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Price, fuel economy, range and depreciation

Both in headline figures and, in our own experience, the Mercedes SLK offers reasonable fuel economy. We returned 30.1mpg overall in the SLK 200, which is a long way off the claimed 41.5mpg, but those spending more time on main arterial roads should creep closer to high 30s than our more taxing, varied test route - we've managed more than 30mpg on a cruise even from the SLK 55 AMG. But clearly, if economy is a priority then the diesel SLK 250 is the best option.

The SLK is priced competitively against its closest rival, the BMW Z4, but it looks distinctly expensive if you’re willing to accept a fabric, rather than metal, folding roof. The front-wheel-drive Audi TT Roadster undercuts it substantially – by up to £6k is some instances, and even offers rather more potent performance in some instances.

Depreciation is set to be substantially better than the obvious rivals'

Crucially, depreciation is set to be substantially better than the obvious rivals’. Overall, and not least because the Merc feels so high class in its finish and appearance, it promises to be a very good ownership proposition.