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    SLR Report

    First drive: Andrew Frankel drives the Mercedes SLR



    It's a silver medallist

    All cars have a natural cruising gait, the highest speed they can reach without really trying. In human terms, a brisk jog. In a 2 litre Ford Mondeo, for example, that speed is about 95mph. In a Porsche 911 it is about 120mph.

    It took me some time and a fair amount of South Africa (where I attended last's week's launch) to find a road sufficiently straight and long to discover what constitutes gentle exercise for this new Pounds313,465 Mercedes-Benz SLR McLaren, but I managed it in the end. The SLR's natural cruising speed is 170mph.

    At that speed it is comically relaxed. Flex your toes and it surges forward. Floor the throttle and it changes down, so much is there still up its sleeve. The car's top speed is 208mph, but that is only because its aerodynamics are designed to push the vehicle into the tarmac, therefore increasing drag. Without this effect it would do 220mph. At least.

    The SLR is the second production car to wear the McLaren badge, the first being the 240mph F1 launched 10 years ago and still the world's fastest road car. Unlike the F1, the SLR is not a true McLaren, but neither is it an opportunistic example of "badge engineering".

    The SLR may have been commissioned, styled, powered and paid for by Mercedes, but McLaren did the bulk of the design and engineering and will build the car in its factory in Woking, Surrey, at a rate of 700 per year from April.

    Contrary to what its price, carbon-fibre construction and 626bhp output might suggest, the SLR is best not thought of as another rival to road racers such as the Ferrari Enzo and Porsche Carrera GT but one born from the same philosophy as the Aston Martin Vanquish or Ferrari 575 Maranello - only raised on a diet of weapons-grade plutonium.

    It rides tolerably well, is quiet enough unless you are on coarse tarmac and it can be serviced by your local Merc dealer.

    But at its core beats the heart of a true maniac. Thanks to a supercharged, 5.4 litre V8 motor, it will hit 60mph in 3.7sec and needs little more than 6sec more to double the score. It's fitted with a five-speed automatic gearbox - which can be operated from buttons behind the steering wheel, too - but I'm not sure why they bothered. The engine has so much torque, Mercedes could have omitted the gearbox altogether.

    Nor is the SLR just a straight-line machine. In fact, the only thing more impressive than the Mercedes engine is McLaren's chassis. I spent two days going up and down mountains in an SLR and it was late on the second day - and only when I had plucked up the courage to be brutal with it - that I found its limit.

    Unless you're certifiable or the road is wet, if you can find a corner, the SLR can go round it.

    Which is why I'm going to hate writing these next paragraphs. Freud would have a field day with the car's shape, yet I still love the way it looks. And goes. And handles.

    It should therefore be close to perfect, but in fact it's closer to throwing away a winning hand. Even at this price, no car is faultless and the SLR's list of flaws includes steering that is less communicative than it should be and too much cheap plastic in the cabin, which is itself quite confined for tall drivers.

    There's also no manual gearbox option and, arrogantly, Mercedes won't let you have one in any colour other than silver or black.

    Were I a rich man, all this I could live with. The brakes I could not. Don't misunderstand me: the space-age ceramic discs will stand the car on its nose from any speed you like and last 200,000 miles, but their operation is simply horrid.

    Push the pedal a little and nothing happens, push a little more and your nose heads for the windscreen. It's enough to interrupt your flow on the kind of road for which the SLR was born, and around town it's infuriating.

    Also, should you brake very hard (perhaps because there's a solid wall of traffic in front of you) the rear spoiler flips up, thereby functioning as an air brake and obscuring your view of anyone about to come piling into the SLR's boot.

    And then there's the cost. As I mentioned earlier, the SLR is conceptually closest to the Vanquish and Maranello but you could damn near have both for the same price. Good though it is, it's not that good.

    But what really frustrates about the SLR is that the rest of the car is so phenomenally good. Indeed, it's a set of steel brakes and a Porsche 911 off the list price from being one of the greatest sports cars of all time. All the elements are there, its other faults being insignificant by comparison.

