Currently reading: Merc SLS Roadster - new pics
Mercedes' V8 supercar loses its roof - and its gullwing doors
1 min read
13 December 2010

These are the latest spy pics of Mercedes-Benz’s drop-top SLS roadster, spied virtually undisguised during cold weather tests in Scandinavia.

The SLS Roadster is tipped to appear in late summer 2011, allowing a public debut at the Frankfurt motor show. It features an electrically operated fabric hood, similar in materials and construction to the roof on the E-class convertible.

See the spy shots of Mercedes' SLS Roadster

The biggest difference between the SLS and its open-top sister will be the removal of the original car’s gullwing doors. Because under the bonnet will be the same 563bhp 6.2-litre V8 powerplant as the regular car.

The convertible’s performance should be slightly short of the hard-top’s, thanks to a few extra kilos in the roof mechanism and body strengthening. Expect a 0-62mph time of around four seconds.

The price should be slightly higher, too, with an expected 10 per cent mark-up over the regular coupé. That should put it just over £170,000.

Read Autocar's full road test of the new Mercedes SLS AMG

See all the latest Mercedes SLS reviews, news and video

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Christian Galea 14 December 2010

Re: Merc SLS Roadster - new pics

TegTypeR wrote:
I assume you mean the hard top

Yes, sorry for not being clearer...

TegTypeR wrote:
Clarkson aside who's opinion I tend to take with a pinch of salt

I know what you mean, but sometimes he does come up with some good and believable arguments...I think this is one of them - I think he really does like the SLS.

TegTypeR wrote:
from what I have read...I am not sure it is all the car it could have been.

Of course, it depends what sorts of publications you read, but again those that I read suggest that it is quite a good fact, in a group test by a German car magazine, the SLS came just second after a Porsche 911 Turbo S and ahead of the Audi R8 V10...considering that this publication has a tendency to prefer anything related to VW (Audi in particular), I admit I was quite surprised to see that the SLS came ahead of the Audi and just short of a car that's been fine-tuned for so many years.

And, as you suggested, I would really like to drive one to give my own final opinion; after all, it's one's personal opinion that counts, not the journalists'.

TegTypeR wrote:
As I said though, just how I feel about it.

Fair enough...thankfully, everyone has different tastes and opinions :)

TegTypeR 14 December 2010

Re: Merc SLS Roadster - new pics

Christian Galea wrote:
If you're not convinced by the styling, I suggest you see it in the metal. I did just that this weekend, and was amazed at how better it looked in real life than in the pictures (not that I thought it was bad-looking in the pictures, mind)...something that seems to be true with most modern Mercs.

I assume you mean the hard top - I have too and am still not convinced. It is true however that I haven't driven one but from what I have read (Clarkson aside who's opinion I tend to take with a pinch of salt), I am not sure it is all the car it could have been.

As I said though, just how I feel about it.

Christian Galea 14 December 2010

Re: Merc SLS Roadster - new pics

MHanna wrote:
The long flat bonnet and general proportions of the car are Viper all the way.

Well, the proportions also happen to be very similar to the 300SL Gullwing, which came out way before any Viper (nearly 40 years before, actually) if anything the SLS should be more comparable to the 300SL than a Viper.

MHanna wrote:
It's almost as if there was some kind of a link between Chrysler and Mercedes...

I think you're referring to the rumours that the SLS originally started as a Viper...and this, I think, is why so many people associate the SLS with the Viper and forget that the 300SL ever existed...the thing is, though, that so far they are just rumours. And even if the SLS did indeed start as a Viper and was initially developed by American engineers before the project was handed over to Mercedes, I'm sure the Germans would have made some serious revisions so that it practically shares nothing with its American origins.