sketches were submitted and would form the basis for twelve quarter scale models which were digitized for computer manipulation. Design of the R230 would progress through two different formats. The real world process centered on the traditional 1:4 scale models, with most of them initially being done clay. Virtual world design development took place in a room packed with state-of-the-art computer processing technology referred to as the “CAVE.” This technology was also used to design the W203 in 1995.
The supercomputer in the “CAVE” (Computer Aided Virtual Environment) was able to create full-size images of selected designs, using its five projectors and allowing designers to inspect every inch of every surface rendered. Parallel to the virtual process, the twelve scale models were scrutinized as well, with four standouts chosen to be created in full-size mockups. This evolution of the scale models occurred alongside the development of the interior design. In 1997, design work concluded and on June 16, 1997, the final design for the R230 was approved by the board and refined into production specifications into 1998. The design patents for the R230 were later filed in Germany on September 9, 1999 and on March 1, 2000 in the United States.
In July 2001, after over 5 years of development, the new SL was unveiled and introduced at the 2001 Frankfurt Auto Show that September. Production began on October 13, 2001 at the Bremen plant and European sales commenced that November.
The safety car originally appeared in 2001 German Grand Prix in Hockenheim. Street version was unveiled in IAA 2001.
|SL 350||2003–2006||3,724 cubic centimetres (227.3 cu in) V6 (M112)||245 PS (180 kW; 242 hp)@5700||350 N·m (260 lb·ft) @3000-4500|
|SL 500||2001–2006||4,966 cubic centimetres (303.0 cu in) V8 (M113)||306 PS (225 kW; 302 hp)@5600||460 N·m (340 lb·ft) @2700-4250|
|SL 55 AMG||2002–2006||5,439 cubic centimetres (331.9 cu in) V8 supercharged (M113)||476 PS (350 kW; 469 hp)@6100||700 N·m (520 lb·ft) @2650-4500|
|SL 600||2003–2006||5,513 cubic centimetres (336.4 cu in) V12 BiTurbo (M275)||500 PS (368 kW; 493 hp)@5000||800 N·m (590 lb·ft) @1800-3600|
|SL 65 AMG||2004-||5,980 cubic centimetres (365 cu in) V12 BiTurbo (M275 AMG)||612 PS (450 kW; 604 hp)@4800-5100||1,000 N·m (740 lb·ft) @2000-4000|
Changes include new engines for SL 350 and SL 500, with improved performance on SL 55 AMG and SL 600, as well as a new top-of-the-line SL 65 AMG.ABC (Active Body Control) was improved to reduce body movements in dynamic driving by up to 60%.
Exterior styling changes include a new bumper with three large cooling air intakes and a more pronounced V-shape as well as fog lamps with chrome surrounds emphasise the power of the two-seater and give it a wider look, new light-alloy wheels, new rear light. Interior changes include softer leather upholstery, new interior colours, high-quality metal door sills with Mercedes-Benz lettering and embossed aluminium trim elements, removable luggage cover, optional remote boot-lid release.
The vehicle was unveiled in 2006 Geneva Motor Show. Production version began sale in 2006-03.
The facelifted SL loses AMG's 5.4L M113 in favour of the newer M156 6.2L V8 used in the S63 AMG, CLK63 AMG and C63 AMG. It produces 525 PS (386 kW; 518 hp) at 6800 rpm and 630 N·m (460 lb·ft) of torque at 5200 rpm. It can accelerate from rest to 100 km/h (62 mph) in 4.6 seconds going up to a limited top speed of 250 km/h (155 mph). The SL63 AMG also includes the new AMG-developed 7-speed MCT "Multi Clutch Technology" automatic transmission.
The new MCT transmission is essentially the 7G-Tronic transmission without a torque converter. Instead of a torque converter, it uses a compact wet startup clutch to start the car off, and also supports computer-controlled double declutching. The MCT (Multi-Clutch Technology) acronym refers to a planetary (automatic) transmission’s multiple clutches and bands for each gear.
The MCT is fitted with four drive modes: “C” (Comfort), “S” (Sport), “S+” (Sport plus) and “M” (Manual) and boasts 100 millisecond shifts in "M" mode. The new car features the new AMG DRIVE UNIT with innovative Race Start function. The AMG DRIVE UNIT is the central control unit for the AMG SPEEDSHIFT MCT 7-speed sports transmission and all driving dynamics functions. The driver can change gears either using the new AMG selector lever with its leather/ carbon-fibre finish, or by nudging the AMG steering-wheel shift paddles. The new Race start Function is a launch control system which enables the SL 63 AMG driver to call on maximum acceleration, while ensuring optimum traction of the driven wheels. A modified version of the SL 63 is the safety car for the 2008 Formula One season.
The new SL65 AMG Black Series coupe features a carbon-fiber fixed roof, front fenders, hood, trunk lid, and front and rear aprons. With the absence of retractable roof hardware, the car is more than 550 pounds lighter than the standard SL. AMG placed a modified version of the 6.0-liter AMG V12 engine that now delivers 670 PS (493 kW) and 1,000 N·m (740 lb·ft) of torque. This is the same 6.0L engine as used in the previous SL65 model with remapped timing and fuel curves to produce 58 PS more. Torque remains the same, as the previous model, due to transmission limitations. This engine has been labeled as the engine with the largest output that will be made by AMG. Its twin turbochargers are 12 percent larger, passages for intake air and the turbo wastegates have been modified, and the intake air intercooler is 30 percent more efficient. The result is 0-to-60 mph (97 km/h) acceleration of 3.8 seconds, and an electronically limited top speed of 198 mph (319 km/h).
