• Jul 14, 2009
2010 Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG - Click above for high-res image gallery

The recent spate of leaks surrounding the Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG were a clear indication that a few select members of the press were invited to a pre-debut debut ahead of the gullwing's official unveiling at the Frankfurt Motor Show and that we could expect some initial driving impressions soon. Well, with the embargo dam critically injured, the first round of reviews have hit, revealing some critical details about Mercedes' all-new supercoupe.

Get the scoop after the jump.




Both Road & Track and Inside Line have published initial impressions of the SLS, and aside from glowing praise of the gullwing's dynamics ("The steering imparts a direct, communicative feel like no other Benz we've driven, SLR included." – Andreas Stahl, IL and "Unlike many cars that corner extremely flat, adhesion at the limit is easy to sense and control, with ultra-predictable breakaway and recovery." – Douglas Kott, R&T) the SLS' specs are out in the open.

Unlike the SLR, the SLS' chassis is all aluminum (all told, it tips the scales at around 3,550 pounds), and according to AMG Development Chief, Tobias Moers, "Aluminum is a better material, especially when it comes to quelling vibration." AMG's 6.2-liter M156 V8 is mounted aft of the front axle, but after undergoing a series of changes – dry-sump lubrication system and twin exhaust headers – it's been designated the M159 and puts out 571 hp at 6,800 rpm and 479 lb-ft of torque at 4,750 rpm.



A seven-speed dual-clutch gearbox is integrated into the rear axle, helping the SLS achieve a 48/52 front-to-rear weight distribution, and the new transmission is mounted to the naturally aspirated V8 by a carbon fiber driveshaft housed within an aluminum torque tube.

The wheelbase spans 105.5 inches, with the front track coming in at 66.1 inches and the rear covering 64.9 inches. Double-wishbones are mounted at all four corners along with 19-inch wheels up front and 20s in the rear (shod in 265/35 R19s in front and 295/30 R20s out back). Carbon ceramic brakes are an option, and come in at 15.4-inches in front and 14.2-inches in the rear. AMG claims a 0-60 mph time of 3.8 seconds, a top speed of 196 mph and a 1.38g on the skid pad.

Every tantalizing tidbit about the SLS will be officially revealed in two month's time, but if these initial impressions are any indication, Mercedes has a hit on its hands – assuming the SLS' exterior is as intriguing as its stats.



[Sources: Inside Line, Road & Track]


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  • 25 Comments
      • 5 Years Ago
      http://www.autobild.de/artikel/erste-bilder-mercedes-sls-amg_934805.html

      Apparently this is how the SLS will look like, I'm not sure if it's a fake or a spy shot. It looks quite realistic to me..
      • 5 Years Ago
      I wasn't sure I liked this car, but to be honest, having seen it back-to-back with the 300 SL (in pictures), I'm really digging its design. It has an "honesty" about it; it's not trying to be something other than a Mercedes. The design is faithful to the original without trying to be a carbon copy (Dodge Challenger--and yes I like them).

      I'm not sure about the interior though. It just looks...ok. Nothing particularly special, though I'll reserve judgment until I see it around the auto show circuit.
      • 5 Years Ago
      The initial reviews sound fantastic and the exterior styling of this is a departure from the modern vehicles, paying more homage to the past, traditional Mercedes-Benz designs.

      It's nice. It's not styled like the Astons or the Ferrari's, but still looks good.

      Damon Lavrinc, didn't this project begin life as a Dodge Viper? Or was that just Benz testing the engine, body and suspension components?

        • 5 Years Ago
        Nope. Just had Viper body panels
      • 5 Years Ago
      Slap a Dodge badge on the hood and its done...wait?
      • 5 Years Ago
      They should be using the top-of-the-line AMG engine for the top-of-the-line car... so why no V12? The S65 super-barge has it so surely this should too. As it stands now this is more akin to a re-bodied SL.
        • 5 Years Ago
        I think they were looking for a "purist" approach to speed... you know, less weight = better performance. The V12 would have been way to heavy for that. Besides, the 6.2L AMG V8 is plenty enough for a 3500 car :)

        This looks like a direct competitor to the Dodge Viper and Chevy Corvette... not heavier and softer GT sports cars. Something like a luxury track car :)
      • 5 Years Ago
      I saw this beast during some testing in Colorado's mountains ( It had camo on it, exactly like the official pictures show). It left quite the impression on my passengers, and myself. I can't wait to see what the final design looks like!
      • 5 Years Ago
      Did they review the car with in all that disguise? Or did MB take the disguise off for the preliminary reviews? They really need to take the mask off as soon as possible, for all these months its been looking like a Dodge Viper with ugly bits. The longer that mask stays, the more likely it will be remembered as a Dodge viper with ugly bits.

      Take the mask off MB!

        • 5 Years Ago
        Yeah. It looks like the Viper from Hell.
      • 5 Years Ago
      "and a 1.38g on the skid pad."
      that's pretty serious
        • 5 Years Ago
        You have a point there audi... it's highly unlikely that a 3500lbs car can pull 1.38g on street tires. The PS2s are one of the best around and they can "only" hold 1.10g in a ZR1, on a good day...
        • 5 Years Ago
        It's all that road-hugging weight.
        • 5 Years Ago
        I think they mean "1.38 when equiped with racing slicks and huge aftermarket wings"...

        ... you know, kinda like the GTR that laps the Nurburgring for Nissan
      • 5 Years Ago
      wow.
      wow. Unlike the hideous SLR, i think mercedes benz REALLY hit it out of the park here
      • 5 Years Ago
      1.38g on the skid pad??
      • 5 Years Ago
      Its pretty awesome and all but I thought it was supposed to be yet another uber hyper car to challenge the current hyper cars. it tops out at 196 which is quick but not challenging for the top dogs of even years ago. their old SLR is still faster...
        • 5 Years Ago
        For the record, the SLS AMG is supposed to sit above the SL 65 AMG but UNDER the SL 65 AMG Black Series. The SL 65 AMG Black Series is the McClaren SLR replacement.

        The SLS AMG is not supposed to be faster than the SLR. It's also not supposed to be as expensive either. That's what the SL 65 AMG Black Series is for.
        • 5 Years Ago
        aah, that would make sense.

        I guess i just want them to come out with another Halo Hyper car and was hoping that this could have been it.

        ooh well.
      • 5 Years Ago
      What an ugly, boring, car. It looks like it could be a concept designed by GM in 1982.
        Carlos
        • 5 Years Ago
        It looks like its going to be a 300k turd.
        • 5 Years Ago
        Agreed, they dropped the ball on that front end, but it's encouraging to hear that, like the One77 and all these other hyper front endgined, rwd, long nosed cars being produced, it's light and rives exceedingly well.

        I'm just continually disappointed they couldn't work any of the SLR SM magic on this car. That would have been remarkable.
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