The Mercedes SLK was a ground-up new model when introduced in 2011. Its looks were fairly evolutionary, and very successful if the opinions of all our testers are to be believed. The SLK is well proportioned, particularly given the awkward engineering problems thrown up by folding hard-tops. It’s undoubtedly desirable enough for the image-conscious audience it targets.
Underneath the body of the front-engined, rear-wheel-drive roadster, the SLK gets multi-link suspension all round, with passive dampers and coil springs as standard. Most models can be fitted with a ‘dynamic handling pack’, which brings with it active dampers that can also be adjusted for firmer response via a Sport setting on the dashboard, as well as sharper steering responses and a torque vectoring system that allows the car to activate any of the brakes individually to aid cornering.
Cars in AMG Sport trim also gets a 10mm suspension drop.
The four-cylinder petrol models are the only ones in the range that come as standard with a six-speed manual ’box, as tested here, although the seven-speed auto that’s a standard fitment on the other models is available as a £1500 or so option.
While not exceptional, the headline claimed figures for both performance and economy are very competitive throughout the range.