SL 63 AMG Edition IWC (2008-)
It is a limited (200 units) version of SL 63 AMG. It included designo magno Kashmir white finish, AMG Exterior Carbon package with matte surface, interior Carbon matte trim with Tobago Brown nappa leather upholstery, AMG Performance package, 'Grosse Ingenieur' (Big Engineer) watch from Swiss watchmaker IWC Schaffhausen
The vehicle went on sale beginning in fall 2008, with deliveries beginning in November 2008.
SL 65 AMG Black Series (2008-)
It is a performance version of the SL 65 AMG. The turbochargers were 12% larger, and the optimised wastegate ducts permit increased air throughput. Intake air ducting and exhaust system were modified to improve response and reduce the exhaust gas backpressure. Vehicle was 250 kilograms (550 lb) lighter than regular SL 65 AMG by the use of light carbon fibre composites (CFRP) parts. Another big item on weight reduction was removing the foldable hardtop roof, replacing it with a fixed roof. Not only did this save much weight, it also made room available for the retractable rear spoiler.
The AMG SPEEDSHIFT PLUS five-speed automatic transmission include "C", "S", "M1" and "M2" which has gearshift times 25 percent quicker than the "M1" mode. Black Series front axle track width is 97 millimetres wider and the rear axle track width 85 millimetres wider over regular model.
Other changes include retractable rear spoiler and the rear apron with diffuser fins, 265/35R19 front tyres with 19x9.5 inch AMG light-alloy wheels and AMG 20x11.5-inch light-alloy wheels with 325/30R20 tyres (Dunlop Sport Maxx GT tyres), 6-piston front calipers with 390x36mm discs and 4-piston calipers with 360x26mm discs.
The vehicle was unveiled in Monterey in 2008.
Production vehicle began delivery in 2008-11.
SL Night Edition (2010-)
It is a version of SL roadster with 19-inch AMG five-spoke light-alloy wheels in a two-tone high-gloss finish, silver-painted front brake callipers with the Mercedes-Benz logo, darkened headlamps/tail lights, black nappa leather upholstery with shining chrome trim, seats with arrow-shaped seams and silver-coloured contrasting features, sports steering wheel and shift lever and roof lining in black, trim strip of the draught-stop has a high-gloss finish, silver-coloured vents at AIRSCARF system.
Grand Edition (2011-)
It is a version of SL300, SL350, and SL500 commemorating 125th anniversary of Karl Benz inventing automobile.
SL 350 Grand Edition included 19-inch AMG 5-spoke alloy wheel in titanium, front brake callipers with the Mercedes-Benz logo, drill bench rated brake discs, twin chrome square exhaust tips, chrome shoulder line trim, high gloss door handle, Grand Edition side emblem, nappa leather seat, SLR design shift knob, prism pattern aluminium trim, silver colour AIRSCARF vent, chrome door sill plate, chrome draught strap, floor mat with Grand Edition logo, ashtray with Grand Edition logo. Other options include AMG sport package, desino piano lacquer black wood trim.
SL 500 Grand Edition included 19-inch AMG 5-spoke alloy wheel in titanium, front brake callipers with the Mercedes-Benz logo, drill bench rated brake discs, twin chrome square exhaust tips, chrome shoulder line trim, high gloss door handle, Grand Edition side emblem, SLR design shift knob, desino piano lacquer black wood trim, silver colour AIRSCARF vent, chrome door sill plate, chrome draught strap, floor mat with Grand Edition logo, ashtray with Grand Edition logo. Other options include AMG sport package.
In 2007, Mercedes created a 75 limited-edition 50th Anniversary SL550s. According to another article, Mercedes created 550 of these cars, all pewter in colour with burgundy leather, black ash wood trim, 18-inch double five-spoked wheels, and matching 50th Anniversary Edition luggage.
The SL600 is the highest-output version of the non-AMG SL-Class models. It uses a V12 engine which produced 493 hp (368 kW) and 590 ft·lbf (800 N·m) from 2003 through 2006 and was uprated to 510 hp (380 kW) and 612 ft·lbf (830 N·m) for 2007. It accelerates from 0-60 mph in 4.7 seconds, according to Mercedes-Benz. However Car and Driver achieved extremely impressive acceleration test figures with 60 mph (97 km/h) achieved in just 3.6 seconds, 100 mph (160 km/h) in 8.6 seconds and a Quarter Mile run in 11.9 seconds at 120 mph (190 km/h). The article can be subject to argument that the car's performance was tested after several modifications were made to the vehicle itself, hence the impressive 0-60 timing.
The SL55 AMG version was released in 2002.
The new model has only slight visual differentiators, the most noticeable is the three-slat grille rather than the four-slat version used previously. The top speed is limited to 250 km/h (155 mph), but can be extended to 300 km/h (186 mph) for an additional cost. The 6.3 litre V8 replaced the current engine for the 2009 model year. Upon release in 2002 this was for its time the fastest automatic car in the world. This was before the SLR Mclaren hit the market in 2003–present. Jeremy Clarkson owned one of the very first SL55 AMG's.