Image credits: © Mercedes-Benz.

2013 Mercedes-Benz SLK-Class news, pictures, specifications, and information

The Mercedes-Benz SLK Roadster - Style from Start to Finish

SLK Roadsters Feature Direct-Injection Fuel Economy and Power

The 2013 SLK represents the third generation of a sports car that rocked the automotive world when it unveiled the first automatic retractable hardtop in modern times. The latest SLK boasts a wide SLS-inspired front grille wîth a long hood as well as relatively wide doors and a short rear section.

MAGIC SKY CONTROL
The SLK standard convertible roof panel is made of body-color polycarbonate, and an optional Panorama Roof features a see-through panel. Optionally available is MAGIC SKY CONTROL, in which the tinting of the panel can be changed by the occupants, using the same electro- chromic technology as automatic dimming mirrors. Sandwiched between two layers of glass, a chemical film called a matrix polymer holds oblong nano particles that line up uniformly when electrical current is applied, allowing light to pass through. When the electrical current is turned off (via a button beside the mirror), the nano particles disperse randomly, reducing light and tinting the roof panel. Only 40-50 watts of current is used, so the roof can be left in the darkened mode when parked in hot weather.

Direct-Injection Engines


The 2013 Mercedes-Benz SLK line is comprised of three models – all wîth economical direct- injection engines. With even more power and better fuel economy than its predecessor, the popular SLK350 model is powered by a 3.5-liter V6 that generates 302 horsepower and 273 lb.-ft. of torque, while the SLK250 features a turbocharged 1.8-liter four-cylinder that makes 201 hp and 229 lb.-ft. of torque. The flagship model of the SLK line is the formidable SLK55 AMG, produced by AMG, the company's high-performance division. Its 5.5-liter V8 is rated at an eye-popping 415 hp and 398 lb.-ft. of torque.

ECO Stop-Start System


For 2013, the SLK350 and SLK55 AMG are equipped wîth an innovative ECO stop-start system. Whenever the car stops wîth the brake pedal depressed, the engine is automatically turned off to save fuel. (concept carz) As soon as the driver touches the accelerator pedal, the engine computer decides which piston is in the best position for first ignition, and the direct fuel injection and multi-spark systems work wîth a starter motor to re-start the engine almost instantly.

Economical Seven-Speed Transmission


While the SLK250 is equipped wîth a sporty six-speed manual transmission, the entire 2013 SLK line is available wîth a seven-speed automatic transmission that provides even better fuel mileage, more responsive driving, quieter operation and increased durability. The transmission features a more advanced torque converter lock-up clutch and a new type of low-viscosity ATF transmission fluid – colored blue instead of the usual red. Together wîth special planetary gears, bearings and internal seals, the 'FE-ATF' fluid provides less friction and improved fuel mileage.

ATTENTION ASSIST

Vital Stats
Engine : 1.8 L., 4-cylinder
Power: 201 hp
Torque: 229 ft-lbs

Engine : 3.5 L., 6-cylinder
Power: 302 hp
Torque: 273 ft-lbs

Engine : 5.5 L., 8-cylinder
Power: 415 hp
Torque: 398 ft-lbs

6-speed Manual, 7-speed Automatic, 7-speed Automatic

The SLK comes standard wîth an innovative 'Attention Assist' system, which couples a §teering movement sensor wîth intelligent software that can identify the erratic §teering corrections drivers make as they begin to get drowsy. When the system senses drowsiness, a warning message appears in the instrument cluster, and the driver is also alerted by a display that says, 'Time for a rest!'

Sophisticated enough to disregard sporty driving, the system works between 50 and 100 mph. Elegant in its simplicity, ATTENTION ASSIST essentially adds new computer software to existing sensors.

Blind Spot and Lane Keeping Assist



A new option for the 2013-model SLK, Blind Spot Assist uses dedicated radar sensors to monitor both blind spots behind the vehicle. Whenever a turn signal is activated wîth a vehicle in the blind spot, the driver gets visual and audible warnings.

Another new option, Lane Keeping Assist makes use of special computer analyzes images from a multi-purpose camera in the windshield to recognize lane markings. This system alerts the driver by simulating rumble strip vibrations in the §teering wheel if the car drifts from its lane without the turn signals on.

Adaptive Highbeam Assist


Also new for 2013, Adaptive Highbeam Assist uses a windshield-mounted camera to control the vertical tilt of both the low- and high-beam headlights. The system is engaged by turning the headlight switch to 'Auto' and turning on the high beam setting. Whenever there are no other vehicles in front, the high beams come on automatically, wîth the lights increasing gradually rather than suddenly. Since drivers no longer have to think about controlling the high beams, Adaptive Highbeam Assist makes it safer and easier to drive in the dark.

mbrace2


Mercedes-Benz was the first manufacturer to make emergency calling a standard feature, and the 2013-model SLK comes wîth mbrace2, the next generation of telematics innovation that gives drivers top-of-the-line features related to safety, infotainment, personal assistance and vehicle care. mbrace2 includes the ability to remotely update all software modules via cloud networks, so users always have the latest technology in their vehicles and at their fingertips. New services are also added to the mbrace2 Mobile Application, which is compatible with
both iPhone and Android smartphones.