    Even as it is, it is one of the most memorable cars I've driven since the last one wearing the McLaren badge. The view down that endless bonnet, road stretching to the horizon, V8 thundering as we cruised across South Africa at 170mph, is one that will live in my mind long after the memory of its failings have faded.

    VITAL STATISTICS

    Model: Mercedes-Benz SLR McLaren
    Engine type: V8, supercharged, 5439cc
    Power/Torque: 626bhp @ 6500rpm / 575 lb ft @ 3250rpm
    Transmission: Five-speed automatic, rear-wheel drive
    Suspension: (front) Double wishbones, coil springs, anti-roll bar (rear) double wishbones, coil springs
    Fuel/CO2: 19mpg (combined) / n/a
    Acceleration: 0 to 60mph: 3.7sec
    Top speed: 208mph
    Price: Pounds313,465
    Verdict: Expensive, imperfect, but unforgettable
    Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

    Re: SLR Report 2

    2005 Mercedes-Benz SLR McLaren
    Two seats, eight cylinders, 617 horsepower and $400,000 - but does it add up?
    by Paul A. Eisenstein (2003-11-24)



    The baboons are unimpressed. They calmly stare off at the ocean, refusing to be distracted as we pull into the parking lot at the tip of the Cape of Good Hope. You can't say the same for the crowd of tourists who'd until now been watching the antics of the local wildlife. As the gullwing doors of our two-seater pop open, people step aside and gape as if they were watching the Red Sea part.

    You'd think they had never seen an SLR before. Come to think of it, they haven't. And except for the prototype put on display at this year's Frankfurt Motor Show, neither had we. To get a closer look - and some time behind the wheel - TheCarConnection spent the better part of two days traveling to South Africa.


    Five-year gestation

    It's been five years since the SLR made its debut in concept form, a prototype designed to showcase the skills of Mercedes and its Formula One partner, British-based McLaren. The over-the-top, two-seat coupe was a smash on the auto show circuit, as was the roadster that followed a year later - prompting Mercedes to announce it would add the SLR to its ever-expanding lineup.

    Going from concept to production has been no mean feat, especially in light of the SLR's heritage. The designation dates back to the race cars of the '50s, as well as the 1955 300SLR "Uhlenhaut Coupe." The show car was strongly influenced by Mercedes' modern Formula Silver Arrow racecar. That meant the production SLR would have to utilize cutting-edge materials and deliver world-class performance.

    Of course, it helps to have an ally like McLaren, which has long been one of the dominant players in the global motor sports circuit. So in early 1990, the partners divided up duties and set to work. McLaren was assigned the challenge of transforming the concept vehicle into production form, along with developing the vehicle's chassis and suspension. It also produces the so-called "body-in-white" at a new assembly plant near its headquarters in the U.K.

    Mercedes took on what was left, including exterior and interior styling, powertrain development, brakes, and safety technology. The German automaker also invested 200 million Euros. Actually, that number is a bit misleading, since Mercedes holds a 40-percent stake in McLaren, which reportedly put up millions more of its own.

    That might not sound like much in an industry where even a mundane sedan can rack up a billion-dollar price tag. But during an anticipated run, Mercedes and McLaren plan to produce just 3500 SLRs. Not annually, but 3500 total, at $400,000 a pop. Yet according to Dr. Jans-Joachim Schopf, the man in charge of development and engineering, Mercedes has already rung up enough advance orders to cover more than two years of production with little more to go on than the show car and a few promises.


    Exotica

    Let's face it, when you're spending this kind of money, you want more than just a fast car. It has to look exotic, and grab attention wherever it goes. There've been some changes in the production SLR's dimensions. The nose and tail have been tweaked a bit. But it's still got the same, long-nosed profile and sci-fi gullwing doors. Overall, the production SLR is just as striking as the show car, turning heads constantly.

