Mercedes-Benz SLK (2004–2011)

Model History

April 2004

Gorgeous, highly desirable second generation SLK with front like Maclaren Mercedes SLR. 4,087mm x 1,794mm x 1,271mm high. Standard wheel and tyre size 225/50 R16 92W.

Folding tin top as before, but more of a sports-car than original. Boot takes 300 litres or 208 litres with top down. Euro 4 3,498cc V6 developing 272PS at 6,000rpm and 350Nm torque. SLK55AMG has 360PS, range starts with supercharged 163PS 1.8. 6-speed manual or 7G-Tronic autobox with steering wheel button shifters. Additional £31,500, 2,996cc 280 has 231PS and does 0-60 in 6 seconds. Much better looking, more practical and easier to live with than a Boxster, though obviously less of a sportscar.

September 2007

SLK 55 Black Series launched

Designed as even more driver-focused variant of the V8-powered SLK 55 AMG Roadster, using motorsport-inspired technology to deliver scintillating performance and enhanced driving dynamics.

Output from the 5.5-litre AMG engine is boosted from 360 hp to 400 hp and 45 kg has been shaved off the kerbweight through the use of lightweight components including a new fixed hard top. As a result, the 0 to 60 mph dash drops from 4.7 to 4.3 seconds, while 125 mph is, where permitted, clocked up in just 15.5 seconds – a full two seconds quicker. Top speed is no longer restricted to 155 mph, and the car can reach 173 mph.

December 2007

SLK facelift announced

Has 650 newly developed parts. Visual enhancements include new-look front and rear sections as well as a modified interior with a new instrument cluster and three spoke sports steering wheel. A fast-running V6 sports engine developing 224 kW/305 hp and an optionally available direct-steer system make the SLK350 a quicker, finer handling car.

All engines now more economical on fuel and emit even less CO2, despite a substantial increase in output in many cases. New generation SLK models will be available from April 2008, pricing will be announced early in 2008.

New NTG 2.5 audio and telematics easier to operate and offers an even wider range of useful functions. Standard features integrated in every radio include hands-free Bluetooth and new media interface in the glove compartment, allowing full integration of mobile audio devices such as an iPod. LINGUATRONIC voice-operated control system as an optional extra.

Three modified powerplants consume less fuel and emit less CO2. The four-cylinder powerplant in the SLK 200 Kompressor and the six-cylinder sports engine in the SLK 350 both offer substantially more power and torque. Only the SLK 55 AMG retains its familiar engine. SLK 350 now develops 224 kW/305 hp at 6500 rpm, 24 kW (33 hp) more than its predecessor.

Peak torque has also been boosted, by 10 Nm, and now stands at 360 Nm when the engine is running at 4900 rpm. This result was achieved by raising the engine speed limit to 6800 rpm; it can even be increased to 7200 rpm for a brief period. In combination with the 7G‑TRONIC automatic transmission, the engine management system also blips the throttle automatically during downshifts. As well as producing an extremely sporty sound, this throttle-blipping function reduces load alteration effects.

Combined fuel consumption of manual 29.7 mpg; if the 7G-TRONIC automatic transmission is fitted, the sports powerplant returns a combined fuel consumption of just 30.7 mpg. CO2 emissions are also reduced – by 23g/km to 219g/km in the automatic version and by 28g/km to 227g/km in the manual. So auto is under the UK 225g/km limit and does not suffer the tax hike to £400 from March 2008.

Four-cylinder supercharged engine boosted by 15 kW/21 hp (to 135 kW/184 hp), while torque has been increased from 240 to 250 Nm. Combined fuel consumption has been reduced to 36.7 mpg whilst CO2 emissions have been reduced by 27g/km to 182g/km.

SLK 280 consumption cut to 30.4 mpg (if an automatic transmission is fitted, the figure is 31.0 mpg), while CO2 emissions have been reduced by 11 g to 220g/km (if an automatic transmission is fitted, the figure is 6g lower at 216g/km).

SLK 55 AMG still equipped with the familiar 5.5-litre V8 powerplant developing 265 kW/360 hp and a peak torque of 510 Nm.

Standard equipment for the three new SLK models includes a precise six-speed manual gearshift, while the SLK 55 AMG still comes with the 7G‑TRONIC Sport seven-speed automatic transmission fitted as standard. Optional extras available include a five-speed automatic transmission for the SLK 200 and the 7G-TRONIC seven-speed automatic transmission or, alternatively, the 7G-TRONIC Sport with shift paddles on the steering wheel for the six-cylinder SLK 280 and SLK 350 models.

A newly developed direct steering system with variable steering assistance, available as an optional extra (standard for the SLK 55 AMG), further highlights the qualities of the sporty chassis, combining agility and manoeuvrability when driving on twisting rural roads with steering comfort when parking and assured steering characteristics when travelling at high speed.

Direct-steer system is based on the previously installed speed-sensitive power steering system and operates by purely mechanical means, meaning that there is no need for elaborate actuators and complex sensors. At its heart is a new rack with slick gearing, which ensures that the steering gear ratio changes in tune with the steering angle.

The ratio is indirect when the steering is in or around the central position so as to ensure excellent straight-line stability and, therefore, a high degree of assuredness when travelling at high speed. At a steering angle of just 5 degrees, the ratio starts to increase extremely rapidly and the steering feels much more direct. As a result, the number of steering wheel revolutions from lock to lock is reduced by around 25 percent if the new direct steering is fitted.

This means that, even in city traffic, relatively little steering wheel movement is required to correct the car's path. Fast sequences of bends on rural roads can be negotiated almost intuitively with relatively small steering movements – with assurance, precision and a healthy dose of driving enjoyment.
Visually enhanced SLK 55 AMG

The 2008 SLK 55 AMG has a new front apron and dark-tinted headlamps. The handling dynamics have been sharpened. For the first time the car features the new direct steering with variable servo assistance, which makes this 360PS 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 faster gearchanges.

June 2009

SLK 2LOOK Edition launched

Available in Calcite White or Black paint. Obsidian Black Metallic paint is available as an option, while designo Mystic White paint is available as a special order. Imposing 18” 5-twin spoke alloy wheels are standard with a choice of two finishes, Titanium Silver or Chrome Shadow. The 2LOOK has black surrounds on the headlamps and 2LOOK Edition badges on the wings.

Inside, SLK 2LOOK has sports seats upholstered in sumptuous black and white designo nappa leather with contrasting topstitching. The multi-function steering wheel, centre armrest and door panels also feature the luxurious feel of the designo nappa leather which is carefully selected for quality by experienced Mercedes-Benz upholsterers who ensure top level craftsmanship and attention to detail. Further enhancements include a black roof lining, Mystic white dashboard trim and black velour floor mats with white edging and 2LOOK badges.

AIRSCARF neck-level heating system is fitted as standard and acts like an invisible scarf to ensure occupants keep warm out on the open road. Heated seats and a transparent 2LOOK Edition wind deflector also ensure maximum comfort when driving with the roof down, making open top driving as feasible on a crisp winter’s day as it is during the warm summer months.

200 KOMPRESSOR engine. From £31,235.00. With designo nappa leather and the host of other additional standard equipment on the SLK 2LOOK, offers over £2,395 of added value over the standard car.

What does a Mercedes-Benz SLK (2004 – 2011) cost?