The First Retractable Hardtop in Modern Times


Spearheading a trend that's still changing the auto , the latest SLK is best known for its distinctive retractable hardtop. With the top up, it's a quiet, weather-tight coupe – push a button, and about 20 seconds later, the car is topless.

Thanks to its pivoting rear window, the folded roof of the SLK takes up relatively little trunk space. Like the retractable hardtop of the larger SL model, the rear window of the SLK pivots to match the curvature of the top as it's being lowered.

AIRSCARF and AIRGÚIDE


An optional AIRSCARF system can extend the open-air driving season into the cooler months. Built into the seatbacks of the SLK, the neck-level heating system blows warm air from the driver and passenger-seat head restraints, allowing occupants to cruise comfortably wîth the retractable hardtop open in cooler weather. AIRSCARF even compensates automatically for changes in vehicle speed.

A standard fabric air deflector mounts to the SLK roll bars, helping to reduce air buffeting. Going a step further, an optional AIRGÚIDE wind deflector mounts to the back of the roll bars. Consisting of two Plexiglas panels, the wind deflectors can be adjusted independently by the driver and front passenger.

Source - Mercedes-Benz
Animal, muscular, poised, predatory and competitive, those are the words used to describe the Mercedes-Benz SLK. Mercedes-Benz designers and engineers continue to remain the world leaders in created a peerless and beautiful vehicle.

For 1998 Mercedes Benz chose to unveil something different; a 2-passenger sports car with a supercharged 2.3-liter 4-cylinder engine. Rather than a soft top though, the SLK featured a metal roof that powered down at the touch of a button into the trunk for stowage. Taking only 25 seconds, the trunklid opened forward for cargo, and tilted from the rear to raise or lower the top.

SLK stands for sporty, light, and compact in German. The design work behind the SLK stemmed from the compact C-Class sedan. The presence of the supercharged engine was marked with a 'Kompressor' badge on the front fenders. The Mercedes SLK only offered a 5-speed automatic transmission. Traction control, door-mounted side airbags and antilock brakes were standard features. When a special Mercedes child seat was installed, a 'BabySmart' feature automatically deactivated the right-side airbags. For 1997 the SLK was on Car and Driver's Ten Best list.

For the second year, the Mercedes-Benz SLK received a 5-speed manual transmission as standard, and the previously standard automatic transmission was now an option. A new Sport package was offered and included 'aero' lower-body cladding and performance tires on 17-inch wheels rather than the usual 16-inch wheels. Also becoming standard on the SLK was Mercedes 'Brake Assist' feature that automatically provided full braking force in emergency stops.

Not many changes were made for the 2000 Mercedes-Benz SLK except for the addition of free scheduled maintenance to the SLK's warranty coverage.

For 2001 the SLK added the SLK320 into its lineup. The SLK320 featured a 215-hp V6 engine with an additional 5 horsepower and standard 6-speed manual transition. The following year a new SLK32 AMG model was unveiled. A supercharged version on the V6, the SLK32 AMG featured modifications to suspension, bodywork, transmission and interior by Mercedes AMG performance team. The SLK32 AMG had a 3.2 liter engine and was available in limited qualities in the U.S. and went from 0-60 mph in 4.5 seconds. The SLK 32 AMG was the best-performing SLK ever, and was direct competition to the BMW M Roadster and Porsche Boxster S. The SLK 32 AMG was only offered with automatic transmission and came with a hand built engine.

The SLK 320 was built in South Africa, rather than in Bremen, Germany. On January 29, 1997, the very first R170 Mercedes SLK was completed, while the last was built on April 7, 2004.

The SLK230 and 320 Sport package now mimicked the SLK32's lower-body aero trim, projector-beam fog lamps and wheels. For 2003 the Mercedes SLK remained unchanged. In 2004 the SLK featured a special edition package that was only available for the year for the SLK230 and the SLK320. This special edition package included 17-inch wheels, exterior chrome accents, a body-colored grille and Nappa leather sports seats and roll bar. The SLK200 wasn't available for sale or purchase in the U.S., but overseas- and those who utilized the gray market in the U.S. – received a more economic and fuel efficient and slightly toned down 2.0 136 horsepower engine that was found in the SLK200.

The second generation of the SLK was unveiled in 2005, the R171. The retractable hard top SLK350 was returned to the market with enhanced handling, the power of a 3.5 liter V6, and a more uses friendly and elaborately detailed interior. The SLK350 Roadster was featured in 2006 along with the SLK280. Keeping most of the same features and options as the SLK350, the 280 was offered as a less costly option for a 3.0 V6 engine.

In 2007 the SLK55 AMG was released and built in very limited quantities and for high performance drivers. This version came equipped with a 5.4 liter V8 engine, 18 inch chrome wheels, and a sports car designed suspension with brakes and tires to match. The interior of the SLK55 AMG featured heated Napa leather upholstery and detailed luxury sport trim and control panels.

For this same year, no major changes were made to the Mercedes Benz SLK 350 or SLK 280 cabrioles or coupes. The public weighed in and the overwhelming review was that the SLK was spectacular with invigorating and responsive handling.

By Jessica Donaldson
 
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