    As with the prototype, the '05 SLR borrows bits and pieces from the McLaren F1 design, starting at the long front end with inset Mercedes tri-star. The twin wings below the nose serve similar purpose on street and track, providing plenty of downforce while helping channel air for cooling and engine breathing.

    Unlike such supercars as the Ferrari Enzo and Lamborghini Murcielago, the SLR follows the form of a classic GT, down to the front-mid engine layout. That's going to keep high-performance aficionados arguing for years to come. As for Mercedes and McLaren, they insist they've matched the performance of classic, rear-engine supercar designs, in part due to the SLR's track-influenced chassis.

    The monococque consists of three basic components, a front crash structure, an engine cradle and passenger compartment. The cradle is aluminum. All the other chassis parts, as well as the body, are made of incredibly stiff carbon fiber. Using new production methods, there are just 70 parts to the chassis, which weighs in at less than 700 pounds.

    Largely hidden away under the passenger "cell," the engine is a modified version of the big Mercedes 90-degree V-8, an SOHC design displacing 5.4 liters. In SLR trim, each engine is hand-built by the automaker's AMG unit. By integrating a belt-driven supercharger, sequential fuel injectors and a fully electronic throttle control, power comes on strong and fast, and by 3200 rpm, the package is making 575 lb-ft of torque. Horsepower peaks at 617.

    In a vehicle of just 3734 pounds, the effect is like being launched from the catapult of an aircraft carrier. Step into the throttle and you're thrust deep into the one-piece carbon fiber driver's seat. There's plenty of sound and fury; Mercedes engineers have put some effort into tuning the sound of the big V-8, though they haven't completely masked that strangely unsettling blower gear whine.

    The engine is mated to a beefed-up version of the Mercedes five-speed automatic transmission. The six-speed simply couldn't handle all that torque. While the thought of an automatic in a supercar might seem the ultimate oxymoron, we found little to complain about. In sport mode, shifts are quick, precise and quite intuitive. There's a comfort setting as well as a manual mode, the latter offering three settings that alter the abruptness of shifts. In manual, you toggle the transmission with well-placed buttons on the backside of the steering wheel - or with the gearshift lever.

    While we haven't had the opportunity to confirm the factory numbers, Mercedes claims 0-100 km/h (0-62.5 mph) of 3.8 seconds. Even more impressive, the SLR will launch from 0-200 km/h (0-125 mph) in just 10.1 seconds. Top speed is 334 km/h, or about 208 mph.


    Cape of good performance

    We only managed to nip the 180-mph mark on a long straight on a quiet stretch of well-paved road an hour outside Cape Town. But the engine had plenty left in it.

    Speed isn't the only thing that matters, of course. The composite chassis was as stiff as promised. Though, at times, it actually proved a bit too stiff. On a smooth surface, the SLR seemed almost glued to the road, tracking absolutely on-center. Steering was precise and smooth and, until we neared 140 mph or so, confidence inspiring. Above that speed, it tended to get a bit light, requiring lots of little corrections.

    Descending through the narrow, twisty pass towards the quaint wine country town of Franschoek, the SLR negotiated the tightest switchbacks with uncanny skill - except when the road surface got rough. There the carbon fiber chassis and race-tuned suspension could conspire against you, though it wasn't particularly difficult to bring the car back on track.

    Mercedes planners anticipate a number of SLR owners will be taking their car out onto the track. Perhaps, but for those who simply want to test its mettle on the street, the suspension could prove a bit difficult to handle. It's great on smooth pavement, but would likely shock one into numbness after an hour on the potholed roads of Detroit.

    Company officials say they're considering the idea of offering an optional electronic suspension, but that likely wouldn't show up in production for at least the first two years. Nor would such other niceties as the Mercedes Parktronic system, which would alert you when you're about to crunch the long, sloping nose into the back wall of your garage.

