Mercedes-Benz, Volkswagen, and Audi announced details of their Takata inflator recalls, and the campaigns affect nearly 1.7 million vehicles in the US.
Mercedes Slk Class
Planning to reduce its platform count to just four, Mercedes-Benz will put the next generation SL on the same Modular Sports Architecture (MSA) as the upcoming SLK. Right now they are the only two cars planned to use MSA, with the firm's other rear-wheel-drive cars going on the Modular Rear Architecture (MRA). That leaves the Modular Front and Modular High architectures for the rest of the lineup.
Here's a chance to acquire a celebrity-owned vehicles, and this time at a discount instead of a premium. So the celebrity in this case is Consumer Reports, that magazine that could be equally adored and abhored by car enthusiasts. CR buys all of its test vehicles and usually finds willing second owners within its own ranks, but its opening its small used-car lot to the public. On the forecourt are four roadsters: an automatic 2012 Audi TT 2.0 TFSI Quattro S-Tronic with 6,600 miles for $36,500, a
Carlsson's race-tuned versions of the Mercedes-Benz SLK have been taking checkered flags for years, and we won't be surprised if its SLK 340 hill climber fares any different. Developed by multiple German and Swiss hill climb champion Reto Meisel, the carbon-bodied SLK 340 with lightweight brakes and a closed underbody weighs 1,716 pounds. Propelling that tiny bit of weight is a 3.4-liter V8 from Judd with 610 horsepower, and it rolls on 18-inch wheels shod in Avon tires.
We've had the chance to sample Mercedes-Benz's so-called Magic Sky Control technology in both the SL and SLK roadsters, and it's a pretty clever party trick. The technology can turn the overhead roof panel in either of the two-seaters from transparent to opaque by energizing the light-blocking crystals sandwiched in the glass. By electrifying the crystals, they reorder themselves, varying the amount of light that's let through the glass roof panel.
The smallest roadster in the automaker's lineup is all-new for 2012, and hardly in need of more power, but that hasn't stopped Mercedes-Benz from shoehorning its AMG-tuned 5.5-liter V8 under the hood. The naturally-aspirated M152 engine, featuring direct injection, is rated at 415 horsepower at 6,800 rpm with 398 pound-feet of torque at 4,500 rpm. The standard gearbox is AMG's Speedshift Plus 7G-Tronic automatic with three electronic modes. Rev-matching on downshifts is also standard. According
Balancing power and economy is a tricky business, especially for Mercedes-Benz and its in-house performance division, AMG. On the one hand, a buyer's conscience demands improved fuel economy and reduced emissions. But on the other, AMG knows what its customers really want is pure, unadulterated muscle.