The New Mercedes Benz SLK AMG

Mercedes Benz SLK AMG

The New Mercedes Benz SLK AMG

The SLK 55 AMG is now even more dynamic: a new front apron and dark-tinted headlamps give this unique eight-cylinder roadster an even more athletic look even at a standstill. The handling dynamics of the SLK 55 AMG have also been sharpened. For the first time the car features the new direct steering with variable servo assistance, which makes the 360 hp two-seater even more agile and responsive. The SLK 55 AMG is also the only car in itS-Class to feature a V8 engine, while the improved AMG SPEEDSHIFT 7G-TRONIC transmission now offers even faster gearchanges.

The appearance of the sporty roadster now reinforces the car’s claim to special status even more emphatically. The redesigned front apron with a more pronounced arrow-shape, the modified Mercedes star, enlarged air dams and a black-painted transverse fin on the lower section ensure a distinctly masculine aura. Large, round foglamps with chrome surrounds are now positioned further outwards, enhancing the impression of width. The hot air from the integral engine oil cooler is vented via side outlets in the front apron. The specific AMG bodystyling also includes AMG side skirts, the muscular AMG rear apron with a black insert and the AMG spoiler lip.

New features also include dark-tinted projection-beam headlamps and larger exterior mirrors for better rearward visibility. LED indicator repeaters in an arrow design ensure more safety. Even more striking than before are the new 18-inch AMG light-alloy wheels in a multi-spoke design. Painted in titanium grey and with a high-sheen star, these provide interesting contrasts when viewed from the side. With a width of 7.5 and 8.5 inches respectively, the AMG light-alloy wheels are fitted with size 225/40 (front) and 245/35 (rear) tyres. New, high-sheen 18-inch AMG light-alloy wheels in a twin-spoke design are also available in the same sizes on request. Outstanding deceleration values are ensured by the AMG high-performance braking system with internally ventilated brake discs all-round. The front brakes have perforated discs of size 345 x 30 mm; 300 x 22 mm discs are fitted at the rear.

Newly developed direct steering with variable servo assistance

The all-new direct steering system with variable servo assistance makes for first-class handling dynamics, and makes the SLK 55 AMG even more agile. A key component of this direct steering is the newly designed steering rack. This allows a ratio spread from 15.8:1 to 11.5:1 – which the driver experiences as more responsiveness at around five degrees or more from the centred position. Variable servo assistance makes the roadster particularly agile and lively on winding roads, as the driver has less to do than before – only 2.16 turns of the wheel are required from lock to lock. This also produces considerable comfort advantages when manoeuvring at slow speeds.

The driver of the SLK 55 AMG also benefits from this outstanding controllability during high-speed manoeuvres such as the VDA lane-change test, as his hands no longer need to be repositioned on the wheel. The AMG Roadster also sets standards when it comes to straight-line stability at high speed – this is where the less direct steering configuration in the centred position has a positive effect. This is supported by the already familiar speed-sensitive servo function: the servo assistance decreases as the speed increases, which improves both handling and driving safety.

AMG eight-cylinder engine for superior performance

The striking bonnet with its characteristic longitudinal fins conceals the 5.5-litre AMG eight-cylinder engine, which has an output of 360 hp and develops 510 Nm of torque – figures which remain unrivalled in this segment. Enormous torque, immediate responsiveness and the typical AMG V8 sound characterise the driving experience, together with outstanding performance: the two-seater accelerates from zero to 62 mph in just 4.9 seconds, reaches the 124 mph mark in 17.5 seconds and has a top speed (electronically limited) of 155 mph. Power is transferred by the AMG SPEEDSHIFT 7G-TRONIC transmission with steering wheel gearshift paddles, which now ensures even greater agility: gearchanges in the "S" (Sport) and "M" (Manual) driving modes are around 10 per cent faster than before. This is not only thanks to the new components in the seven-speed automatic transmission, but also to the new engine and transmission management, which also ensures that the gearshifts are smoother.

Published 27 December 2007 Melanie Carter

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