    When you're going racing, weight matters as much as raw horsepower, and Mercedes doesn't want to handicap any driver going up against the likes of the Enzo or Porsche's new Carrera GT. That means a minimum of sound-deadening insulation. You'll hear every grunt and roar of the engine, the rumble of a rough road surface and a surprising amount of wind noise.

    Call it the supercar irony. The more you pay, the more you give up to the effort to maximize performance. In the old days, some supercar interiors were as unrefined as a Yugo, and they weren't much more drivable. Mercedes intended to make the SLR a "daily driver." Indeed, if you don't mind the noise and the awkward way you have to slide over the wide door sill and tumble into your seat, it's quite possible to use the car all the time. There's even a trunk large enough - with 9.6 cubic feet of space - for the weekly family groceries - if you're planning to cook at home and save some money so you can meet your monthly payments.


    Unexotic bits

    We were a wee bit disappointed with the leather, aluminum, and carbon fiber interior of the SLR. It's reasonably well executed, though not quite as exotic as we'd have expected for the price tag. Sure, there's the cool "Start" button. You lift a perforated cover atop the gearshift lever to reach it, and when the car's running, it glows a ticket-me red. But the gauges? They could have been lifted out of a base SLK. If you're spending $400,000 - and especially if you're doing track time - you want more than just the basic tach, speedo, water temp, and fuel gauges.

    With a car like this, however, we'll overlook the complete lack of cupholders.

    One of the more striking visual features of the SLR is the big, deck-mounted flap. It serves double duty, first as a spoiler providing downforce at high speeds. Then, when you need to stop in a hurry, it pops all the way up to act as an air brake. And if the SLR launches like it was shot off an aircraft carrier, it stops like a jet grabbing a carrier's arrest hook. In terms of stopping power, the carbon fiber-reinforced ceramic brakes are a work of wonder, weighing half as much as steel discs, while developing 1.3 g of stopping force.

    But they are also the source of our biggest frustration. The floor-mounted pedal takes a surprising amount of force to engage. There's a noticeable amount of dead space and it's difficult to modulate. SWLR Project Manager Christian Fruh admits it's the most common source of complaint, but insists that's the price to pay for the SLR's high-tech brake-by-wire technology, which can do such things as adjust brake force, wheel-by-wheel, in a corner. Think of it as another one of those supercar ironies.

    So, when you add it all up, the power and performance, the compromises and idiosyncrasies, does it work out to $400,000? We have to admit that number is well beyond the budget for any member of TheCarConnection. Among those who can afford the likes of the SLR, Enzo, and Carrera GT, the new Mercedes/McLaren effort is more than a bit controversial. But there's no questioning the sales numbers. Nor the crowd-pleasing power of its exotic design. Even if you won't take it on the track, you're going to score big simply parking the SLR out front at a nightclub.

    Baboons might not take notice. Everyone else will.


    2005 Mercedes-Benz SLR McLaren
    Base price: $400,000 (U.S. est.)
    Engine: Supercharged 5.4-liter V-8, 617 hp/575 lb-ft
    Transmission: Electronic five-speed automatic with steering wheel-mounted paddle shifts for manual mode, rear-wheel drive
    Length by width x height: 183.3 x 75.1 x 49.5 in
    Wheelbase: 106.3 in
    Curb weight: 3734 lb
    Fuel economy (EPA city/hwy): 10/22 (prelim., based on European driving cycle)
    Safety equipment: Dual front airbags, knee bags, dual head/thorax side airbags, load-limiting seatbelts with pretensioners, ABS, traction control, stability control, BabySmart system for passenger seat, composite front crush system and carbon-fiber passenger compartment safety cell
    Major standard equipment: Electric seats, navigation system, leather, aluminum and carbon fiber interior, premium audio system with CD changer, xenon headlamps, LED taillamps
    Warranty: Three years/unlimited miles


    Re: SLR Report 2

    2005 Mercedes-Benz SLR McLaren
    Two seats, eight cylinders, 617 horsepower and $400,000 - but does it add up?
    by Paul A. Eisenstein (2003-11-24)



    The baboons are unimpressed. They calmly stare off at the ocean, refusing to be distracted as we pull into the parking lot at the tip of the Cape of Good Hope. You can't say the same for the crowd of tourists who'd until now been watching the antics of the local wildlife. As the gullwing doors of our two-seater pop open, people step aside and gape as if they were watching the Red Sea part.

    You'd think they had never seen an SLR before. Come to think of it, they haven't. And except for the prototype put on display at this year's Frankfurt Motor Show, neither had we. To get a closer look - and some time behind the wheel - TheCarConnection spent the better part of two days traveling to South Africa.


    Five-year gestation

    It's been five years since the SLR made its debut in concept form, a prototype designed to showcase the skills of Mercedes and its Formula One partner, British-based McLaren. The over-the-top, two-seat coupe was a smash on the auto show circuit, as was the roadster that followed a year later - prompting Mercedes to announce it would add the SLR to its ever-expanding lineup.

    Going from concept to production has been no mean feat, especially in light of the SLR's heritage. The designation dates back to the race cars of the '50s, as well as the 1955 300SLR "Uhlenhaut Coupe." The show car was strongly influenced by Mercedes' modern Formula Silver Arrow racecar. That meant the production SLR would have to utilize cutting-edge materials and deliver world-class performance.

    Of course, it helps to have an ally like McLaren, which has long been one of the dominant players in the global motor sports circuit. So in early 1990, the partners divided up duties and set to work. McLaren was assigned the challenge of transforming the concept vehicle into production form, along with developing the vehicle's chassis and suspension. It also produces the so-called "body-in-white" at a new assembly plant near its headquarters in the U.K.

    Mercedes took on what was left, including exterior and interior styling, powertrain development, brakes, and safety technology. The German automaker also invested 200 million Euros. Actually, that number is a bit misleading, since Mercedes holds a 40-percent stake in McLaren, which reportedly put up millions more of its own.

    That might not sound like much in an industry where even a mundane sedan can rack up a billion-dollar price tag. But during an anticipated run, Mercedes and McLaren plan to produce just 3500 SLRs. Not annually, but 3500 total, at $400,000 a pop. Yet according to Dr. Jans-Joachim Schopf, the man in charge of development and engineering, Mercedes has already rung up enough advance orders to cover more than two years of production with little more to go on than the show car and a few promises.


    Exotica

    Let's face it, when you're spending this kind of money, you want more than just a fast car. It has to look exotic, and grab attention wherever it goes. There've been some changes in the production SLR's dimensions. The nose and tail have been tweaked a bit. But it's still got the same, long-nosed profile and sci-fi gullwing doors. Overall, the production SLR is just as striking as the show car, turning heads constantly.

    As with the prototype, the '05 SLR borrows bits and pieces from the McLaren F1 design, starting at the long front end with inset Mercedes tri-star. The twin wings below the nose serve similar purpose on street and track, providing plenty of downforce while helping channel air for cooling and engine breathing.

    Unlike such supercars as the Ferrari Enzo and Lamborghini Murcielago, the SLR follows the form of a classic GT, down to the front-mid engine layout. That's going to keep high-performance aficionados arguing for years to come. As for Mercedes and McLaren, they insist they've matched the performance of classic, rear-engine supercar designs, in part due to the SLR's track-influenced chassis.

    The monococque consists of three basic components, a front crash structure, an engine cradle and passenger compartment. The cradle is aluminum. All the other chassis parts, as well as the body, are made of incredibly stiff carbon fiber. Using new production methods, there are just 70 parts to the chassis, which weighs in at less than 700 pounds.

    Largely hidden away under the passenger "cell," the engine is a modified version of the big Mercedes 90-degree V-8, an SOHC design displacing 5.4 liters. In SLR trim, each engine is hand-built by the automaker's AMG unit. By integrating a belt-driven supercharger, sequential fuel injectors and a fully electronic throttle control, power comes on strong and fast, and by 3200 rpm, the package is making 575 lb-ft of torque. Horsepower peaks at 617.

    In a vehicle of just 3734 pounds, the effect is like being launched from the catapult of an aircraft carrier. Step into the throttle and you're thrust deep into the one-piece carbon fiber driver's seat. There's plenty of sound and fury; Mercedes engineers have put some effort into tuning the sound of the big V-8, though they haven't completely masked that strangely unsettling blower gear whine.

    The engine is mated to a beefed-up version of the Mercedes five-speed automatic transmission. The six-speed simply couldn't handle all that torque. While the thought of an automatic in a supercar might seem the ultimate oxymoron, we found little to complain about. In sport mode, shifts are quick, precise and quite intuitive. There's a comfort setting as well as a manual mode, the latter offering three settings that alter the abruptness of shifts. In manual, you toggle the transmission with well-placed buttons on the backside of the steering wheel - or with the gearshift lever.

    While we haven't had the opportunity to confirm the factory numbers, Mercedes claims 0-100 km/h (0-62.5 mph) of 3.8 seconds. Even more impressive, the SLR will launch from 0-200 km/h (0-125 mph) in just 10.1 seconds. Top speed is 334 km/h, or about 208 mph.


    Cape of good performance

    We only managed to nip the 180-mph mark on a long straight on a quiet stretch of well-paved road an hour outside Cape Town. But the engine had plenty left in it.

    Speed isn't the only thing that matters, of course. The composite chassis was as stiff as promised. Though, at times, it actually proved a bit too stiff. On a smooth surface, the SLR seemed almost glued to the road, tracking absolutely on-center. Steering was precise and smooth and, until we neared 140 mph or so, confidence inspiring. Above that speed, it tended to get a bit light, requiring lots of little corrections.

    Descending through the narrow, twisty pass towards the quaint wine country town of Franschoek, the SLR negotiated the tightest switchbacks with uncanny skill - except when the road surface got rough. There the carbon fiber chassis and race-tuned suspension could conspire against you, though it wasn't particularly difficult to bring the car back on track.

    Mercedes planners anticipate a number of SLR owners will be taking their car out onto the track. Perhaps, but for those who simply want to test its mettle on the street, the suspension could prove a bit difficult to handle. It's great on smooth pavement, but would likely shock one into numbness after an hour on the potholed roads of Detroit.

    Company officials say they're considering the idea of offering an optional electronic suspension, but that likely wouldn't show up in production for at least the first two years. Nor would such other niceties as the Mercedes Parktronic system, which would alert you when you're about to crunch the long, sloping nose into the back wall of your garage.

    When you're going racing, weight matters as much as raw horsepower, and Mercedes doesn't want to handicap any driver going up against the likes of the Enzo or Porsche's new Carrera GT. That means a minimum of sound-deadening insulation. You'll hear every grunt and roar of the engine, the rumble of a rough road surface and a surprising amount of wind noise.

    Call it the supercar irony. The more you pay, the more you give up to the effort to maximize performance. In the old days, some supercar interiors were as unrefined as a Yugo, and they weren't much more drivable. Mercedes intended to make the SLR a "daily driver." Indeed, if you don't mind the noise and the awkward way you have to slide over the wide door sill and tumble into your seat, it's quite possible to use the car all the time. There's even a trunk large enough - with 9.6 cubic feet of space - for the weekly family groceries - if you're planning to cook at home and save some money so you can meet your monthly payments.


    Unexotic bits

    We were a wee bit disappointed with the leather, aluminum, and carbon fiber interior of the SLR. It's reasonably well executed, though not quite as exotic as we'd have expected for the price tag. Sure, there's the cool "Start" button. You lift a perforated cover atop the gearshift lever to reach it, and when the car's running, it glows a ticket-me red. But the gauges? They could have been lifted out of a base SLK. If you're spending $400,000 - and especially if you're doing track time - you want more than just the basic tach, speedo, water temp, and fuel gauges.

    With a car like this, however, we'll overlook the complete lack of cupholders.

    One of the more striking visual features of the SLR is the big, deck-mounted flap. It serves double duty, first as a spoiler providing downforce at high speeds. Then, when you need to stop in a hurry, it pops all the way up to act as an air brake. And if the SLR launches like it was shot off an aircraft carrier, it stops like a jet grabbing a carrier's arrest hook. In terms of stopping power, the carbon fiber-reinforced ceramic brakes are a work of wonder, weighing half as much as steel discs, while developing 1.3 g of stopping force.

    But they are also the source of our biggest frustration. The floor-mounted pedal takes a surprising amount of force to engage. There's a noticeable amount of dead space and it's difficult to modulate. SWLR Project Manager Christian Fruh admits it's the most common source of complaint, but insists that's the price to pay for the SLR's high-tech brake-by-wire technology, which can do such things as adjust brake force, wheel-by-wheel, in a corner. Think of it as another one of those supercar ironies.

    So, when you add it all up, the power and performance, the compromises and idiosyncrasies, does it work out to $400,000? We have to admit that number is well beyond the budget for any member of TheCarConnection. Among those who can afford the likes of the SLR, Enzo, and Carrera GT, the new Mercedes/McLaren effort is more than a bit controversial. But there's no questioning the sales numbers. Nor the crowd-pleasing power of its exotic design. Even if you won't take it on the track, you're going to score big simply parking the SLR out front at a nightclub.

    Baboons might not take notice. Everyone else will.


    2005 Mercedes-Benz SLR McLaren
    Base price: $400,000 (U.S. est.)
    Engine: Supercharged 5.4-liter V-8, 617 hp/575 lb-ft
    Transmission: Electronic five-speed automatic with steering wheel-mounted paddle shifts for manual mode, rear-wheel drive
    Length by width x height: 183.3 x 75.1 x 49.5 in
    Wheelbase: 106.3 in
    Curb weight: 3734 lb
    Fuel economy (EPA city/hwy): 10/22 (prelim., based on European driving cycle)
    Safety equipment: Dual front airbags, knee bags, dual head/thorax side airbags, load-limiting seatbelts with pretensioners, ABS, traction control, stability control, BabySmart system for passenger seat, composite front crush system and carbon-fiber passenger compartment safety cell
    Major standard equipment: Electric seats, navigation system, leather, aluminum and carbon fiber interior, premium audio system with CD changer, xenon headlamps, LED taillamps
    Warranty: Three years/unlimited miles


    Re: SLR Report 2

    Sounds like MB/MC could have done a better job? SLR needs more work.

    Re: SLR Report 2

    Sounds like MB/MC could have done a better job? SLR needs more work.

    Re: SLR Report 2

    Quote:
    Sounds like MB/MC could have done a better job? SLR needs more work.



    IMO the SLR is an overdesigned attempt that had to fail in some way. DC tried to get the best out of two worlds together - supercars like Carrera GT and Enzo and luxury GT like Vanquish and Maranello. There has to be a compromise.

    best,
    sr

    Re: SLR Report 2

    Quote:
    Sounds like MB/MC could have done a better job? SLR needs more work.



    IMO the SLR is an overdesigned attempt that had to fail in some way. DC tried to get the best out of two worlds together - supercars like Carrera GT and Enzo and luxury GT like Vanquish and Maranello. There has to be a compromise.

    best,
    sr

    Re: SLR Report 2

    This car is just sort of a dissapointment to me. Hopefully the SLR inspired facelifted SL will make up for this. Although the horsepower wars are great, its really begining to look rediculous to me.

    Re: SLR Report 2

    This car is just sort of a dissapointment to me. Hopefully the SLR inspired facelifted SL will make up for this. Although the horsepower wars are great, its really begining to look rediculous to me.

     
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